Kids’ Activities: Audio Books and Podcasts

Audio books and podcasts

Keeping kids happily engaged while parents are working at home takes a lot of different activities in a day. And those activities have to be carefully chosen to promote independent play. This profile is one in a  series of kids’ activities that need little adult help but are fun for kids of all ages.

Audio Books

Benefits: Listening to audio books promotes a love of literature while keeping kids engages for hours.

Age range: Preschool to teens
Number of children: One or more
Type of activity: fun for one, books, indoor activity


Maybe you think of audio books as a kids activity just good for entertaining in the car, but they are far more useful than that to the average work-at-home mom.

Listening is not something that most kids are automatically good at. It is a skill has to be learned and practiced. An as with just about anything, the more fun it is the more kids will want to "practice" it. Podcasts and audiobooks make listening fun because they can delve into the subjects that interest them--often at a level more advanced than their reading skills.

Listening to an audio book can keep a kid quietly engaged for hours as it helps teach language skills such as listening comprehension, vocabulary and pronunciation. And like wordless children's books, they can instill a love of literature before a child can read as well as help a teenager discover the classics.


If you take audio books out of your local library or purchase them, you may need a CD player or maybe even a cassette player. However, many libraries now have audio books available for download.

Headphones help keep kids focused on the audio book. However, if you have more than one child, it is nice for them to share the experience of the story together rather, so playing it aloud may be more appropriate in that case.

You can upload CDs on to your computer to play on an MP3 player, but that is time consuming.

Keep in Mind:

Interest in and attention span for audio books varies by age. The youngest listener may need some adult interaction to stay focused. Audio books shouldn’t replace reading, but while you’re working is not the time to compel new or reluctant reader to tackle a difficult book.

More on Audio Books and Podcasts:

  • Podcasts Kids Love
  • Audio Books by Age
  • Favorite Audiobooks for Children
  • What Are Your Favorite Children's Audio Books?
  • Free Audio Books


Related Kids Activities:

  • Reading
  • Keeping a Journal
  • Listening to Music


For a wide range of ages, these kids’ activities promote independence and teach kids to find their own fun...something a work-at-home mom appreciates. See other kids’ activities in this series.

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