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4 Ways to Watch Kids Shows without Cable TV

4 Ways to Watch Kids Shows without Cable TV

Watching kids’ shows on an app is perfect if you don’t want to pay for cable, your child only wants to watch one show again and again, or you need to entertain your children ASAP, likely in a public setting.

Before I was a parent I told myself that my child would play with blocks and read books and I would not rely on kids’ shows to entertain them. Ha! My daughter has usurped the tablet. At this point, it’s used as toddler entertainment – something I had always judged other parents for. That being said, my daughter does love books and blocks, but sometimes mommy needs to get things done, and a kids’ show will give me at least ten minutes of uninterrupted time to (insert housework here).

Here are my tried, tested and true apps for streaming educational and entertaining kids’ shows.

1. PBS KIDS

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kids' shows PBS kids

    The PBS KIDS Video App  app is updated with new episodes of their top kids’ shows every week. Notable series include Sesame Street, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood and Curious George.

    The colorful interface is easy for kids to use, with large buttons and pictures of their favorite characters. There is also a great parent resource section, which includes information about each series, and the option to stream through the TV using Chromecast.

    Not only is it available for Apple and Android, you can also get it as an app for your Nook or Kindle. This makes it ideal for travel, but only within the United States.

    2. Knowledge: kids go

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    kids' shows knowledge kids

      Knowledge: kids go is the Canadian answer to PBS KIDS. It’s an app designed for kids age two to eight, with thousands of full-length videos. They regularly update their library with the latest episodes that appeared on TV that week.

      The library of kids’ shows is organized by interests, like “Science Stuff” and “Robots, Aliens and Dragons”, which makes it easy to find something new your child might like. Their top shows include Paw Patrol, Wild Kratts, and Doozers (as in Fraggle Rock). The app also includes educational games.

      There is a parents’ section that allows you to set a time limit, enable closed captioning, and put it into Baby Lock Mode (my favorite).

      3. YouTube Kids

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      kids' shows youtube kids

        Many cable networks make their kids’ shows available for free on YouTube.  YouTube Kids is a safe and easy way for your kids to watch these shows, but without potentially linking to questionable content in the side bar.

        Parents can customize the YouTube Kids app by selecting the age level of the user (all kids, preschool, or school age), setting a timer to let children know their screen time is up, and disabling the search function. You can also stream this app to the TV.

        Unlike the above apps, YouTube Kids does contain paid ads to provide the content for free.

        Expert Advice: I use YT Kids in combination with a screen lock app so my daughter doesn’t accidently exit while watching.

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        4. Netflix Kids

        kids' shows netflix kids

          I’ve written about my love for Netflix before. One of the many reasons I love it is because you can sign into a kids’ account that only links to family-friendly content, and you can choose the maturity level. You can stream to your TV, and watch it on all types of mobile devices.

          Netflix has a variety of kids’ shows and films of various lengths, both old favorites and original content. Another perk is that you can stop a show part way through and continue from that point later on.

          The only downside to the Netflix app is that it doesn’t have a screen lock option, and, in my experience, doesn’t work with touch lock apps.

          All of these apps are child-friendly and free (barring the subscription price of Netflix). I prefer not to pay for apps, but if streaming a video keeps my child happy while we’re dining out, I’ll eat the data charges.

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          Last Updated on February 15, 2019

          7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

          7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

          Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

          Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

          Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

          So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

          Joe’s Goals

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            Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

            Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

            Daytum

              Daytum

              is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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              Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

              Excel or Numbers

                If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

                What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

                Evernote

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                  I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

                  Evernote is free with a premium version available.

                  Access or Bento

                    If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

                    Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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                    You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

                    Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

                    All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

                    Conclusion

                    I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

                    What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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