Jun 01

Movies & TV Shows Children Watch in China

Author: Bri Rodriguez-Cancio

I polled teachers here at Jump! Immersion School to compile this list of movies & television shows for children in Mandarin Chinese--this is what children watch in China. Again, it is a work in progress, so input is gladly accepted!

(Pictured is a scene from an episode of the series"Pleasant Sheep & Big Bad Wolf".)

Note: You can find these on YouTube. It's best to preview or talk to your child's Mandarin teacher for the "green light."

Preschool & Up

    English Name
Format Mandarin Name Pinyin Topic
    "3 Monks" (movie)
Cartoon 三个和尚 sān gè héshang Shows teamwork. 1 monk comes down the mountain to gather water; 2 monks shoulder the burden together, but what do you do with 3 monks? You fight!
    "Baby Tadpole Looks for Its Mother" (movie)
Cartoon 小蝌蚪找妈妈 xiǎo kēdǒu zhǎo māma Tadpole asks animal friends who is his mother. Shows life cycle of frog.
    "Pleasant Sheep & Big Bad Wolf" (TV series)
Cartoon 喜羊羊和灰太狼 xǐ yáng yáng hé huī tài láng Mr. and Mrs. Wolf have one idea on their minds—eat the sheep! The sheep create ingenious ways to escape Wolf's traps. Discusses community, teamwork, etc.
    "Big Head Son, Little Head Dad" (TV series)
Cartoon; at least 150 episodes 大头儿子,小头爸爸 dàtóu érzi , xiǎo tóu bàba Good for preschool & elementary school crowd.Discusses community, family.

Elementary School, 7-12 years

    English Name
Mandarin Name Pinyin Topic
    Changjiang Qihao
长江七号 chángjiāng qī hào A coming of age story about a boy, his father and a small alien. Boy is raised by his dad who is absent for many hours due to work. A kind teacher and an alien show the boy what is important in life.

Middle School, 15+ years for economic and cultural themes

    English Name
Mandarin Name Pinyin
    Not One Less
一个都不能少 yīgè dōu bùnéng shǎo
    The Way Home
回家 huíjiā
    Beautiful Mother
漂亮妈妈 piàoliang māma

*Older kids in China will watch Japanese anime translated into Chinese.

Be sure to also check out our list of movie classics Jump! Immersion teachers grew up watching in Spanish!