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Early Learning/Early Childhood

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Enchanted Learning

Children are human, too

Preschoolers' Manifesto

 

Enchanted Learning We've linked to EL for years, now we're putting a homemade logo in with our "little ones" sites on this page. We want to publicly acknowledge the power of their awesomeness! "Curriculum Material Online -- Over 35,000 Web Pages and over 1,000,000 subscriptions!"

 

downloads tag If you haven't visited Educational Freeware lately, you should go see all their new freeware and download what you need/want. They have quality software for free! Of course, they also have online activities.

 

7 Fun Halloween Songs for Kids from Sweet Happy Life These are short easy songs for little ones and primary schoolers, gleaned from several preschool sites. They're cute and they let the kids wriggle about while singing.

 

The 25 Best Art Materials for Kids! "The 25 Best Art Materials for Kids! Including The Artful Parent's top 10 can't-live-without, all-time favorites." From Artful Parent. List includes things you know about and things you haven't thought of yet. This site has plenty of other good things as well.

 

40 iPad Apps for Reading Disabilities Parents of children with reading disabilities, and educators who work with learning disabled students, are always looking for new tools to help the kids meet their potential and work through their disability. This is a list of 40 iPad apps designed to meet the needs of learning disabled kids and beginning readers alike. The apps are sorted into Helps, Fundamentals, Reading, Writing, and Spelling. This article is posted at Educator Technology and Mobile Learning, where there are a lot more articles like this one.

 

New Site50 Halloween Craft Ideas For Preschool from No Time for Flashcards Crafty stuff for the younger set. Includes some math activities.

 

New Site75 TV Free Activities For Toddlers from No Time for Flashcards. Are you running out of things for your bored toddler(s) to do? Want new things that will encourage safe exploration while developing motor skills and problem skills, too? Are you out of ideas today? Then try these 75 safe and (mostly) non-messy activities! (We'd do #3 out in the yard.) There should* be something on here the kids will like. "Kid tested, mother approved." (* Hey, dealing with toddlers here!)

 

New SiteSpinning gold star Activity Village  Here's a site from the UK that will help out parents and teachers. "Welcome to Activity Village, where you will find coloring pages, home school resources, educational resources, kids crafts, puzzles, printables, Sudoku for kids and much, much more ... Click on the menu bars above to explore over 3000 pages of activities to help you keep your kids busy!" Tons of coloring pages! The site has a popup to start, x it out or just subscribe.

 

Advanced Read-Alouds for Preschoolers A list of 12 well-known children's books to try with preschool kids, from Beyond the Cover. The goal is "to have their mind stretched and challenged, so they can retain and understand things that are more advanced than simple words written down on a book of pictures... This isn’t so easy, trying to find a bunch of books that are advanced for preschoolers, having a great and intriguing story line to keep the attention of your children, and isn’t twaddle. It took me a while to find these books…" If you have preschoolers, and you think they are ready for something a little more advanced, try these books!

 

Spinning Gold starRead Aloud SitesOur Read Alouds section has great stories for your littles!

Alphabet Match from Learning 4 Kids "Alphabet match is a fun hands-on activity for kids to help recognise and learn their alphabet letters. It is also a great opportunity to introduce upper case and lower case letters and match them in a fun puzzle like activity... You will need 26 bottle tops, a large sheet of paper, coloured makers and foam letters. These foam letters I picked up at our local craft shop and they have a sticky back which is great for sticking onto the bottle tops..." OK, you get the idea. Easy instructions, using readily available common things. Learning 4 Kids has a lot more of this sort of activity, for different ages and abilities.

 

Alphabet Song video from Sesame Street India Arie and Elmo sing the ABC song. Cute and instructional.

 

Download American Sign Language Learning Aid Link goes to the program page. Download the program here. This is the Windows version, there are others. "A set of programs designed to help the beginner ASL student learn ASL. It is composed of two parts: ASLLA-Dictionary and ASLLA-Fingerspeller. ASLLA-Dict allows the student to look up English->ASL sign. ASLLA-Fspell allows the beginner to practice seeing fingerspelling." Thanks to Andy Uehara, who wrote these programs and is deaf, if that matters to you. Cool. A short manual and other info may be found inside the unzipped program folder. Found it on Sourceforge.

BBC Education - Snapdragon - Tell the Time Cute little activity teaches the hours in English and Cymru(Welsh)! Kids can make the hands move.

Basic Shapes Video from Kids Math Games Online. "Learn about basic shapes with this great video for kids. Help children understand a range of important shapes such as triangles, circles, squares, hexagons and more. How many do you know? Check out the video and find out!"

Bembo's Zoo A nice little site to teach ABCs. Really good animation and sounds!

Billion-Story Building from What If?, a part of xkcd. "My daughter—age 4.5—maintains she wants a billion-story building. It turns out not only is that hard to help her appreciate this size, I am not at all able to explain all of the other difficulties you'd have to overcome." What If? makes a good effort to explain it to her like she's five (4 ½?). "If you make a building too big, the top part is heavy and it squishes the bottom part." Then drawings with circles and arrows, etc., are used to play with the idea, which really is interesting to see and read. Yes, there's physics, but mainly 5 year olds' physics.

 

BooBah from the UK. This site is for preschool folks. Lots of color and sound. Good fine motor skills training, using a mouse. Windows users will need to teach the difference between left and right clicking, though. Educational Freeware has an excellent writeup on them here, with screenshots.

 

Brain Teasers Here are 22 early learning games also suitable for Special Education use.  Memory Attention games "are designed to exercise the processes involved in attending to and remembering information."  Sound Discrimination games "work at training the basic fundamentals necessary for language, listening, and reading." Sounds like a novel and overdue approach.  (and the games are kinda fun)

 

Download Brain Workshop logo Brain Workshop "What if a simple mental exercise could improve your memory and intelligence? A recent study published in PNAS, an important scientific journal, shows that a particular memory task called Dual N-Back may actually improve working memory (short term memory) and fluid intelligence. This finding is important because fluid intelligence was previously thought to be unchangeable. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the dual n-back task also enhances focus and attention and may help improve the symptoms of ADHD/ADD. The game involves remembering a sequence of spoken letters and a sequence of positions of a square at the same time. Brain Workshop is a free open-source version of the Dual N-Back mental exercise. Easy download, easy install. Another SourceForge discovery.

 

Bug and Insect Crafts for Kids "How to Make Bug and Insect Crafts to use in Your Home School and Preschool. Insect Crafts, Science, and Creative Writing Learning Activities for Home School. Use 'nature bugs' in your science class to teach about insects and spiders, in your English class to promote creative writing or technical writing, and in your art class to promote creativity." Bunches of inexpensive kid-friendly craft projects. Make various insects, some spiders, and paper roly-polys (sowbugs, woodlouse). Everything's illustrated, with written instructions and parts lists, like a cookbook's recipes!

 

Downloads Childsplay "is a suite of educational games for young children." 14 games in all. We've used these with 5 - 8 year olds and the games are excellent! Free to you (GNU-GPL licensed) and ready to download and install. Another excellent effort from an independent programmer, courtesy of Sourceforge.

 

Cookie from Gudlidotcom "Provides Free online learning games, Educational lessons plans, Kids learning games, Free games for kids, Worksheets Etc. Gudli is the best free online games website including many categories like learning games, kids games, math games, puzzle games, science games etc. which are free to use for 'Early childhood Education' and 'pre-school Education' for kids.... Gudli is a unique online experience for kids where they enjoy learning. With our interactive educational games children develop skills in maths, logic, memory, words, creativity and more. Gudli is free, full of fun, easy to use and the ideal learning space for preschoolers to second grade kids." Well, the proof of the pudding and all that: all the activities are colorful, musical, and informative. There are plenty of games and videos, this is a great learning site and will make a fine addition to Good Sites for Kids. Thank you, Neeta Saini, for the email!

 

Crafts and Activities for Chinese New Year from Enchanted Learning is a page with both crafts and printables, plus information about the holiday. EL's usual excellent work here.

 

Netherlands flag Cyberkidz "is an educational platform for boys and girls in the age of 4 till 12 years. By playing the educational games, children will practise subjects they learn in elementary school (PK-5)." The games are sorted by year from age 4 to 12, using a sliding bar. There are dozens of fun, playable games in every curriculum category, with new ones being added. This is an excellent site from the Netherlands.

Dolch Word Lists from Jan Brett. "11 full-sized, printable lists with Jan Brett artwork." Great Jan Brett art, 20 words per page.

Dolch words page from Education Oasis. "Dolch "Basic Sight Words" are the 220 most frequently occurring words in children's books, excluding nouns. Because many of the words do not follow decoding rules, they cannot be sounded out. Thus, they are learned by sight. Dolch sight words comprise 52-75 percent of all words found in children's books." These can be printed out for your use.

Downloads Drawing for Children is a great, very cool, free download (Windows only) from the Netherlands. It says "drawing" but it has been used in computer labs for language arts, too! You can enter text and load .bmp files from Windows Paint. "Drawing for Children is a free drawing program for children with many nice options. The best way to learn to use it is simply to use it. There is though a document describing the use of the program. For more information, see the readme file."

EFL/ESL Games for Kids Online Free Interactive from TurtleDairy. "Our interactive EFL/ESL games and online activities teach kids letter recognition and writing in an easy, comprehensive manner. Preschoolers are introduced to phonics and rhyming words which help in early reading and writing skills. For more mature learners, we offer a wide range of vocabulary and grammar exercises." 13 pre-K, 27 K, 20 1st grade, and 18 2nd grade games.

 

 

Typical Eagle links entryEagles Internet Resources from the Grain Valley School District, Grain Valley, Missouri. This is vast! A great and awesome resource for any school or district. Their lists of sites are literally too long to list in this space! Here's a list of SOME of the main topics (academics only - there are more). Be aware that each is broken out into many subtopics. Each subtopic has a list of relevant sites.

  • Young Eaglet (preschool and Kindergarten)
  • Language Arts, Reading (listed separately)
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • Student and Teacher Resources (listed separately)
  • Once again, we urge you to "look upon these wonders, O Unbeliever, and be amazed."

    Union Jack Early Learning "This page features early learning websites for young toddlers and pre-schoolers. Fun ways to introduce your toddler to their abc, 123, shapes and colours with great games, downloads and flash cards." Also sites for older children. There are some wonderful things on here, many of which were new to us! Part of allkids, a fine learning & shopping site from the UK.

     

    Early Learning from Learning Planet. Eighteen games cover ABC and 123 order, upper and lowercase matching, early telling time, early money.

     

    Flag of NetherlandsEducational games from Digipuzzle.net. "On this page you can find the overview of the educational games from Digipuzzle.net. All games can be played full screen on a PC, a tablet (Android Tablets, iPad, etc) or mobile phone (Android, iOS)." Here's a diverse group of kids' games, from numeracy to multiplication, with some early language arts, some geography, time, hieroglyphics, and some money math. Here they are by subject with the number of games in parentheses:

  • Multiplication (8)
  • Addition (7)
  • Subtraction (2)
  • Fractions (3)
  • Learn to count (7)
  • Kindergarten games (2)
  • Language (3)
  • Topography USA (5)
  • Topography Europe (2)
  • Clocks (4)
  • History (2)
  • Money games (3)
  • A big Thank You to Marcel van de Wouw. These are nice!

     

    Encyclopedia Interactica is part of the incredible subscription-only Poisson Rouge (Red Fish) site. Here are 35 simple, well made activities for younger kids that track life cycles of frogs and butterflies, simple math, Pythagorean theorem, why aircraft wings lift weight, the orbits of planets, sizes of blue whales and 747s, solar panels, teeth, inner ears, warm and cold ocean currents; oh, there's so much - and all interactive!

    Free Worksheets for Kids from K-5 Learning. This is a commercial site with a good reputation. They offer quite a bit of free material. "Our website has free resources for preschool through grade 5 kids... We have:

  • math worksheets for grades 1-6, extensive and very organized
  • worksheets for preschool and kindergarten (letters, numbers, shapes and colors, phonics, etc.)
  • grammar worksheets
  • reading comprehension worksheets
  • cursive writing worksheets
  • over 25 multimedia reading and math lessons
  • Visitors can also download our ebook: How to Help Your Kids Succeed in School."
  • Mastering these worksheets would give students a solid foundation to build on. Thanks to Joy for her email.

    Fungooms This is just so great, wonderful things in the spirit of Poisson Rouge and BooBah but it's definitely in its very own realm of wonder. Can't wait to try this out on our favorite small people! Very ingenious and creative! Kudos to Ned Langman for his amazing site!"Welcome to Fungoom Land! Here you will find funny characters, simple games, music, stories and a gentle learning experience for young children. All for free! This site has been designed to be enjoyed on many levels:

    Babies accompanied by grown-ups can enjoy the music, bright colours and simple shapes.
    Children of pre-school age can have fun learning mouse control and interacting with the funny characters, learning while they laugh.
    Older children will also enjoy the humour, and the challenging fun of discovering and collecting all the stars.
    Grown-ups have even said that they've enjoyed playing the games to relax!" Looove it!

    Games for the Brain. "Play neverending quiz, memory & brain games to train your thinking." Around 40 games, some old, some newer, and the site is available in many languages. Easy to play, good for your mind.

     

    Download GCompris Our first app from France! Available in over 40 languages (see their main page for a list). "GCompris is an educational software suite comprising of numerous activities for children aged 2 to 10...Currently GCompris offers in excess of 80 activities and more are being developed. GCompris is free software, that means that you can adapt it to your own needs, improve it and, most importantly, share it with children everywhere." Computer discovery, color, sounds, memory, experiential, amusement, reading, mathematics, puzzles,telling time, money, and strategy games like macala. Some of these will really make a child think! Another SourceForge find.

     

    Groundhog from Starfall! Groundhog Day from Starfall. "Groundhog, groundhog, what will you see? Groundhog, groundhog, please tell me!" Clicking on the alarm clock makes the groundhog sit up and rub its eyes. The next frame lets kids click on the words to see pronunciation; then click on the groundhog and it runs up the tunnel!

     

    New Site

    Halloween Math Activities for Kids from No Time for Flashcards A list of fun and crafty hands-on math activities for the littler kids, full of manipulatives. There are more at the bottom of the page under More Fun & Learning.

     

    New Site

    Halloween Music & Songs by Preschool Education Over 90 poems and songs for Halloween, with lyrics. This site also has fall themes, pages for other holidays, coloring pages, crafts, and plenty of other pre-K things.

     

    New SiteHalloween Songs, Poems, and Fingerplays by Pre-K Fun. 16 songs and poems for little ones to sing along, act out, finger play, get craftsy with, and whatever else your creativity finds to do with them. Includes all the lyrics. Pre-K Fun looks like a site worth several visits.

     

    New Site

    Halloween Songs and Activities for Calendar Time We found this page at Fantastic Fun and Learning, where there are hundreds of activities, crafts, songs, movement, dances, arty things, ideas, and many links; all pre-K and K related. They, in turn, got these from similar sites. Very, very nice. Check out the Skeleton Dance!

     

    Gonfalon di VeneziaDownloads Horazio's FreewareHere is a real potpourri of good free download ed games, by a guy from Venice, Italy, named Horazio. Among them is TurboFarm, for 5 - 7 year olds, which is an animal names matching game. There are also some excellent interactive map games to help kids learn the names of states or regions. Examples are Liberty Map to teach the names of US states, another for Greater London, one for Italy, etc. There are also games to learn Japanese characters, vector math plotters, calorie counters, and more. Your choice of English, Italian, and Spanish (one game also has Korean.) "Grazie Horazio!"

     

    I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly from Tom's TEFL out of Hong Kong. This is a video of an activity to reinforce vocabulary. It should work with ESL students of all ages and with Early Learners/lower level grade school. It could teach vocabulary, rhythm, intro to poetry, etc. Under the video there are the lyrics used. The activity could be copied and used with your students. Judy Collins - "Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly" Muppet Show 1977 has the lyrics set to music and is hilarious for kids and adults!

    Jumpstart is a familar name with subscription games and free goodies, too. A good sized free pdf worksheet section and more besides. Mostly for the younger set.

    KA has 100 free games indexed alphabetically; and by grade (pre-K - 6), subject (the 3 Rs plus Animals and Science), age (toddler to 12), and arcade games. There are mobile games, too. Down at the bottom there's an idex of all three sites' game, activities, worksheets, curriculum, resources list, and lesson plans.

    download tag Kea Coloring Book   "The NEW VERSION of Kea Coloring Book features higher resolution pictures, a resizable window, and improved graphics. All the fun. None of the mess!" This free program lets kids color, save and print. It's like a coloring book on your computer. At least 250 more pictures can be downloaded from the site and added to the coloring books. You can download the program at various download sites (the Kea site links to C/NET's Download, which works fine.)

    Keyboarding Zoo "is a fun and educational activity to help early elementary age students learn the keyboard. Children are encouraged to use their index or pointer fingers to match letters on the screen to their keyboards." With music and talking monkeys! For grades K - 2.

     

     

    Kids' Pages for Small Ages features "free printable ESL flashcards, worksheets, coloring pages, an alphabet for teachers, parents and children, educative stories like Aesop's Fables, or fairy-tales by Christian Anderson or Brothers Grimm, online games and puzzles." Very colorful and kid friendly, with a good selection of printables. Thanks, Thea, for the email about your site!

    kidsGoflash "Hi, need 30 minutes down time with your tots after running around? Looking for new materials for your kid's early education or home schooling? Want to teach them new words, animals, numbers, shapes, and more? Want to show them what they can do with a computer and the Internet? Take a seat with them, come to kidsGoflash.com, and explore this website with different kinds of interactive early education materials such as audio flashcards, clickable pictures, and learning games."

    Kizclub "Learning Resources for Kids" This site has many, many printables in pdf format that cover the early learning/primary curriculum. These include ABCs, phonics, nursery rhymes, flashcards, animals, habitats, stories & props, extras, and more. No interactives, it's all tablework. You could make bulletin boards and all sorts of crafty things with these materials.

    Learning Games For Kids "Educational games are a great tool for building foundation math and language skills that today's elementary school curriculum requires. These online learning games and songs for kids are fun, teach important skills for preschool and elementary school kids and they're free. Want educational games that help build skills in math, language, science, social studies, and more? You've come to the right place!" Also we love their layout.

    Learning PlanetThis is a subscription site, but it has a number of excellent free online ed games. (They have many more activities available if you subscribe.) We especially liked Alphabet Action for pre-K and Kindergarten. The Students page menu is laid out for pre-K and K, 2nd - 4th, and 6th and up grades. Each grade level page has grade-appropriate math, literacy, telling time, counting, matching (1:1),and/or geography games. Make sure to try Rats (pre-K through 6th grade - use the arrow keys.)

    Letter Recognition in a Play-Based Environment from A Blog From Across The Hall. A one-page sharing by a preschool teacher, about how she gently introduces letters and watches the children use them in creative play. We at GSFK believe this works if a teacher is willing to constantly monitor their learning and let them interact. Preschool teachers do this as a matter of course anyway. This teacher observes that no three year old child has ever asked her for a worksheet, and drilling will not work with such small people.

    Lining Up Strategies to help you get younger kids to behave waiting in a line. If you don't think this is a challenge, you haven't taught Kindergarten! Trust PE teachers to come up with these good ideas. From PE Central.

    Literacy Net This is a great interactive site for learning letters, numbers, shapes, and colors! Animated, with sound. Also in German, French, and Spanish!

     

    Little Discoverers: Big fun with science, math, and more! Sesame Street's STEM for early learners. This is a combination of games and videos for all six of the covered concepts: Experiments, Sink or Float, Measurement, States of Matter, Force and Motion, and Engineering. The concept buttons are arranged 3X2 on the sides of the video player. Each concept has 6 - 8 games and videos along the bottom of the screen, for kids to check out. Nicely arranged and does a good job of covering the very basic introductions to these concepts and ideas.

     

    Microwave Marshmallow Experimentfrom TinkerLab. Excellent discovery experiment for preschool and K-1s. "For this microwave marshmallow experiment, we’ll microwave three marshmallows for different periods of time, and then compare what happens to the marshmallows as they heat up, and then cool down again. This is an engaging way to involve children in scientific observation and discovery, it raises lots of questions, and doesn’t require a lot of prep or clean-up." Items list and instructions included.

     

    Minimouse Think kids don't need help learning to use a mouse? Quite a few do, actually. Some children do not have a computer at home. Pre-K and K-1s need the fine motor practice. In any case, these are nice simple little-kid games - loud and in bright, primary colors. The games are patient, non-judgmental, and do not keep score. Thanks, Yossi B, for the email.

     

    Download Minisebran - Freeware For Toddlers. This is from Marianne Wartoft, a very intelligent Swede who has also created the excellent Sebran and Seterra (best geography freeware EVER for kids AND adults!), among others. "Minisebran is a free suite of early learning games for kids 2-6 years old . It includes eight different exercises, including doodle drawing exercises and very simple games to get to know the numbers and letters, and learning to use the keyboard." We've played with it, it's fun! It would be useful for K - 1 as well as some special needs, and good for training fine motor skills.

     

    " is a fresh approach to content for kids with the perfect blend of fun and learning that helps the left & the right brained child learn through experiences. Mocomi.com endeavours to create the best and most comprehensive platform for kids in India." That would go for kids worldwide, too! Excellent site throughout. Take a deep breath..They have arts & crafts, coloring, drawing animals, printables (cards, puzzles, bookmarks, et c.), many online games, tons of Indian folk tales from all over the subcontinent (indexed by region/culture/tradition), lots of old-time English nursery rhymes and tales, educational pages (lots) with multimedia presentations (wow) and printables, covering maths, English, science, history, geography, general knowledge, and a lot more.

     

    Montessori-Inspired Arctic and Antarctic Unit from Living Montessori Now. Lists many activities, downloadables, ideas, and resources for learning about the Arctic and Antarctic regions, and the continent of Antarctica. Aimed at younger kids and homeschoolers but could be adapted for use in classrooms or with older kids. We really liked the link to learning the continents that the Antarctica unit is a part of. Too many kids and adults do not know their continents, and schools seem helpless to change that. Some of the items are free to download or copy, for others there is a fee. Plenty of links to other Montessori-inspired and homeschool sites, too.

     

      Music from Starfall is part of Starfall's literacy site. This section covers some of the main composers, with biographies, and plays some of their music as well.

     

    National Children's Literacy Website "Because Children Need to Read - More than any other single skill, the ability to read - and read well - allows a child to succeed in school, learn about the world, function in society, and someday have decent job options. Enhancing children's literacy is at the heart of the Soho Center's NATIONAL CHILDREN'S LITERACY INFORMATION project - a national children's literacy initiative. The Soho Center is committed to promoting children's literacy in child care settings and home settings. Whether you are a family child care provider, a teacher in a child care center or Head Start program, or a parent of a pre-school or school-age child - there's a lot you can do." This site has quite a lot of good advice, tips, and resources for any child care teacher or home schooling parent. We are very grateful to Jeanna Beker, Director, The Soho Center for emailing us about The Soho Center and its excellent literacy site!

     

    New SiteNocturnal Animals Unit - a Pinterest board by Kristina Abernathy. Mainly aimed at younger kids pre-K - 2nd or 3rd. Over 50 activities in all; plenty of crafts, also children's literature, grammar, KWL, elementary science and vocabulary, counting mathematic, printable sheets, items for bulletin boards, and miscellany. Mostly covers bats and owls, but some sections discuss deer, badgers etc.

     

    Downloads   Owl & Mouse Educational Software Great phonics software that reminds us of the old MECC Apple games of the 1980s. Free software for you to download and install, or play online. Their plug: "Help your child learn with games, software and educational activities from Owl & Mouse Educational Software. Early reading software—phonics software, alphabet games, and Dolch sight words in a fairy tale story. All of it FREE! Free online USA maps, world maps, map of Europe, map puzzles of the US, Europe, Africa, Asia, and many more. You can build your own castle and coat of arms—free downloads."

     

    Phonics from Sadlier-Oxford Educational Publishing. Huge! site. Great online practice games for preshool through grade 6. Covers phonics, sight words, rhyming, vowel and consonant blends, digraphs, beginning and ending consonants, dipthongs, suffixes, contractions, prefixes, synonyms, antonyms, homonyms, dictionary use, root words, complete sentences, syllables. All this from one start page that uses popups for each activity - so don't have popups blocked.

     

    Poisson Rouge logo Poisson Rouge A delightful hands-on exploration site from France, just one site of many brought to you by Kids Activities from allkids, a fine learning site from the UK. Just all sorts of fun things to click on here. It's now a subscription site.

     

    Rats from Learning Planet Different difficulty levels for pre-K to 6th grade. Covers shapes, letters, vowels & consonant, and parts of speech. Use the arrow keys to move the basket, try to keep under the bird.

     

    Read Alouds section of Good Sites for Kids! has some wonderful read aloud sites for you and your kids! (shameless self-promotion) These are seriously good.

     

    Reading Rockets "is a national multimedia literacy initiative offering information and resources on how young kids learn to read, why so many struggle, and how caring adults can help. We bring the best research-based strategies to anyone helping a young child become a strong, confident reader. The project includes PBS television programs (also available online and on DVD); online services (ReadingRockets.org and ColorinColorado.org); professional development opportunities; and a robust social community on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Tumblr." (edited by us) Big sections on: teaching reading (lots of tips & ideas), helping strugglers (ditto), A-Z list of topics ("a rich library of classroom strategies" 44 topics!), children's books and authors (including booklists and how to choose books), fun things to order, and more.

     

    Roxie's ABC Fish screen shotScreenshot of Roxie beating you at Go Fish.

    Downloads Roxie's ABC Fish is a computer version of the venerable children's card game. Practice upper and lower case letters, numbers, and a surprise music composition program at the end! Thanks to its publisher, Latticework Software (thanks guys), Roxie is now freeware!

     

     

    St. Patrick's Day Craft Party! Step by step with photos Making crafts for the holiday followed by a treasure hunt around the house and yard to find clue cards. Easy to adapt to a classroom.

     

    scissor exercises for children from happy hooligans "Little people exploring their world through good, old-fashioned play". Here are five "fun scissor exercises for children to strengthen fine motor skills. Introducing interesting materials for your child to cut up is a fun way to help little hands develop their cutting skills." She covers practical tips and suggestions about littles using scissors, and then covers (1) Using scissors with play dough, (2) Cutting up drinking straws, (3) Cutting styrofoam meat trays, (4) Cutting paint chip samples, and (5) Using Scrapbook scissors or scissors with a fancy edge. Very well done, we thought.

     

    Downloads Sebran's ABC - Free Software For Kids "It's never too early for your child to become familiar with letters and numbers. Sebran's ABC's colorful pictures, pleasant music, and gentle games teach letters, numbers, simple math, and rudiments of reading." Free to you under GNU license. Reviews are posted on the site. We've "field tested" Sebran with 5 - 10 year olds. The games are good, they work. Kids like them, too. Thank you to Marianne Wartoft of Uppsala, Sweden, who wrote this fine software! You can fine various good places to download Sebran, just Google Sebran.

     

    Sesame Street Still helping little ones, since the 1960s. Their site has oodles of activities about letters, numbers, coloring, music, eating healthy, and much more. Let kids click and explore! Some activities require Java or Flash.

     

    Click on the duck to seeRubber Duckie the famous Rubber Duckie video!

     

    spinning gold star Sight Words from Quiz-Tree.Realizing that some of our younger kids were memorizing their little easy reader books, we went looking for something online to reinforce their sight word knowledge. Shortly after clicking on this site's pre-primer word list, a teacher commented: "We need this site!" It says the words aloud, too. So, here it is. Part of a larger academic site, and free membership brings lots more goodies.

     

    Signing Savvy THE place to go for ASL! "Signing Savvy is a sign language dictionary containing several thousand high resolution videos of American Sign Language (ASL) signs, fingerspelled words, and other common signs used within the United States and Canada." Watching a video of the signing is way better than looking at a picture with confusing curving arrows. This site will help you learn ASL! Includes search for words and phrases; or browse by letter. Look up fingerspelling, numbers, colors, animals, geography, baby signs, more! Free but limited access for guests. Full membership gives unlimited access to all site resources for $50 a year. Normally Good Sites would not run pay sites, but if you need to learn to sign this is worth it. Thanks Corey W. and Teri T.

     

    SillyBooks Here's a site with several animated talking stories, one that has to be read, and two pages of online jigsaw puzzles. Should be useful for anyone looking for more stories and the puzzles are simple.

     

    Songs from British Council. Dozens of good kid songs, old and new. In Flash or as video. Great for singing along. "Do you like listening to songs in English? Singing songs is a great way to get better at speaking English and we have lots of great songs for you to enjoy! Have fun!"

     

    Downloads SoupToysSoup Toys You have got to try this it is amazing! "Just about every child likes to play with toys that make noise, balance, topple, float or otherwise interact with the world. Balls bounce, balloons float into the sky and magnets lift metal objects. All of these interactions teach children something the natural world around them. The beauty of Soup Toys is that it isn't confined to a single Window. When you run it, you have access to a virtual "toybox" where you can pull out the desktop toys that you want to play with. The sides of your computer screen act like walls and the floor. You can build block castles, play with toy cars, or have fun with virtual magnets. The possibilities are limitless." Kids can't believe they can bounce a basketball across a Word document! This was from the comprehensive writeup in Educational Freeware. We found a working download site here. BTW even 12 year olds like it.

     

    spacedrum! is one of 400+ projects at chromeexperiments. spacedrum! lets you play steel drums wid de mouse, mon. Your choice of 6-note, 8-note, or 13-note drums. Play all kinds of melodies, tape your best ones, and replay them! Very simple and a lot of fun. (Actually not all that simple, but good coding makes it seem so.)

     

    spinning gold star starfall.com logo StarFall Fantastic phonics-intensive site for pre-k through second grade. Stories, movies, and games! Progressive levels let kids read or be read to. Every time we go to this site with K-2 kids, we find something new and great! This site WILL keep those busy little brains going for a whole computer lab session! Thanks, Tia S., amazing Kindergarten teacher.

     

    Super Coloring "Search through 16912 colorings" Here's another coloring (or "colouring") site for pre-K through adult. Coloring online or download the pictures. There are seven pages of classical art (1st 2 1/2 pages are biblical art, the rest are not), 1 1/2 pages of Tinkerbell and friends, pages and pages of cartoon characters (yes, they have Pokemon!), even a dot-to-dot section. You can even submit your own. This is a neat find. Thanks to editor Kate for putting this together.

     

    Tie your shoe is what we decided to call this video. It shows, in 25 seconds, a new way to help little children learn to tie their shoes! The bunny ears reference may help the method to stick in their memories. This video is from the Rosemeade Elementary PTA via the Ross Elementary PTA (we think they're in Utah). Its original name was "Aug 6, 2013 8:50pm", so we think ours is better :)

     

    TimeWorks "Place the numbers on the clock face." Click and drag the numbers to their correct positions on an analog clock face. Good for teaching understanding that the analog clock's numbers stand for time. Also good for practicing motor skills and for teaching number order.

     

    Turtle Diary is very similar to Cookie in site layout, content and mission - it has games, read-alouds, ESL activities, mathematics, science, art, puzzles, printables, arts and crafts. Designed for pre-K through 2nd grade, ages 5 - 7. Great site!

     

    Download Tux Paint Kids really love playing with this program! "Tux Paint is a free, award-winning drawing program for children ages 3 to 12 (for example, preschool and K-6). It combines an easy-to-use interface, fun sound effects, and an encouraging cartoon mascot who guides children as they use the program. Kids are presented with a blank canvas and a variety of drawing tools to help them be creative."

     

    Mauritius-Flag.gif UpToTen All the way from the proud island country of Mauritius out in the Indian Ocean comes this wonderful site for kids! Isn't the internet great? "UpToTen has been building prize-winning early-learning games and activities since 1999. Your child will love the reassuring, friendly world that our unique games inhabit. S/he will have enormous fun whilst building independence on the computer. UpToTen.com is completely independent. We do all the illustrations, animations, design, music and dialogues ourselves, and lovingly bring them together to make positively reinforcing games in a warm and welcoming play-area. UpToTen free, UpToTen Premium, UpToTen @ School, and more. With over A THOUSAND educational games and activities for children aged up to ten years old! A safe place to play and learn where your child will feel right at home, right away."

     

    The Year’s Best Art and Creativity Books for Kids from Tinkerlab. "Creative Experiments for Young Innovators... Tinkerlab supports parents and teachers who want to raise confident and creative thinkers, through child-directed and process-oriented projects. We’re so glad you’re here!" Click here to learn more. Oodles of projects in outdoors, art, science, sensory, upcycling, tinkertots, baby, toddler, and school-age. So when this site has a list of 12 top art and creativity books, it is worth reading. Teachers and parents, go read over this list, you'll be glad.

     

     

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