This post was written by guest blogger, Vera M. Reed. Vera is a former educator and current blogger in Southern California who enjoys writing on a range of topics in the realm of education, everything from online education to special education. She hopes you enjoy this article!
Technology is kind of amazing isn’t it? There are now tons of tools for teachers to use to help them become more engaged with their students and now with iPads and tablets finding apps to help both entertain and educate children is easier than ever! Here are some of our favorites.
Practically every child has read at least one Dr.Seuss book or at least seen a movie based on the books, your students are sure to get a kick out of the whimsy-filled site, Seussville.com. It’s full of games and activities based on the books — our favorites include Fishin’ for the ABC’s (which is great for beginning readers), and Lorax Quest. The whole site has the same quirky charm of the books, and it is a fun and interactive site for your avid Dr. Seuss readers.It’s a great way for kids to really become a part of the Dr.Seuss world and get excited to read.
PBS Kids is another great option — in fact, Parenting.com listed it as their number one favorite (free) educational website. This site features all childhood favorite PBS characters, such as Curious George and Clifford. The Hungry Games (based off of the popular Hunger Games, though not as violent, of course!) is especially fun, as you complete mini quests to help learn colors shapes, words and more. Abby’s Adventure Game is another fun activity for beginning readers, as it challenge your little ones to choose certain items all starting with the same letter.
Fun Brain is similarly, well, fun. Their reading section feature web versions of popular books (such as Diary of a Wimpy Kid), along with original material. They also have games like MadLibs (and who doesn’t have a soft spot in their heart for some good ol’ MadLibs?), as well as comics, all of which are suitable for intermediate readers. Teachers with students from the first grade and higher will love the fun games that challenge students and exercise their reading skills and comprehension.
Starfall.com has an array of activities that are suitable for fledgling learners to more advanced readers. Popular for kids preschool age to about second or third grade, this site features many games, which are handily divided up into four sections: “ABCs” and “Learn to Read” are great for beginners, and “It’s Fun to Read” and “I’m Reading” are both fun for intermediate readers. One thing we like about this site, is the fact that it uses multiple artistic forms to help children read, such as music, plays, and poetry. It’s a great tool to get the entire classroom involved as you can do activities together and makes reading just plain fun.
Ah, JumpStart: JumpStart has been an old favorite for dozens of years now! JumpStart’s site offers lots of fun choices; their Madagascar-themed games are especially popular (we love Madagascar: My ABCs, which is a great tool to teach young children all about the alphabet). You can browse their activities by age group, and they offer educational worksheets, games, and interactive activities for everyone from Kindergarten, all the way up through 5th grade.
So, there you have it: 5 sites that prove that learning really is fun. Reading is an important skill that thanks to modern technology can now turn into playtime and learning. These are just some of the apps available for teachers to incorporate into their classrooms. Using technology in a school environment is a great way to get students more comfortable and excited about learning.