Our guide to freebie online viewing for children

Family watching TV

We've compiled our favourite fee online TV streaming services for children.  Perfect to check out when you need a break from running around outside. 

Free is good! And there’s now a vast array of entertaining online TV available for children which is free for the asking. 

Of course, it's important to balance active time with screen time, but when you've been busy outside and need a break, you might like to check out some of our favourites. 

1. Heihei

This is the place to go for top quality ad-free New Zealand content.  Heihei features not only TV shows, but also find Kiwi games and music.  It has a great range of shows in Te Reo Māori and aims to provide a place for children to see and hear themselves celebrated.  There’s some really quirky, entertaining and educational material here. www.heihei.co.nz

2. NZ on Screen 

This is the online showcase for New Zealand television, film, music video and web series.  Almost any Kiwi TV or film ever made, can be found among the more than 4,000 titles available on this site. And they’re all free-to-view. You’ll find gems such as:

  • Kārearea (a children’s documentary short about NZ’s native falcon)
  • Deepwater Haven, a kidult series set in the Hauraki Gulf
  • William Shatner’s A Twist in the Tale, a sci-fi series
  • The Tribe, one of the most successful shows shot in NZ
  • Terry and the Gunrunners, a children’s drama based around 12-year-old Terry Teo.

And there’s lots more! We’re sure you’ll find something to suit your tastes, so, take a look, and line-up your favourites. https://www.nzonscreen.com

3. NZ on Air

This is the organisation that funds the production of New Zealand TV, film, video, music and web series.  You can find links to the latest material they’ve funded, including a range of kids’ shows, new music and web series. 

There’s some really fascinating shows exploring Kiwi culture and identity. https://www.nzonair.govt.nz/watch-and-listen/

4.   Maori TV on Demand

This is a great site to get your Te Reo content, but it also features a lot more. 

There’s a great range of movies; some excellent music featuring young Kiwi singers; and some more unusual sports, including Waka Ama and hunting. https://www.maoritelevision.com/tv/on-demand

5.   Beamafilm

If you’re a member of the Auckland or Wellington Public Libraries then you can access the content on this site for free. 

It features a wide array of award-winning documentaries, independent films, and film festival favourites. It's a great site to extend your viewing or to access some more unusual options. https://beamafilm.com/

6.   KanopyKids

If you have a public library card, you can access the collection of films featured on KanopyKids. It features films and other content which is available in your public library, except you can watch at home for free. There’s a great selection here, especially for younger kids.   https://www.kanopy.com/   

7.   OverDrive

If you’re an Auckland or Christchurch Public Library member, you can access content on OverDrive.  There’s a great range of options for kids – everything from  “How to” videos to documentaries to homework help and of course kitten videos!  Check it out: https://auckland.overdrive.com/library/video?_ga=2.68688529.1478685506.1578256267-304893621.1572905597


You may have some other ideas so please feel free to share with us and we can let everyone in the Growing Up team know about your favourites. Drop us a line at contact@growingup.co.nz