10 Anime That Are Surprisingly Educational

The most memorable anime series tend to inform as well as entertain, be it the popular 2022 series Healer Girl and its medical knowledge or My Dress Up-Darling keen fashion sense. While many avid and casual fans of the form tune in to be amused, they often learn something about a large swath of topics they previously had no idea about. While it's true that most anime series teach moral lessons relating to ethical quandaries, several others focus on scholastic and disciplinary edutainment to get their points across.

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Whether astronomy, gastronomy, economics, athletics, aeronautics, mixology, or another specific subject, anime fans can soak up a ton of knowledge in the least expected series.

Food Wars (2015 - )

Soma presents a dish in Food Wars

As most anime fans know, food plays a massive role in how characters nourish their soul and energize their spirit. One of the most comprehensive culinary anime shows includes Food Wars!, a brilliant series set in the elite Totsuki Culinary Institute in Tokyo, where only a select handful of the best Food Wars chefs demonstrate enough skill to graduate each year. Vicariously, fans can learn a lot through the characters.

Aside from imparting wise lessons on what it takes to become a top chef and exploring the protocols of the food service industry, the show gets into granular detail about gastronomical recipes and their scientific breakdown. Aspiring chefs can learn to prepare such fancy dishes as Chaliapin Steak Don, Eggs Benedict, Rainbow Terrine, Apple Risotto, Sumire Karaage Rolls, and more.

Silver Spoon (2013 - 2014)

Hachiken holds a dish over his head on Silver Spoon

For those looking to bone up on their agricultural knowledge in tandem with their culinary skill set, check out the acclaimed anime series Silver Spoon. The series follows Hachiken, a stressed urbanite who moves to a rural location to learn all about farming at an agriculture academy.

While much of the humor derives from Hachiken's fish-out-of-water scenario, the show is surprisingly insightful into where food comes from, and how it is grown, harvested, and distributed. The show also offers trenchant glimpses into the differences between industrial factory farming and organic DIY agriculture, morally advocating for the latter as the most self-sustaining way to grow one's own food supply.

Moyashimon (2007)

Tadayasu plugs his nose on Moyashimon

While Cells At Work is a worthy anime for beginners, it's a deliberately educational anime series whose lessons about blood cells aren't all that surprising. Instead, fans should check out Moyashimon, a shockingly detailed series that follows Tadayasu, a young student who enrolls in Agricultural Academy and learns the ins and outs of bacteria and virology as it relates to food consumption.

Children are often taught that germs are bad, gross, contagious, and something to avoid. However, Moyashimon is incredibly candid about the importance of certain bacteria for the promotion of gut health. The show is a profound eye-opener about the human immune system as it directly relates to the food one puts into the body, eliminating the inherent fears relating to germs, bacteria, and viruses.

Spice And Wolf (2008 - 2009)

Kraft and Holo hold bags of apples on Spice and Wolf

On the surface, Spice and Wolf traces Kraft Lawrence, a young merchant woman who travels medieval Europe selling his wares with her divine wolf companion Holo. Digging deeper, the show is a sweeping tutorial on the economy of mercantilism back when bartering and bargaining were much easier to understand than in today's high-finance Wall Street culture.

As Kraft and Holo travel from one village to another, they transact several business deals that are incredibly detailed about how the economy in the middle-ages functioned, while also drawing a direct lineage to how modern economies work. The evolutionary depiction of supply and demand, market trends, speculation, and currency trading is extremely fascinating and is sure to teach even the most inexperienced person the basics of business.

Bartender (2006)

bartender-anime

At first blush, Bartender is about the spiritual counsel Ryu Sasakura provides to his Eden Hall barroom patrons in Tokyo's Ginza District. A closer look reveals an intricately detailed glimpse into the world of professional mixology, with Ryu explaining the cool chemistry behind each customer's favorite cocktail.

With each episode concentrating on a new cocktail recipe and how to perfect it, fans will instantly walk away with the practical knowledge of how to be the best bartender they can be. Moreover, Ryu imparts uplifting life lessons to his clients in between mixing and pouring cocktails that are sure to soothe the soul and expand the mind at once.

Shirobako (2014 - )

The class sits around a table on Shirobako

While Blue Period is another worthy art-based educational anime, Shirobako is a fantastic way to learn about the anime-making process itself. The series traces Aoi, a talented art student who gets an eye-opening dose of reality when she gets a job as a PA at a famed animation studio.

Proving that achieving one's dream takes hard work, patience, resilience, and the ability to overcome rejection, Shirobako is incredibly candid about how the best-laid plans don't always pan out. It's also a terrific tool to learn about the practical, hands-on tactility of creating anime by hand from beginning to end.

Hyouge Mono (2011 - )

Susuke holds a teacup on Hyouge Mono

As every student knows, history class can put a person right to sleep. Thankfully, the wildly entertaining anime Hyouge Mono makes the history of Feudal Japan incredibly accessible and palatable for viewers of all ages. A comprehensive and realistic depiction of Japan's war-torn history relating to the value of tea, Hyouge Mono goes the extra mile where most historical fantasy anime stop short.

A fascinating story of palace intrigue, political ambition, and warlord Sasuke Furuta's dogged attempt to remain loyal to his tea ceremony while climbing the ranks of the caste system, the anime is surprisingly keen on historical accuracy. As such, fans will come away learning something they never knew while being consistently entertained.

Haikyuu!! (2014 - 2020)

Hinata prepares to spike a volleyball on Haikyuu

For athletes looking to learn about teamwork, sportsmanship, and the health benefits of exercise, the beloved fitness and sports anime Haikyuu is a wonderful anime to glean knowledge from. The story follows Hinata, a pint-sized volleyball enthusiast who joins his middle school team, only to humbly climb the ranks after being defeated by a star rival.

Beyond teaching viewers the machinations of how volleyball works, the show is really a lesson on perseverance, never giving up, improving through hard work and dedication, and ultimately how to cooperate with others in a team setting. The lessons can be applied to life as well as athletic competition, making Haikyuu twice as valuable in its ability to educate.

Dr. Stone (2019-)

Senku and Taija mix a potion on Dr. Stone

Dr. Stone is another shockingly educational anime that teaches viewers a wide array of subjects for practical use in real life. The plot follows Senku, a boy who awakes after being trapped in stone for eons and decides to rebuild society with his friend Taiju.

Whether Senku is explaining certain technological processes like cell phones, formulating cola and ramen, making gunpowder, antibiotics, sulfonamides, and more, fans will come away from Dr. Stone a far more intelligent anime fan with new knowledge on a swath of topics that have lead to humanity's evolution.

Space Brothers (2012 - )

The brothers hold their dog before planet Earth on Space Brothers

When all the Earthly subjects under the sun are exhausted, it's time to head to the cosmos with Space Brothers to learn about aeronautics, space travel, and what an astronaut's job really entails. The series follows two brothers who spot a UFO in the sky and instantly become fascinated with outer space. When the older sibling Mutta joins the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency, the brothers get an invaluable crash course in hands-on astronomy.

With roughly 100 episodes, Space Brothers is extremely comprehensive in its ability to teach viewers about the ins and outs of space travel. However, the show is also about the value of persistence, conscientious work habits, the bonds of brotherhood, and how the vast expanse of the cosmos is really not that different from life on Earth.

NEXT: Top 10 Anime Characters With Fire Powers

2022-09-10T21:48:35.000Z

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