TV That Inspires Compassion

Developing character strengths and life skills is essential to kids' overall growth and success. These TV shows help kids learn the value of caring about others and behaving toward them with affection, generosity, and concern. The character strength of compassion surfaces in these titles by being intrinsic to the story, being repeated several times in the actions of a lead character, and "wins" over character flaws such as intolerance. (See even more movies and TV shows that inspire compassion.)

Browse TV That Inspires Compassion

Sesame Street TV Poster Image
Classic show endures changes, but learning content remains.
Network: PBS
(2004)
(1969)
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Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood TV Poster Image
Excellent lessons from Mister Rogers' next generation.
Network: PBS Kids
(2012)
(2012)
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If You Give a Mouse a Cookie TV Poster Image
Beloved book characters entertain in delightful series.
Network: Amazon Prime Video
(2017)
(2017)
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Maya the Bee TV Poster Image
Gentle animated show has lessons about nature, friendship.
Network: Sprout
(2015)
(2012)
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Mister Rogers' Neighborhood TV Poster Image
Classic series gently promotes social skills, imagination.
Network: PBS
(2005)
(1968)
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Sheriff Callie's Wild West TV Poster Image
Friendly frontier town teaches kids about strong character.
Network: Disney Junior
(2013)
(2013)
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Sofia the First TV Poster Image
Spunky, well-rounded princess celebrates individuality.
Network: Disney Channel, Disney Junior
(2013)
(2012)
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Thomas & Friends: The Adventure Begins Movie Poster Image
Trains' sweet origin story promotes friendship, cooperation.
On DVD/Streaming
(Release Year: 2015)
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Thomas & Friends TV Poster Image
Thomas and his train friends huff and chuff around.
Network: PBS
(2005)
(1984)
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Doc McStuffins TV Poster Image
Excellent preschool series has positive messages for kids.
Network: Disney Junior
(2012)
(2012)
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Goldie & Bear TV Poster Image
Sweet preschool show blends fairy tale characters' stories.
Network: Disney Junior
(2015)
(2015)
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Lily's Driftwood Bay TV Poster Image
Girl's simple, homegrown adventures celebrate imagination.
Network: Sprout
(2014)
(2014)
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The Smurfs TV Poster Image
Little blue gnomes share, care, and learn.
Network: Boomerang
(2004)
(1981)
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Wishenpoof! TV Poster Image
Sweet magical series illustrates joys of helping others.
Network: Amazon Prime Video
(2015)
(2014)
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Dora and Friends: Into the City! TV Poster Image
School-age TV icon explores community service, friendship.
Network: Nickelodeon
(2014)
(2014)
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Mia and Me TV Poster Image
Fantasy series has positive themes, intimidating villains.
Network: Nick Jr., Nickelodeon
(2014)
(2014)
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My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic TV Poster Image
Sweet tales of friendship have great messages for kids.
Network: Discovery Family Channel
(2010)
(2010)
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Rainbow Brite TV Poster Image
'80s cartoon revival has excellent messages and role model.
Network: Online
(2015)
(2014)
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Vampirina TV Poster Image
Vivacious vampire girl's adventures promote tolerance.
Network: Disney Junior
(2017)
(2017)
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The Andy Griffith Show TV Poster Image
Cheery classic has positive, kid-friendly lessons.
Network: TV Land
(2005)
(1960)
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Doug TV Poster Image
Low-key '90s cartoon has good lessons for grade-schoolers.
Network: Nickelodeon
(2011)
(1991)
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Fraggle Rock TV Poster Image
Classic kids' series offers both big themes and big fun.
Network: Hulu, Discovery Family Channel
(2007)
(1983)
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Giver TV Poster Image
Kids' ideas become reality in inspiring volunteer builds.
Network: qubo
(2015)
(2012)
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The HALO Effect TV Poster Image
Compassionate teens inspire by helping others in fab docu.
Network: Nickelodeon
(2016)
(2016)
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The Dick Van Dyke Show TV Poster Image
Kennedy-era comedy series offers good family fun.
Network: Syndicated, TV Land
(2011)
(1961)
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Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman TV Poster Image
Endearing historical drama is a classic for families.
Network: Syndicated
(2009)
(1993)
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Gortimer Gibbon's Life on Normal Street TV Poster Image
Delightful family series with outstanding positive themes.
Network: Amazon Prime Video
(2014)
(2014)
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Hey Arnold! TV Poster Image
Strong storytelling and characters mark worthwhile cartoon.
Network: Nickelodeon, Nicktoons
(2005)
(1996)
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Marvel's Spider-Man TV Poster Image
Likable interpretation plays up Spidey's human side.
Network: Disney XD
(2017)
(2017)
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The Waltons TV Poster Image
Beloved '70s family classic continues to win fans.
Network: Hallmark Channel, Syndicated
(2004)
(1972)
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When Calls the Heart TV Poster Image
Faith-based period drama has stellar female role models.
Network: Hallmark Channel
(2014)
(2014)
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Clarissa Explains It All TV Poster Image
Fun '90s show deals thoughtfully with coming-of-age issues.
Network: Nickelodeon
(2011)
(1991)
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Family Matters TV Poster Image
Urkel and company still offer lots of family fun.
Network: Freeform, Nickelodeon, Syndicated
(2005)
(1989)
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The Legend of Korra TV Poster Image
Strong heroine, positive messages make great fantasy series.
Network: Nickelodeon
(2012)
(2012)
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The Specials TV Poster Image
Webby-winning reality show encourages respect for diversity.
Network: OWN
(2014)
(2014)
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Andi Mack TV Poster Image
Heartwarming, diverse coming-of-age story best for tweens.
Network: Disney Channel
(2017)
(2017)
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Steven Universe TV Poster Image
Quirky cartoon values family, fun, and finding your purpose.
Network: Cartoon Network
(2013)
(2013)
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The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air TV Poster Image
Good-natured sitcom that the family can enjoy together.
Network: Nickelodeon, Syndicated, TeenNick
(2005)
(1990)
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Designing Women TV Poster Image
Sassy social commentary for teens and up.
Network: Lifetime Television
(2005)
(1986)
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The Golden Girls TV Poster Image
Funny senior housemates crack wise; teens and up.
Network: Lifetime Television
(2005)
(1985)
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It Gets Better TV Poster Image
Honest accounts of LGBTQ life inspire hope for teens.
Network: Logo, MTV
(2012)
(2012)
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M*A*S*H TV Poster Image
Stellar war dramedy classic mixes humor, pathos.
Network: Hallmark Channel, Syndicated
(2005)
(1972)
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Scrubs TV Poster Image
Goofy medical comedy with heart; for older teens.
Network: ABC, Syndicated
(2005)
(2001)
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Pushing Daisies TV Poster Image
Quirky drama mixes murder, fantasy, romance.
Network: ABC
(2007)
(2007)
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World of Jenks TV Poster Image
Docu offers thoughtful insight into the world of others.
Network: MTV
(2010)
(2010)
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ER TV Poster Image
ER
Excellent, but the ER is no place for children.
Network: NBC
(2005)
(1994)
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Grey's Anatomy TV Poster Image
Medical soap is gripping -- and occasionally graphic.
Network: ABC
(2005)
(2005)
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Parenthood TV Poster Image
Quality drama charts the pros, cons of family togetherness.
Network: NBC
(2010)
(2010)
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