While many parents haven’t wanted to entertain the “what if” idea that we may soon be home with the kids in quarantine due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus — the possibility is looming. And this isn’t a seasonal break where we check off the days in our heads until they return to school (admit it — it’s nice when they go back to school). This is school limbo, and many of us will be treading new territory as we keep all sane and, most importantly, keep our kids on the learning path. Although public schools do not plan to close at this moment, we have rounded up free educational resources to keep kids occupied at home during the coronavirus outbreak.
Psst…Looking for even more resources to keep the kids busy at home? Check out Free Resources and Subscriptions for Remote Learning and Home Schooling due to Coronavirus
The 10 Best Free Educational Resources for Kids During Coronavirus Outbreak
For toddlers up to pre-k students, parents will love the collection of printables that are geared to support kids in learning. Kids can also hop on their favorite shows such as Wild Kratts and Dinosaur Train, where games are designed to enrich their education.
With a mission to help kids meet critical early development needs — the program many of us grew up on is still going strong and providing online content and shows every weekday morning. Many parents will attest that Sesame Street is still one of the best resources for the pre-k and kindergarten set, as well as kids with special needs. You’ll find video, games, and art projects online. You may be home stuck with the kids, but we won’t tell anyone when you jump up when “Number of the Day” comes up.
If you’re looking for some apps for the tablet, we recommend Duckduckmoose for the preschool to kindergarten set. Graphics and interface are engaging and easily accessible for children. From puzzles, maps, to fun music apps where you can learn notes and rhythm, kids gravitate enthusiastically to this sister site of Khan Academy.
We recommend this resource for kids ages 5 and up. An extensive catalog of content, as well as a tool to partake in a virtual tour of the museum, will give kids a dose of art and culture. Kids can learn about a particular period or collection and explore art via the “Time Machine,” starting as early as 8000-2000 BC to present time with fun facts and videos.
With only time on their hands, this site is for the young writer who is itching to write a novel… in 30 days. Common Core-aligned lesson plans from prewriting to publishing help kids to develop and fine-tune their writing skills. We love this resource for students who are up for using their imagination to create another world or simply tell their story. From lower elementary to high school.
For elementary to high school students with lessons that engage through stories and podcasts. Segments in categories like Physics & Chemistry, Earth Science, Brain and Biology, and more will provide kids with a new way of seeing science.
Coolmath4kids is for kids from kindergarten to sixth grade. Kids can work on addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and fractions through online math games, quizzes, manipulatives, and more. For kids 13 and up, visit their sister site at coolmath.com.
From Smile to Dogman, Scholastic provides many favorite books to our kids. Students can visit the Scholastic website for a wealth of educational activities from grades pre-k and up. Weaving in familiar stories and games for the kids will help when the fun of being home has worn off, and delving into some familiar characters will add a bit of normalcy to the day.
We all know kids can ask the craziest things. But what if… gasp… you do not have the answer? Send them to Howstuffworks.com. From How the Shamrock Shake Became McDonald’s Mintiest Legend (who knew!) to What’s the Difference Between a Mountain Lion and a Cougar? We can’t promise this site has the answer for everything, but it comes pretty darn close.
New York Family contributor and homeschooling mom Denise Nicole (@abrooklybabe) shares tips to get through the day:
- Get to know your child’s learning style and adapt to it. For example, if they are a better reader compared to other subjects, give them more reading lessons.
- When it comes to teaching kids math, keep in mind some kids do better with worksheets while others prefer math manipulatives or a combination of both.
- Just because you cannot go out you can still release all that energy with physical exercise like a dance party (Kidz Bop videos are great) or letting them do some fun dance videos on TikTok or yoga for the little ones. I like cosmic kids yoga on youtube.
If your school does not have a communication system set up, Google, in response to COVID-19, recently announced that advanced Hangouts Meet and Google Classroom features are available for free to anyone who uses G Suite. This is an excellent way for an entire class or group of classes to participate in a lesson simultaneously, or a video lesson can be accessed later. These features are usually available in the Enterprise edition of G Suite and in G Suite Enterprise for Education — available at no additional cost to all customers until July 1, 2020. The only caveat is that you do need to already be a G suite customer. There are three main plans: Basic ($6), Business ($12), and Enterprise ($25).