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Top 3 Summer Learning Websites

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Lori Getz: I love summer break, but I have to tell you that, as a teacher, I am always concerned with the break in learning. Learning is a skill that needs to be practiced! For those parents with elementary-age children who want to keep the learning moving, here are some educational online options for you!

computer keyboard

Math: http://www.carrotsticks.com
This is a great math game wherein you can compete against other players from around the world. You can create a username that does not give away personal information, and you CAN'T chat with the other players. Kids can practice addition, subtraction, multiplication and division at different levels, and it's FREE through the month of June!

Geography: http://geosense.net
One of my favorite games! Pins drop on different cities across the U.S. or the world; you have to pick the city, state or country before your opponent does in order to receive maximum points. With this one, there is no login needed and no chat component, either.

All types of learning: http://funschool.kaboose.com
Here you have everything from math and science to language arts. There are even some great games that build analytical skills and social awareness. There is no login and no chat component -- just LOTS of fun and educational games. Here are direct links to some of my favorites, including a game about recycling, a game that enhances typing skills and a problem-solving game that requires you to move blocks. (Watch out: It's tough!):

  • http://funschool.kaboose.com/formula-fusion/birds-of-a-feather/games/5280.html
  • http://funschool.kaboose.com/globe-rider/earth-day/games/game_michael_recycle.html
  • http://funschool.kaboose.com/fun-blaster/back-to-school/games/game_super_hyper_spider_typer.html

Remember, the Internet is a fabulous resource when used appropriately. However, young children should NEVER be left alone at the computer to play these games -- and older children should have safeguards in place. 

For safe and appropriate use, try implementing these parental controls:

1) Keep the computer in a public space in the home.

2) Consider sitting with young children while they play. It can be a fun activity for the both of you, as well as a safety measure. (You have to remember that, while online, children are just one click away from being exposed to potentially dangerous and inappropriate content.)

3) Install filtering software. We cannot be at our children's sides 24/7, but this is the next best option. You can even set it up so that the user can ONLY access pre-approved websites that you have added to a list. Macs have built-in filtering software, and you can purchase third-party filtering software for the PC. (Check out http://internet-filter-review.toptenreviews.com for a list of options for the PC.) Remember, though: Filtering software will ONLY work at the computer where it is installed. It's a great way to set up expectations and teach children that not everything on the Internet is meant for them; however, it won't keep them safe at other computers that are not filtered!

4) Limit online use. Children should not sit at the computer for more than 30 minutes at a time. Prolonged computer use can cause repetitive stress injuries that affect hands, eyes, necks, backs and wrists.

Have a great summer -- and have fun SAFE-surfing the Internet!


next: How to 'Unspoil' Your Kids
109 comments so far | Post a comment now
Presentation skills March 9, 2011, 1:29 AM

Wanted to drop a comment and let you know your Rss feed isnt functioning today. I tried adding it to my Google reader account and got nothing.

audio video superstore March 17, 2011, 10:04 AM

This really answered my problem, thank you!

life flight March 20, 2011, 8:50 PM

Brilliant, cheers, I will visit again later.

dating sites March 24, 2011, 2:26 PM

I have got 1 suggestion for your web page. It seems like at this time there are a few cascading stylesheet troubles while launching a selection of web pages inside google chrome and safari. It is functioning fine in internet explorer. Probably you can double check this.

Kemeja Rusty March 28, 2011, 4:55 PM

How did you make a site look this awesome. Email me if you can and share your wisdom. Id be thankful.

how to swing a golf club April 5, 2011, 11:19 PM

Im having a teeny issue. I cant get my reader to pickup your rss feed, Im using bing reader by the way.

I believe one of your ads initiated my web browser to resize, you may well need to get that on your blacklist.

url April 7, 2011, 4:28 PM

It appears to me that this website doesnt load on a Motorola Droid. Are other folks having the exact same issue? I like this website and dont want to have to skip it any time Im away from my computer.

Dumpster Rental Ecorse April 10, 2011, 4:06 AM

I was wondering if you ever considered modifying the page layout of your web site? It is well written; I enjoy what youve got to say. But maybe you can include a a bit more in the way of written content so people might connect to it better. You have got an awful lot of text for only having one or two graphics. Maybe you can space it out better?


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