The Summer break is for new beginnings, tons of ice cream, joy-filled activities, and happy spirits. And more importantly- lots of happy family time! Vacations and board games will keep you busy as a family and snuggling together to watch a movie or series only adds to the fun! But finding good shows is not easy. So why not share some of the older shows with your kids? It can give kids a new perspective and help you bond as you watch and discuss them! Here is a list of kid-friendly TV shows that you can binge-watch together as a family:
For ages: 11+ | Genre: Fantasy
Merlin is a show about a young and powerful warlock who must keep his magical powers hidden. He befriends King Arthur and together they embark on many adventures. The friendship of young Merlin and King Arthur is filled with wit, banter, and good old British humor. Every episode ends on a cliffhanger, making it perfect for binge-watching. It is a treat for young kids that enjoyed the Harry Potter movies.
2. One Day At A Time
For ages: 12+ | Genre: Family Drama
One Day At A Time is a series that follows the life of Penelope, a newly single Army veteran, as she raises her teenage daughter and tween son with the help of her traditional mother Lydia. They navigate the cultural differences encountered in America and other ups and downs of life. The show touches upon important topics related to family and growth.The writing in One Day at a Time may resemble that of a sitcom, but the family bonding is sweet to watch, making this a great family fare with much laughter and feeling!
3. A Series Of Unfortunate Events
For ages: 8+ | Genre: Fantasy
This Netflix series, based on the Lemony Snicket books, is as fun as it is spooky. The show is based on a series of thirteen children’s novels written by American author Daniel Handler under the pen name Lemony Snicket. The books follow the extraordinary lives of Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire. The Baudelaire orphans face trials, tribulations, and the evil Count Olaf in their quest to unlock long-held family secrets. Some of the takeaways from the show are that one must- not underestimate children or their engineering abilities, read as much as one can, and above all, think for oneself!
4. The Baby-Sitters Club
For ages: 8+ | Genre: Teen Drama, Comedy
The Baby-Sitters Club follows the story of a group of five middle-school friends who decide to launch their own babysitting business in Stoneybrook, Connecticut. It is a modern update on the series of novels written by Ann M. Martin that sold over 176 million copies worldwide! It is cute, fresh, and has adorable as well as heartbreaking moments. It is a well-made show and the acting is great given how most of the cast members were kids. It is filled with moments to learn from and makes for a show that kids will love.
5. The Mandalorian
For ages: 12+ | Genre: Fantasy, Adventure
The Mandalorian is about a lone bounty hunter that takes on risky and surprising adventures after the defeat of the Empire. The show has new characters (the most popular one being Baby Yoda who went viral on the internet not so long ago) with new catchphrases, while tying them to the Star Wars series, making it both fresh and relatable. You don’t need to watch any Star Wars movies beforehand to watch The Mandalorian as the story starts years before the Star Wars timeline.
6. Modern Family
For ages: 13+ | Genre: Comedy
Three modern-day families from California try to handle kids, quirky spouses, and jobs in unique ways, always encountering hilarious situations. Jay is married to Gloria, a Columbian immigrant with an old soul for a son. Mitch and Cam raise Lily, their adopted daughter who is a sassier diva than themselves. And Phil and Claire have their own rollercoaster ride navigating lives of their three kids Haley, Alex, and Luke while trying to find balance in their own. The show is clever, heart-warming, and genuinely funny. Every episode has at least one scene that will make you laugh out loud. It explores various themes in family dynamics and has many moments to learn from as a family.
7. Avatar: The Last Airbender
For ages: 4+ | Genre: Animated, Fantasy
In a war-torn world of elemental magic, a 112-years old young boy Aang reawakens to undertake a dangerous mystic quest to fulfill his destiny as the Avatar, and bring peace to the world. Aang, Katara, Sokka and Toph make friends (and enemies) on the way as Aang tries to master all the elements. A fan favorite for over more than a decade, ATLA is not a one-dimensional cartoon series with mindless humor or violence. It beautifully touches on the themes of friendship, forgiveness, loss, struggle, and learning, while being speckled with timeless wisdom that makes the show evergreen.
8. Doctor Who
For ages: 10+ | Genre: Fantasy, Adventure
Doctor Who is a wonderful series featuring a protagonist that relies on his wits rather than violence. It is a classic science-fiction program with a cult following. It is said to be an icon of modern British culture and has been the longest-running science-fiction TV show in history. The Doctor is called a `Time Lord’, a time-traveling scientist from a far-off planet, who changes into hilariously surprising (but necessary for the situation!) forms and travels through time and space in his ‘TARDIS’. It is a much-loved fantasy show and a great watch for kids.
9. Gilmore Girls
For ages: 12+ | Genre: Family Drama, Feel-good
Gilmore Girls is a show filled with amazing cultural references. Lorelai Gilmore, an independent young woman, shares a close bond with her wilful Ivy-league bound daughter, Rory, while trying to navigate her relationship with her own mother. The show follows three generations of Gilmores and is loved by viewers of all generations. It aired as early as 2000 and yet it remains a favorite to be watched with parents, as it encourages a warm mother-daughter relationship.
10. Kim’s Convenience
For ages: 13+ | Genre: Comedy, Feel-good
Kim’s Convenience is a smart, fun, diverse Canadian show that addresses social issues. It revolves around a Korean Canadian family and uses the premise to address issues like racial profiling, discrimination, and other contemporary social issues. Filled with humorous moments, cozy family scenes, and witty dialogues, it makes for a fun watch with family.
So snuggle up in your blankets and get started with either one of these warm, feel-good shows. Enjoy the family bonding and fun on reel as you experience the same with your family in real life like summer break. Nothing brings families together like passionately discussing their favorite characters or what they think will happen next on a show!