Best Spanish Cartoons for Kids
Want to maximize your kids’ summer screen time with Spanish programming? Check out these links to our favorite Spanish language cartoons!
With kids out of school and summer in full swing, we thought you might be interested in maximizing your kids’ screen time with some exposure to Spanish language programming – or Spanish language cartoons, to be exact!
In our house, we use Netflix and AppleTV. As it turns out, many well-known cartoons can be found in Spanish – but getting to them can be tricky. There’s no Spanish language preset or preference, so here’s a tip if you use Netflix/Apple TV:
Choose the program you want to watch.
As it begins to play, hold down the select button for a few seconds to get a popup.
Here you’ll be able to select from “subtitles” and “audio.” If the program is available in Spanish, it will be listed as an "audio" option.
If you’re on your computer and using Netflix, you can use the same approach. Start the show, then mouse over the video until the bottom menu appears. Click on the third icon – the speech bubble – and a popup will show the audio and subtitles options.
Below I’ve created a list of our favorite Spanish language cartoons from the last few years that are available on YouTube, Hulu, Netflix and through various websites. Feel free to add your favorites in the comments below for all those following the thread!
Age 2 - 4
When my children were young, we enjoyed Pocoyo. The illustrations and storylines are simple, making it easy to understand for Spanish beginners. The show focuses on positive messages for children, from sharing, to making friends, to showing kindness. It's perfect for two-year-olds because the concepts and colors are basic and not overly stimulating. Watch on the YouTube Pocoyo Channel Español or on Netflix. There's also a website that includes links to related videos, apps, crafts, and activities.
Peppa Pig was another favorite in our house. I think the adventures of Peppa and George are relevant to a young child’s life and I truly enjoy all the laughter. Lately, Peppa Pig has faced some scrutiny because of Peppa's bratty nature. I do watch TV with my kids and have found the shows always include a teachable moment. But of course, whether or not the show is for you is ultimately a personal decision. Be sure to tell me what you think about Peppa Pig in our comments below.
Full Spanish episodes are available on the Peppa Pig YouTube Channel. I also have found a couple of Peppa Pig books in Spanish on Amazon that have made bedtime reading with a familiar cartoon character even more fun.
Daniel Tiger is another favorite, especially for three-year-olds. I like Daniel Tiger because it reminds me of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood: the music brings me right back to my childhood. There's always a lesson to learn with Daniel, and best of all, the show is available in Spanish on the Daniel Tiger YouTube Channel.
Sesame Street is now available at our fingertips in Spanish with Plaza Sesamo. I grew up with Sesame Street, so I love that my children can enjoy it as well – and in Spanish! There's a Plaza Sesame website dedicated to Spanish content, with tons of videos, activities, and games. There's also a YouTube Channel with lots of episodes. Sesame Street has always been a favorite because it incorporates various learning techniques that help with recall and learning, from rhythm and music to repetition and rhyme.
Age 3 - 5
As my children got older, we began introducing more advanced cartoons that incorporated learning and even jokes. A family favorite was Masha and the Bear, and I remember my son laughing nonstop as he watched each episode. Available on both Netflix and YouTube.
Learning about animals was also popular when me kids were at this age, and we were always on the lookout for some great shows. At home, we play the "animal game," where one person gives clues and the other person tries to guess the animal. Zoobabu is just like that – your child will be guessing the whole time. There are only a couple of shows, but it's a great way to start learning fun facts about animals. The show is available on both Netflix and YouTube. (Animals games are a great pastime during car rides, too!)
After we had exhausted all the episodes of Zoobabu, we fell into Octanauts. These cute animals are always on a fun adventure saving animals and learning fun facts about them. This is a wonderful show for a large age range from 4-7. Both my children enjoy learning about animals and the wonders that exist in nature. This show makes learning fun, but best of all, you can enjoy it in Spanish on Netflix or the show's YouTube Channel.
Somewhere around their last year of pre-K, both my kids started watching PJ Mask – and it’s available in Spanish, too! Three friends who go on evening adventures together turn into superheroes to fight villains of the night before the sun comes up. There is a YouTube Channel with all Spanish episodes, and it's also available on Netflix.
Llama Llama is a new animated series that was released in January 2018. It's a heartwarming set of stories about friendship, family, and childhood adventures. The Spanish is slow and easy to understand – perfect for young children. I didn't have the opportunity to watch this one with my kids, but would love to know what you think. (I have heard great things about it from other families.) You'll find the trailer here on YouTube, and more episodes in Spanish are available on Netflix.
Age 4 - 7
We entered a new phase when my kids started developing (and expressing) their own preferences. My daughter is really into music, and one of her favorite shows was Beat Bugs, which introduces children to the music of the Beatles! You can find these episodes in Spanish, but the songs are always in English, which I prefer. My children liked that they could enjoy music in English and the show in Spanish – true bilingualism at work here. Beat Bugs is a Netflix original series. (I could only find the episodes in English on YouTube.)
Children eventually grow up and discover their own favorites. And while gender seemed to have an influence on their selections, both my children enjoyed all these shows and often asked for the other's favorites:
My daughter is really into friendships and horses, which is why it was no surprise when we began watching Spirit. I like this show because it's about an adventurous girl who overcomes her fears, works together with her friends to problem-solve, and shows strong leadership qualities that I feel are important to showcase in female characters. These episodes are not available on YouTube, but you can enjoy the whole series on Netflix.
Lego Friends is another of my daughter's favorites. The show is about five friends and their adventures together. The characters are all very different, which I like because it shows that girls don't all have to like the same stuff. I also like that Lego Friends is about friendships, overcoming challenges together, and resolving conflict. It's only available on Netflix, although you can search around YouTube and find some episodes uploaded by users.
Dinotrux was one of my son's favorite when he was five. He considers himself a master builder, so this show was fascinating for him. A Netflix original series, Dinotrux is very well animated and great for children who love cars, trucks, and dinosaurs. The characters are master builders who work as a team to survive – and only together can they combat the challenges they face. Dinotrux is only available on Netflix.
Dragons is another Netflix original series based on "How to Train a Dragon." The story focuses on friendships, adventures, and of course, dragons, which both of my kids enjoy.
I hope you enjoy these recommendations for Spanish language cartoons! Please comment below with your favorites – and let's continue to share so we can help each other in this language-learning journey.
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