One effective and fun way to learn English is to watch children’s programs or animated films in English. This is the perfect way to learn, not just for the little ones, but for students of all ages.
Why choose English cartoons?
The words are pronounced slowly and clearly, since they’re programs designed for children with a relatively simple level of language. Sometimes there are a few complicated words, but what they mean is explained within the episode.
In cartoons for small children, there are various repetitions that help with memorization. The structure is simple and easy to understand, favoring the comprehension of words and dialog.
They are generally short in length, not exceeding 30 minutes. This is ideal, considering the short attention span of our little ones.
They are fun, not just for children but for the parents as well.
These are our 6 favorite TV shows for learning English with the little ones. Let’s start!
Peppa is the most famous little pig on the web. The show is perfect for the smallest kids and can be a useful tool for adults in the early stages of learning English. Also, the language is very simple and full of repetition. The program can easily be found on the internet, and occasionally with subtitles as well.
Where to find it: YouTube
Mickey Mouse Clubhouse
Disney animation has always been a favorite of all age groups including, the old and young. They’re exciting, as well as educational! Who hasn’t been moved or entertained at least once by a Disney classic or by one of their latest works, such as the celebrated “Frozen”?
A special television channel has been created precisely for the purpose of transmitting the English language to toddlers in a brilliant way and in the company of Disney characters. Each episode is only 35 minutes long and contains a specific theme, and the structure is simple and repetitive. Disney Junior depicts an animated show in English, such as Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Little Einsteins and Special Agent OSO, interlaced with learning and educational moments. At the beginning and end of each episode, a group of native-speaking children entertain the audience, reviewing the themes and words from the episode. Finally, phonics practice helps the audience deepen their understanding of how English words sound as well as improving their pronunciation.
This program, like Peppa Pig, is perfect for those who are still in the beginning stages of learning English.
Where to find it: Disney Junior
Martha Speaks is a cartoon that tells the story of a little dog, Martha, who drinks a soup that, instead of going into her stomach, takes her on a miraculous journey through her brain and gives her the ability to speak. Each episode focuses on a specific subject illustrated with key words. Generally, the vocabulary is explained at the beginning and end of each episode. The repetition of key phrases helps with memorization. This animated show is appropriate for all ages and is characterized by its intelligent and educational content.
Where to find it: PBS Kids
Doki is a seven-year-old curious dog. He is an explorer with a lot of questions, which he finds answers for by traveling the world with his best friends: Oto, Mundi, Fico, Annabella and Gabi. Like Martha Speaks, Doki is an animated show that is useful for learning English, and at the same time, it’s educational and fun. It’s appropriate for children who already have a good understanding of the language.
Where to find it: Netflix – qubo
Beat Bugs is about the adventures of five small insects that live in the garden of a house in the suburbs of the United States. The dialog uses the American accent and is intermixed with musical moments based on famous Beatles songs, interpreted by contemporary artists. Sometimes the selected songs are related to life lessons learned by the little protagonists. The peculiarity of this animation comes from the combination of two valuable sources: dialog and songs.
Where to find it: Netflix
Phineas and Ferb
Phineas and Ferb is an animated series produced by Disney Channel that tells the adventures of two half-brothers who spend their summer days inventing incredible and spectacular inventions. Some of the characters, like their sister, don’t appreciate their inventions and try to make things harder for them. Phineas and Ferb teaches us that we should always try to surpass our limits. This truth is precious for those that are preparing to learn a new language! In almost all the episodes, there is one or more original songs, sung by the main characters. This dynamic and fun cartoon is great for those that already have a good knowledge of English, but who wish to improve their comprehension and expand their vocabulary.
Where to find it: Netflix
These are only a few of the many programs that can help you learn English or teach it to your children. If you are a parent, here is some advice about how to help your children in their contact with the English language:
You can first show the episodes in your own language, if they’re available. Understanding the story will help children concentrate more on the language, and that will encourage their implicit learning.
If your children already know how to read and subtitles are available, use them! If possible, first show the animation with subtitles in your language, then later with English subtitles so that they will also learn the correct spelling.
Watch the programs with your children. Their learning will then be an enjoyable moment you share with each other!
At the end of each episode, repeat the words you learned while watching the show together.
Try to bring the stories that are presented in the animations to life, inserting as many English words as possible.
Finally, for us at ABA English, there’s nothing left to do but wish you enjoyment with the TV programs that you watch. If you don’t know where to begin, remember that you can try the 144 English grammar video-classes that we offer with our course for free. You can also access our short films with a paid subscription. What are you waiting for?