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TV That Promotes Self-Control

Developing character strengths and life skills is essential to kids' overall growth and success. These TV shows help kids learn the value of paying attention to (and managing) their thoughts, feelings, and impulses. The character strength of self-control surfaces in these titles by being intrinsic to the story and being repeated several times in the actions of a lead character, and it "wins" over character flaws such as recklessness and impulsiveness. (See even more movies and TV shows that promote self-control.)

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Puffin Rock Poster Image

Puffin Rock

age 3+

Young bird's adventures celebrate curiosity, relationships.

Network: Netflix (2015)
Super Monsters Poster Image

Super Monsters

age 4+

Kindly monsters model positive behavior for preschoolers.

Network: Netflix (2017)
VeggieTales in the City Poster Image

VeggieTales in the City

age 5+

City life teaches moral lessons in sweet animated series.

Network: Netflix (2017)
I Love Lucy Poster Image

I Love Lucy

age 6+

Classic clowning from comic genius; for all ages.

Network: Syndicated , TV Land (1951)
Nutri Ventures Poster Image

Nutri Ventures

age 6+

Food-themed adventure series promotes healthy eating habits.

Network: Hulu (2010)
Spirit Riding Free Poster Image

Spirit Riding Free

age 7+

Courage, adventure, and a great role model in sweet series.

Network: Netflix (2017)
Boy Meets World Poster Image

Boy Meets World

age 10+

A boy deals with friends and girls in classic tween sitcom.

Network: Disney Channel (1993)
Champions Poster Image


age 12+

Great gags, fun characters on inclusive sitcom throwback.

Network: NBC (2018)
The Flash Poster Image

The Flash

age 12+

Arrow spin-off tells lighter tale of likable hero.

Network: CW (2014)
The Simpsons Poster Image

The Simpsons

age 12+

Clever, fast-paced cartoon with edgy humor.

Network: Fox (1989)
A Student's Guide to Your First Year of College Poster Image

A Student's Guide to Your First Year of College

age 12+

Relatable, well-rounded series tackles college prep topics.

Network: YouTube (2019)
Eat. Race. Win. Poster Image

Eat. Race. Win.

age 13+

Positive messages, impressive efforts in fun foodie series.

Network: Amazon Prime Video (2018)
Elementary Poster Image


age 14+

Smart Sherlock drama is a great choice for mature teens.

Network: CBS (2012)
The Fosters Poster Image

The Fosters

age 14+

Heartwarming drama about foster teens and their two moms.

Network: Freeform (2013)
Freaks and Geeks Poster Image

Freaks and Geeks

age 14+

Stellar teen dramedy explores angst, experimentation.

Network: Syndicated (1999)
Heroes Poster Image


age 14+

Hero-driven drama is "super" for teens and up.

Network: NBC (2006)
The Office Poster Image

The Office

age 14+

Workplace spoof is hilarious but filled with mature humor.

Network: NBC , Syndicated (2005)
Recovery Road Poster Image

Recovery Road

age 14+

Teen-in-rehab drama has realistic plot, great characters.

Network: Freeform (2016)
Undeclared Poster Image


age 14+

First-rate college dramedy has drinking, sexy stuff.

Network: Fox (2001)
Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Poster Image

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

age 16+

Thrilling update of spooky comic ramps up teen empowerment.

Network: Netflix (2018)