Prevent your kids from getting the shutdown slump with these 20 free educational resources for students.
The mass closure of schools across the country took parents, students, and teachers by surprise. Some districts have announced plans for online instruction, while others have not yet taken that step. Many parents are now scrambling to figure out what to do with their kids, and students, parents, and teachers alike are questioning how this will affect student progress and learning.
Long breaks from classes can leave students with a slump in learning, as often happens during summer and winter break periods. There are a ton of resources online available to students, parents, and educators, and we decided to compile a list of websites for folks to use to keep those growing minds working as we wait out the school closures. Check out these resources to prevent that shutdown slump in your students.
20 Free Online Learning Sites to Keep Students Learning During School Shutdowns:
This is a site that's always free and offers open-source content and technology tools for students and educators. Content-based learning resources for grades K-12 aligned with state standards and curriculum. CK12 is run by a California nonprofit and is a valuable educational resource dedicated to supporting low-cost K-12 education.
This site provides teacher-reviewed online lesson plans and resources for students starting in preschool through career and technical education. Tons of resources for everyone here.
This resource is always free and allows parents to set up a program for their child’s unique needs. Supports students in a wide range of areas in K-12.
4. Khan Academy
Always free for all users, this site offers a huge range of lessons and reviews on subjects for students at all levels of educations. Test prep, videos, and lessons, this is one of the best educational resources out there, and it's totally free.
Free online courses for students in K-12, video lessons with quizzes, and other activities. Two new current events lessons posted every day. Available to anyone who wants to teach or learn.
Kahoot is well-loved by teachers and students and has been in classrooms for years. Students can access these fun online quizzes from home for free!
Scholastic is offering free online learning experiences for kids, with lessons and daily resources for kindergarten through middle school.
Learning resources in math and reading for grades K-8 are free on Fun Brain and for PreK on Fun Brain Jr. Hundreds of lessons to choose from and there are plenty of educational games here too so kids have lots of learning options.
Kids and parents will love this one. All about animals, there are games, videos, lessons, activities, and all sorts of fun stuff here.
10. PBS Kids
Videos, games, lessons. Live shows, there's so much for kids here, this one is good for the PreK and elementary set, and they will find favorite characters and meet new ones here. Sign up for the daily newsletter for new activities every day.
Starfall has been around for almost 20 years and is a trusted resource dedicated to teaching kids how to read. They offer lessons for preschool through third grade in language arts and mathematics and include lessons, projects, games, audio, and more.
National Geographic for Kids has so much to offer! Games, videos, animal facts, science, history, space, geography, and more to keep kids interested in a wide range of subjects.
Students love this site! It offers game-based math lessons for students in first through eighth grade. Students set up a profile and can make progress at their own pace through the games and activities.
This site will keep kids entertained for a good while. Lots of puzzles, facts of the day, riddles, jokes, weather activities, pet facts, and more.
15. How Stuff Works
This website will answer all those questions curious little minds want to know. Games, videos, and quizzes about how stuff works, like cars, planes, entertainment, culture, money, tech, and science, just to name a few.
16. CoolMath4Kids and CoolMath
Cool Math4Kids if for the 3 through 12 years old group, while Cool Math is for ages 13 and over. These online math games cover everything your kiddo could want to know, and math facts and skills are worked into every game!
This science website has tons of activities and experiments kids can do to learn about science hands-on. Making slime, learning about solar eclipses, and dry ice science, this one will keep them wanting more.
18. Code Monster
This coding website is for middle school-aged students and offers interactive lessons in multiple code languages.
20. Code Wars
High school-aged students can participate in online challenges in a variety of programming languages.
There are also lots of free ways to keep kids reading, including old fashioned paper books, eBooks, and audiobooks. Check out your local library website to see if you can link your card through Libby, Overdrive, and other e-reader apps. Websites like Librivox, Spotify, Storyline Online, Loyal Books, Project Gutenberg, Open Library, ManyBooks.net, and International Children's Digital Library are just a few great places online to get totally free eBooks and audiobooks for all levels of readers.
We know there are a ton of great educational websites and resources for students of all ages and skill levels out there to choose from. Hopefully, this list will help keep your kids entertained and doing a little more than playing video games or being on social media for the next few weeks. Hang in there, parents and kiddos! This will pass and life will go back to normal soon, but in the meantime, we can keep those student minds busy and not lose progress or valuable learning time from not being in the classroom.
What other sites do you know of that are great for kids to use to keep their academics going during the school shutdown? Give us the goods in the comments!