10 Spectacular (and Free) Educational Websites for Toddlers
It's futile to argue that we live in a time when technology rules everything. We laughed at our parents when they thought that the CD-ROM drive was a cup holder, and now our 3-year-olds can do more with an iPhone than we can. The great thing is that, while technology has plenty of disadvantages, it also comes with a ton of advantages. One of those many advantages is using the internet for resources which are both fun and educational. These 10 websites are not only amazing for preschool education but they downright fun.
When I read about PBS losing funding, it irritates me because as a father of two I have seen how effective their programming is at being entertaining and educational. It doesn't just stop at their TV programming, though; their website is unmatched when it comes to fun and education.
The PBS Kids website represents all of its shows in one place and has everything you could ever need including full-length episodes, coloring pages, games, show-specific activities, and more.
The site in not just for the kids, though. Parents can also use it as a resource to look for parenting tips, show times, and PBS kids apparel and toys. If you have younger kids, you could spend hours a day on this site and not get bored or feel bad about it for that matter.
Fun Brain is exactly as its name states; it is a website full of fun that sneakily teaches kids important subjects. The site is easy to navigate even for young children, and it is full of eye-catching colors and characters. While Funbrain.com focuses on games that are not all that they offer.
Fun Brain offers books and videos for kids who aren't ready for or don't want to play games. They also offer tons of resources for parents and teachers. The best part is that all of this is provided for free which makes it accessible to everyone no matter their economic status.
The Kidz Page
TheKidzPage.com may not be the prettiest website, but it gets the job done. What the site lacks in beauty it makes up for in volume. Your toddler can do nearly anything on this site including playing games, puzzles, coloring pages, and more.
The Kidz Page isn't just about online play either. They offer plenty of printable pages and ideas for both crafts and games away from the computer. They even offer special games and activities for the holidays.
Because of its layout, your kid may need a little help navigating this site, but it is a great tool for parents looking to add some fun and education to their toddler's play.
This one may seem like it is cheating, but parents do not take advantage of this website even though it is plugged at the end of every episode of every show. It is a free resource with tons of educational games, printable coloring pages (both online and printable) and full-length episodes of your kid's favorite shows. It is all pretty standard stuff, but they have the characters that kids love which makes this site more appealing than most.
Nick Jr. also offers a lot of really nice resources for adults. They have a beyond the backpack tab which is full of a ton of excellent information about kindergarten preparedness. There is also a link to the Nickelodeon Parents site which is overflowing with great information including printable activities, crafts, and healthy recipe ideas.
Cookie.com is a simple website in image, but powerful when it comes to learning tools. I love how they have a particular tab for pre-K kids which makes finding the games and videos you want much easier. They teach everything from basic colors and shapes to some advanced math and reading. The games are great, but they also offer educational videos, arts and crafts projects, and books. I especially like the books because they have a button to press which reads the book to your toddler who isn't ready to read to themselves.
This website is like many others on the list, it is not particularly fancy, but it does offer a lot. They offer games for all ages which are all conveniently categorized under each grade level. The thing that stands out to be about mrnussbaum.com is the sheer immensity of the subject matters covered. This site, and the games it offers cover virtually every subject one could learn about in school.
There are a few parent and teacher resources, but most pertain to the site itself. Overall this website is simple, but it is free and offers so many games your toddler will be bound to find one that they love.
Much like Nick Junior, DisneyJr.com's biggest advantage is that it is full of characters that your kids already know and love. The site offers everything you would need including full-length episodes, games, video clips, and activities. We even used some of the activities on their page for my 4-year-old's birthday party.
Their "for grown ups" page is mostly promotional materials, but there are a few helpful items on there. There are recipes, advanced crafts, and even music for parents to check out. This site does offer some educational material, but it is mostly for fun which is ok too.
A website does not get much easier than this regarding graphics. Learning planet obviously, does not have a lot of money behind it which makes it impressive that they are still offering their educational games for free. They offer games at every age level which are found under the student tab.
Teachers and parents have their tab which is surprisingly full of resources. There are more fun activity suggestions and worksheets galore along with student tracking for teachers. This may not be the best website ever made, but it is worth checking out and may be a valuable resource for some.
Who ever would have thought that Lego would offer free educational games for Pre-K? The site is full of pure fun with a ton of online games for kids of all ages. Lego is kind enough to separate the games fit for Pre-K under a separate tab. These games are not traditional teaching games that teach letters and numbers, but they are a fun way for kids to train dexterity and problem-solving skills.
Treehouse is involved with a shocking amount of well-known characters. Your kids will love playing games starring their favorite characters. The site has plenty of games along with videos and printable activities. My favorite thing about this site is that the tabs have audio, so your kid who can't read yet knows what they are pressing.
On the parent end of things, Treehouse may offer the most comprehensive parent website on this list. They offer a never ending list of arts and crafts along with recipes for the whole family. There are also tabs to check out Treehouse's TV schedule and purchase sweet Treehouse merchandise.
The beautiful thing about technology is how many opportunities is allows us no matter what age we are. These ten websites prove just that by offering engaging and entertaining material for kids who are not yet school-aged. I am sure there are some great sites out there that I missed, please comment and let me know if there is one I should check out for my Pre-K kid.