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Podcasts for Parents

This week: space sharks and the ethics of posting photos of your children.


I have listened to and tremendously enjoyed podcasts for many years. Now, as a father of two boys, ages four and two, I find that podcasts are a great resource in two ways: As a dad, I find solace, guidance and inspiration in great episodes. And for my kids, podcasts offer a great non-screen entertainment option (my dream is that my four-year-old will someday put on headphones and listen to one instead of waking me up at 6 a.m. — a work in progress, I'll keep you posted).

I think other parents might feel this way too — if only they could find the time to sort through all the dozens and dozens of new episodes that come out every week, across all sorts of platforms, and then find a way to easily listen wherever they are. Because the number of podcasts out there can be overwhelming,  last year I created Pastime, a website and app that features curated lists of podcasts, including Podcasts for Parents in which I select two new podcasts each week — one for parents, one for kids — that I think particularly stand out. 

For kids, I seek out stories that meet three criteria: are age-appropriate for those around 10 and under; are well produced, with voices that are easy to understand and lively; and whether fiction or fact, possess storylines that are compelling but not too complex. As for adults, I just select what I think are particularly great episodes of high-quality podcasts, typically with some kind of connection to parenthood.

FOR KIDS (all ages)
The Show about Science: How to Become an Astronaut (13 min)

Six-year-old Nate hosts The Show About Science, in which he interviews scientists from around the globe. Yes, he's a podcast host in the first grade who is also interested in architecture (!). In this episode Nate interviews Mike Mongo, author of The Astronaut Instruction Manual, to get the lowdown on important topics for aspiring astronauts, including the existence of space sharks and dolphins. Who knew? 

Note to Self: Should You Post Pictures of Your Kids Online? (23 minutes)

Note to Self is a podcast that considers the many questions that result from living in a profoundly digital age. Topics range from technology to feminism to relationships to gaming. This episode asks: As social media plays an increasingly prominent role in our lives, is it okay to post photos of our littles ones online? Is it ethical? Will they be mad at us later? 

Have you listened to something great lately? I'd love to hear about it. Reach out via the Pastime Facebook page, on Twitter @pastiming or by email, andrew@pastimeapp.com

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