Chances are if you grew up sometime in the latter half of the 20th century, your childhood was filled with amazing children’s television programs created solely for the entertainment of kids. Live-action kids shows are nothing new, which is why everyone has their absolute favorites. Whether you fondly remember a show you grew up with or came to love one that your children enjoyed (though some of the best kids shows have been on the air for decades), chances are, you have an absolute favorite!
The best live-action shows for kids are easily some of the best series ever made for children - not just something that children could also watch, but made specifically with kids in mind - offering something different than cartoons. There are hundreds of amazing programs in this genre to choose from, to narrow it down, this list has highlighted the very best kids live-action series of them all, but not every show is created equally. Whether you appreciate and enjoy these series for their kid-friendly comedy sitcoms, or for the way they helped us all learn our A-B-Cs, these series are the best kids shows of all time.
This list is only focusing on non-animated, live-action, series not animated or cartoons - though puppets count as live action! - so please vote up your favorite, and don't forget to add any great live-action kids shows we missed.
The adventures of three siblings who are wizards in training.
- Premiered: October 12, 2007
A teenager hosts her own webcast show.
- Premiered: September 8, 2007
Twin boys and their mom live in a hotel suite in Boston.
- Premiered: March 18, 2005
Two dissimilar teenage boys become stepbrothers.
- Premiered: January 11, 2004
Mister Rogers creates a calm, safe place for preschoolers.
- Premiered: February 19, 1968
A coming-of-age comedy follows Cory Matthews as he juggles school, friends and romance.
- Premiered: September 24, 1993
Preparing children socially and academically for school.
- Premiered: November 10, 1969
Kermit, Miss Piggy and other Muppets welcome guest stars.
- Premiered: January 30, 1974
A puppy leaves clues for viewers to solve daily puzzles.
- Premiered: September 8, 1996
Adventures stimulate an interest in reading; host LeVar Burton.
- Premiered: July 27, 1983
Scientist explores various scientific concepts.
- Premiered: September 10, 1993
A girl discovers she is born to perform after filling in for her sister in a talent showcase.
- Premiered: March 27, 2010
Zack and Cody live on a cruise ship.
- Premiered: September 26, 2008
A teenager with special powers strives for a normal life.
- Premiered: September 20, 1996
Animation expresses the emotions of a teen.
- Premiered: January 12, 2001
A girl enrolls in a formerly all-boys school.
- Premiered: January 9, 2005
Class clown Louis Stevens lives in his older sister's daunting shadow.
- Premiered: June 16, 2000
Average kids are placed in a weird alternate reality, where they face frightening scenarios.
- Premiered: November 3, 1995
Teams compete to win prizes by answering trivia questions and facing an obstacle course.
- Premiered: June 25, 2018
Young actors perform in comedy sketches.
- Premiered: April 16, 1994
Lovable teenager Zack Morris leads his pals on adventures at California's Bayside High School.
- Premiered: November 30, 1988
Scary stories of American folklore, told by members of "The Midnight Society.".
- Premiered: July 16, 1992
A race of short, furry creatures live a carefree existence in a complex network of magical caves.
- Premiered: January 10, 1983
The Electric Company is an educational American children's television series that was directed by Bob Schwartz, Henry Behar and John Tracy, written by Christopher Cerf, Jeremy Steven and John ...more
- Premiered: 1971
Five teenagers call on ancient powers to defend the Earth from evil.
- Premiered: August 28, 1993