This is a list of notable events, premieres, releases, series cancellations and endings, and other business ventures for Nickelodeon in the year 1996.
- March 2 - Space Cases
- March 16 - The Mystery Files of Shelby Woo
- July 15 - Kenan and Kel airs it pilot episode; the series would begin regularly airing on October 12th
- September 8 - Blue's Clues
- October 7 - Hey Arnold!
- October 11 - KaBlam!
- July 8 - Rocko's Modern Life season 4
- September 15 - Aaahh!!! Real Monsters season 3
- October 8 - The Secret World of Alex Mack season 3
- November 16 - All That season 3
- December 6 - Rugrats season 4
- November 24 - Rocko's Modern Life
- December 28 - The Adventures of Pete & Pete
- July 10 - Harriet the Spy, the first feature film from Nickelodeon Movies, is released. The Hey Arnold! pilot is shown right before the film in theaters.
- The Ren & Stimpy Show comic book is cancelled.
- November 26 - All That: The Album
- January 30 - The Secret World of Alex Mack: In the Nick of Time
- October 1
- Rugrats: A Baby's Gotta Do What a Baby's Gotta Do (Paramount reissue)
- Rugrats: Angelica the Divine (Paramount reissue)
- Rugrats: Chuckie the Brave (Paramount reissue)
- Rugrats: Tommy Troubles
- Rugrats: Phil and Lil Double Trouble
- Rugrats: Tales from the Crib (Paramount reissue)
- Herb Scannell becomes the network's president, replacing long-time president Geraldine Laybourne, who left for Disney to run children's programming at ABC and the Disney Channel.
- Following Viacom's purchase of Paramount Communications, and the expiration of their contract with Sony Wonder, Nickelodeon moves the home video license for their shows to Paramount Home Video.
- After a two-year hiatus, Rugrats resumes production.