Minutephysics

TV review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Minutephysics TV Poster Image
Complex STEM topics explained with simple sketches.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

Physics -- combined with helpful drawings -- can help make huge topics a little more understandable, even for non-scientists.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Henry Reich and Neil deGrasse Tyson's enthusiasm for physics and related topics is genuine and infectious.

Violence

A few videos discuss war- and bomb-related science.

Sex
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Minutephysics is a science YouTube channel that tackles some big physics- and math-related topics through hand-sketched drawings, audio explanations, and videos. Minutephysics was created by physicist and digital media artist Henry Reich, who hosts the videos and draws the illustrations. Topics range from everyday wonder questions ("Is it better to walk or run in the rain?") to engineering process videos ("How Airplanes Are Made") to abstract subjects, such as "Time Travel in Fiction" and "A Brief History of Everything," which features famous astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, who collaborates with Reich on some MInutephysics videos. 

Please note: Our reviewers watch between one and two hours of content to determine the general appropriateness of each YouTube channel. Some channels contain more variety within their content than others; we do our best to capture the channel's overall subject and tone to help parents make the best choice for their family. We recommend parent co-viewing of YouTube content for kids under 13.

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What's the story?

MINUTEPHYSICS features brief videos -- most with hand-drawn visuals -- that explain complex science and math topics. Video examples include fascinating questions (How Long to Fall Through the Earth?), practical topics (How Airplanes Are Made), and big subjects (A Brief History of Everything feat. Neil deGrasse Tyson). There are myth- and misconception-busting videos, and really complex theoretical topics here, too.

Is it any good?

This is an excellent science channel for older tweens, teens, and adults who've already learned foundational math and science concepts. Physicist Henry Reich does a terrific job with the visuals and audio explainers on Minutephysics; he takes viewers along on some fascinating field trips, and he collaborates with famous astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson on some videos. The complexity of the topics presented shouldn't dissuade adults, teens, or tweens from watching. Even if not everything Reich presents is totally understandable, the takeaways are solid enough to make anyone walk away feeling more knowledgeable about how the world works, and a little smarter, too.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how using visuals to learn about complex subjects can help students understand them more clearly. Although the audio explanations are important, Minutephysics relies heavily on hand drawings, images, and video to explain the big stuff. How do you learn best?

  • Watch some of the Minutephysics videos about everyday, relatable topics  -- such as solar panels, weather, and cars -- to help tweens and teens understand how physics applies to everyday life.

TV details

For kids who love STEM

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