It’s difficult to come up with active and imaginative lesson plans throughout the winter months when outdoor breaks are few and far between. However, technology has made it possible to open up an entire world for your children from the comfort of your own home with educational online activities.
Here are a few of the most fun and educational online activities that teach about animals, nature, science, and language – and a few that encourage the kids to get up off the couch.
The importance of learning about both domestic animals and wildlife cannot be underscored enough. And since many families have pets, it makes sense to start with dog-themed lesson plans. Learning how animals live and interact with each other as well as humans encourages compassion in children young and old. One exciting activity for older children is to go online and look at adoptable pets and then discuss the importance of responsible animal ownership.
Young children will delight in learning about nature through online games, such as ones provided by Central Sierra Environmental Resource Center. Children can learn about everything from habitat and food chains to how watershed affects an area’s flora and fauna. This information can be used to build model habitats to further their understanding of how living things interact with one another.
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Science is a broad term that encompasses everything from the environment to biology. Preschoolers may utilize games found on PBS Kids to learn about topics such as dinosaurs and robotics in a fun, child-friendly format, often using their favorite characters, such as Grover, the Cat in the Hat, and Daniel Tiger. There are numerous resources for science lesson for grade-school children – the Utah Education Network offers an extensive listing of science-based games for independent learners in third through sixth grade. Children can learn about microorganisms, static electricity, sound, the lunar cycle, and more. Many lessons offer kids the opportunity to test their knowledge when the fun is done.
For children curious about native tongues other than their own, the internet is an excellent resource for online language learning. A favorite for children just exploring how different cultures speak is Google Translate. There are also dozens of free and paid language apps, CDs, and audiobooks to help young speakers expand their linguistic abilities. eLearning Industry has narrowed down the best in its top 10 Best Language Learning Apps For Kids and asserts that it’s never too early to fill their brains with words and sounds from other countries.
There is no shortage of online videos of dance and exercise tutorials for kids and adults alike. But if you are looking to combine academics and exercise, you’ll need to dig a little deeper. Physical education encompasses so much more than just moving your body. Children need to learn how the heart, lungs, muscles, and brain affect a person’s physical abilities. OPEN offers free online physical education curriculum for students of all ages. Lesson plans include tools for teaching with limited equipment, learning personal and social responsibility, and even information on ball games.
Children wishing to learn how to play an instrument can find plenty of resources online. But, if you are not sure if they are serious or don’t have the funds to invest in an expensive piece of equipment, there are plenty of online resources to learn how to create music using everyday objects or technology.
In addition to these activities, students can download e-books to research information about their favorite literary works, artist, and athletes. Providing an enriching home education is a labor of love, but one that is made exponentially easier when you, and your students, have access to information and activities right at your fingertips.
For even more Educational Online Activities, check out these 100+ Free Online Unit Studies.