Getting your kid to do school work can be a chore. Video games, television and endless content on YouTube can dominate their attention span, leaving little motivation for anything educational. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be that hard – you simply need to find the right kinds of learning-based activities. There are interactive experiences available online that will engage kids in educational content, but in a non-traditional way. And a lot of them are free to use.
These websites provide content for kindergarteners all the way to high schoolers. Core subjects are widely covered in a variety of ways such as videos, games, quizzes, interactive tours and much more that will actually make learning feel exciting.
Here are seven websites to check out with your kids.
Learning at home is easy thanks to Scholastic. The Scholastic website features an online learning program, with courses spanning from kindergarten to ninth grade. You can keep students busy with projects, reading and more interactive techniques. Scholastic has four weeks¹ worth of learning activities, including a daily reading quest.
If you’re running out of things to do with your kids, you can also check out Scholastic’s play starters. They give parents creative ways to engage their kids in games and activities that also serve an educational purpose.
2. PBS Learning Media
PBS is known for its educational content, and now all of that content is easily accessible online. The network has an entire online learning section dedicated to kids. You can find interactive lessons² that cover students of any age, from kindergarten to 12th grade. There are a variety of lessons covering four main class subjects: English, science, math and social studies.
This interactive learning site is completely free to use. Students can learn through reading text, watching videos and educational activities assigned at the end of lessons so they can reflect on what they learned.
3. E-Learning For Kids
For students aged kindergarten to sixth grade, check out the e-learning for kids³ website. It’s an interactive learning program that provides in-depth educational content in an entertaining way. In addition to the core academic subjects, e-learning for kids also offers life skill lessons. For example, younger kids can learn the importance of emotions and communications. Older kids can take interactive lessons about growing bodies and choosing the right career.
4. TIME For Kids
Not only does TIME Magazine write editorial content for adults, but it also has a magazine entirely dedicated to kids. The subscription-based content is available for e-reading⁴ on the computer. You’ll find articles that are written at three different reading levels, so kids of all ages can be educated on current events.
Students can read according to their grade level from kindergarten to sixth grade. Along with the articles, you can find discussion questions, worksheets and quizzes. Many of the articles can also be read aloud so kids can easily comprehend them independently.
5. Visit Museums Online
There are thousands of museums around the world that display everything from art, historic items, animal displays and so much more. Now, many of them have interactive online tools for kids of all ages. They can experience the museum without having to leave the house.
Here are three museums with exciting online activities.
This famous museum in Washington, D.C. has a lot of content for kids to explore. From science to history to art, you can browse the Smithsonian’s online selection⁵ and learn about history in a virtual way.
Online, you can also watch live video streams of the National Zoo, so kids can take a peek at what the pandas are up to anytime of day.
Royal Ontario Museum
Visiting this Canadian museum online offers a unique opportunity: kids can learn how to write their names in Egyptian hieroglyphs.⁶ It’s an hour-long, step-by-step activity that’s suitable for kids aged eight and up.
The Metropolitan Museum of Arts (Met)
The Met has taken the museum online in the most kid-friendly way. There’s a cartoon map⁷ that takes you around the gallery to learn fun facts, get project ideas and watch behind-the-scenes videos about the art. You can also hop in the “time machine” and browse art by era, as far back as 8000 to 2000 B.C.
6. Crash Course
Co-hosted by the authors (and brothers) John and Hank Green, Crash Course is a great way for tweens and teens to get engaged with education. The pair breaks down textbook learning into a fun and fast-paced YouTube video that’s actually entertaining to watch. Viewers have 22 courses⁸ to choose from that includes core learning subjects like English and history, along with some other entertaining courses about film studies and mythology.
7. NASA Learning Activities
Who better to teach your kids science than the experts at NASA? The space company has plenty of educational tools⁹ on its website, all of which engage students with engineering, math, science and technology all for free. There are activities ranging from kindergarten to high school students so it’s easy to find lessons appropriate for any age group. The available lessons teach students through games, videos, slideshows and projects.