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I’m amazed by how little television my kids watch compared to when I was their age. Instead of network tv or cable networks, they watch shows on YouTube and Netflix. My tweens prefer anime shows and gaming YouTubers.
Our kids have way more entertainment options than I did growing up. My family didn’t cable, but my cousins had it. Whenever I was at their house, I soaked up as much as I could. We basically watched whatever was on. There was no DVR, no on-demand television. Definitely no streaming services.
Being able to watch my tweens’ favorite anime shows has helped our family spend more quality time together. These shows are surprisingly deep. The storylines are exciting, and the characters are multidimensional. Not to mention that their fave shows have strong female characters.
Anime Shows My Tweens Love
Not only do I find the shows engaging, our dinner conversation is peppered with plotline speculation, characters’ motivation, and what should have happened instead. I love seeing my kids’ brains processing all this and analyzing anime they love. Some of our conversations have gotten quite heated as theories were tossed around.
Yo-Kai Watch: This one is the silliest anime on the list, but one of the first ones my kids really got into. Young Nate stumbles upon a small capsule that allows him to see Yo-kai, Japanese folk creatures and ghosts. These magical beings influence the humans around them. The series follows Nate’s misadventures with the often goofy Yo-kai. If your kids enjoy this series, Nintendo has Yo-Kai Watch games for 3DS. Streaming on Netflix
RWBY: My daughter discovered RWBY (pronounced Ruby) from a friend, who called it Harry Potter with giant monsters. SOLD! She got her brother hooked first, then the parents. RWBY follows a group of girls in a legendary academy where they learn to fight monsters. The storyline goes much, much deeper as the characters learn of their past, fight to save their world, and learn to get along with each other. We binged watched it for the past few weeks to prepare for the new season starting in a couple of weeks. Available on YouTube
RWBY Chibi: When RWBY gets too dark, we take a break by watching RWBY Chibi. These comedy shorts reimagines the very serious RWBY characters as cute little chibis. They play pranks on each other and other hilarious shenanigans. Available on YouTube
Fullmetal Alchemist: Based on a manga series by the same title, this anime is about two brothers on a journey to find a philosopher’s stone. They’ve learned Alchemy, a science that allows them to create anything they desire. Except they are forbidden to transmuting humans and gold. With powers like that, it’s obvious that things can go horribly wrong. Streaming on Netflix.
Fairy Tail: This action packed anime follows teenager Lucy, who wants to join a notorious magical Fairy Tail Guild. She meets her best friend and the two are sent on many missions for the guild. Streaming on Netflix and Crunchy Roll.
Glitter Force & Glitter Force Doki Doki: In both series, a group of tween girls learn that they’re legendary superheroes. Their mission is to save earth from super villains. They have special tools such as rings and make-up cases that help them activate their powers. Even though both shows are fairly light, the main theme of teamwork and friendship are great for kids. Streaming on Netflix and YouTube.
Streaming to our tv
This belies my age, but I hate watching tv shows on my phone or my laptop. I want to sit on my couch and view shows on my 32″ television. As you’ve seen, most of the anime shows my tweens love are streamed either through YouTube or Netflix.
I’m adding a Chromecast to our family wishlist. With this small device, we can send our entertainment from our phones right to our tv with just a tap! It’s not just your smartphone, but connects to a variety of laptops. It works with over 2000 apps such as Netflix, YouTube, and HBO Now.
Whatever shows, movies, or YouTube videos you watch on your phone can be sent to your tv through Chromecast. It plugs into the HDMI port on your television and connects to your home’s router. Those with a Google Home can connect the two devices to hands-free tv. Just tell your Google Home what you want to watch and voila!
The best part? It’s very affordable. Definitely less expensive than a new tv or smart blu-ray player.
Once we get our Chromecast, it’ll be easier to have family anime night with our tweens!
What tv shows do your tweens enjoy?