50 Great Educational Netflix Shows

Happy streaming!

What are the best educational Netflix shows? We’ve gathered the top 50! Whether you’re showcasing these to students in the classroom or using them as part of a distance learning curriculum, these are the best options currently streaming.

Note to teachers: Some schools block Netflix, which requires you to use Netflix’s offline feature to download preferred shows and use them during class. When it comes to the legality of streaming Netflix in the classroom, the company notes which media are available for educational screenings. Also, grade recommendations were made by our editorial team, but of course, you are always the best judge of the appropriateness for your own children and students.

Best educational Netflix shows for elementary school

Ask the Storybots

The only thing more curious than the bots are kids. Celebrity appearances and a music video at the end of each episode only add to the fun.

Brainchild

This science-based show answers all sorts of questions kids tend to ask.

Buddi

With kindness, curiosity and childlike wonder, five best friends explore their colorful world and find the extraordinary in everyday things.

Dream Big

This compelling documentary showcases some of the world’s biggest engineering achievements.

Earth to Luna

Curious about everything and excited about science, 6-year-old Luna, her brother Jupiter and pet Clyde explore nature to learn about the world. 

Emily’s Wonder Lab

Emily Caladrelli shares science experiments to help make STEAM fun!

Ghost of the Mountains

Travel with filmmakers as they head to the highest plateau on Earth to find the elusive snow leopard.

Growing Up Wild

Five baby animals in different parts of the world grow up learning to survive the wild.

If I Were an Animal

Observe different animals as they age from babies to adults.

Learning Songs by Little Baby Bum

Adorable songs that include “Baby Shark,” “Five Little Monsters Jumping on the Bed,” “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star,” and more!

The Magic School Bus

When a science concept just isn’t clicking for your students … Ms. Frizzle to the rescue! Stream episodes on the human body, gardening, weather, and more.

Number Blocks

Follow the Number Blocks as they work and sing in Numberland.

Octonauts

If you teach about the ocean, chances are there’s an Octonauts episode related to your unit.

Pocoyo

Follow the exploits of a fun-loving, curious little boy who loves to play and explore.

White Fang

Have students compare the film version to the classic novel of the same name.

Word Party

Meet Bailey, Franny, Kip, and Lulu, four cute and adorable baby animals, who want you to join in with the fun and help them learn.

Word Party Songs

These short videos (3-4 minutes each) teach opposites, colors, and more. Perfect for daily openers or brain breaks!

The Who Was? Show

Based on the popular book series, this live-action sketch-comedy show brings important historical figures, like King Tut, Marie Antoinette, and Pablo Picasso, to life in an entertaining and hilarious way. 

Best educational Netflix shows for middle school

A Life on Our Planet

This documentary follows David Attenborough, a famed naturalist, who maps how steeply the planet’s biodiversity has diminished over his lifetime.

A Plastic Ocean

Documentary filmmaker Craig Leeson discovers a startling amount of plastic pollution in the world’s oceans.

A Year in Space

Follow astronaut Scott Kelly’s year on the International Space Station.

Amelia: A Tale of Two Sisters

Eight decades after her disappearance, Amelia Earhart’s incredible accomplishments are still celebrated, thanks in large part to her sister Muriel.

Big Miracle

A biographical drama based on a true story. Drew Barrymore stars in this film about a reporter writing about whales trapped in the Arctic Circle.

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind

Based on the book of the same name, this movie tells the real-life story of William Kamkwamba, who saved his village by inventing a windmill.

Carmen Sandiego

That’s right, gumshoes! The story of the legendary professional thief has been remixed into a cartoon series. But in this iteration, Carmen is trying to thwart evil. Those of us who grew up playing the computer game and watching the game show will love introducing the globe-trotting Carmen to a new generation of kids.

Cutest Animals

Discover 72 of the cutest animals on earth and how their adorable features help protect them.

I am Kalam

Introduce students to other cultures with this film about a child who is inspired by the life of India’s president.

Kevin Hart’s Guide to Black History

Comedian Kevin Hart uses his silliness for good, teaching viewers about some of history’s unsung black heroes.

The Mars Generation

Teenagers at NASA’s Space Camp dream of traveling to Mars while experts reflect on the future and history of NASA.

My Octopus Teacher

Follow filmmaker Craig Foster as he spends a year forging a relationship with a wild common octopus in a South African kelp forest.

Night on Earth

New technology showcases the hidden lives of nocturnal creatures.

Oh Yuck

A fast-paced, fact-laden exploration of the science behind weird and gross subjects.

Operation Ouch

Twins Dr. Chris and Dr. Xand van Tulleken explore their way through the world of medicine and biology through hospital visits and emergency rooms.

The Short Game

Introduce students to the world of sports with these star golf athletes who are still in grade school.

The Speed Cubers

Follow the lives of speedcubing champions Max Park and Feliks Zemdegs, culminating with their attending the World Cube Association’s World Championships 2019.

Spelling the Dream

A documentary that explores the unbroken Indian-American dominance of the U.S. spelling bee arena.

Tiny Creatures

Small animals embark on big adventures in a dramatic nature series that explores their hidden worlds and epic survival stories.

Unstoppable

Follow Bethany Hamilton, best known for returning to her life as a professional surfer after losing her arm in a shark attack.

 

 

 

 

Best educational Netflix shows for high school

Abstract

Inspire the creatives in your classroom with this eight-episode documentary series on some of the world’s foremost designers, including photographer Platon, graphic designer Paula Scher, and sneaker designer Tinker Hatfield.

Bill Nye Saves the World

In this wacky talk show, the popular educator explores scientific topics in the everyday world, including climate change, video games, and space travel.

Bill Nye: Science Guy

Bill Nye faces climate-change skeptics as he demonstrates the importance of scientific evidence.

Dangerous Animals

Find out the 72 most deadly creatures on earth!

Explained

In less than 20 minutes, the show tackles various topics, from the water crisis to the racial wealth gap, in an accessible way. Be sure to preview episodes, as some are not suitable for the classroom.

Human Nature

A film documentary that presents an in-depth description of the gene-editing process of CRISPR, and its possible implications. 

Inside Bill’s Brain

Take a trip inside the mind of billionaire Bill Gates as he opens up about those who influenced him and the audacious goals he’s still pursuing.

The Mind, Explained

Ever wonder what’s happening inside your head? From dreaming to anxiety disorders, discover how your brain works.

Our Planet

This Netflix series is a lot like Planet Earth, except it urgently calls for viewers to think about the ways that human actions are putting the nature and animals the series covers in peril.

The Social Dilemma

This documentary-drama follows a group of tech experts who sound the alarm on the dangerous human impact of social networking.

The Twilight Zone

“I use it to teach irony (‘Time Enough at Last’), scapegoating (‘Monsters Are Due on Maple Street’), and conformity (‘The Eye of the Beholder’). I’ve also used episodes as a quick, fun, shared experience for us to look at setting, conflict, and/or theme.” —Jacky B.

The Universe

Discover the secrets of the universe: from black holes to distant planets.

What Netflix shows, movies, or documentaries do you use in your classroom? Come share in ourWeAreTeachers HELPLINE group on Facebook. 

Plus, the best TED Talks to spark student discussion.A

Posted by Hannah Hudson

Hannah Hudson is the editorial director of WeAreTeachers. You can follow her on Twitter at @hannahthudson or on Facebook here. Email her at hannah@weareteachers.com.

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