10 Safe Research Sites for Kids

July 18th, 2011 in .Family Tech
Mrs Mario
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The internet is often made out to be this terrifying minefield of danger and depravity for kids, terrifying parents who would like to teach their children more about the online world. However, many intrepid souls have made a huge effort to create sites that are perfect for kids.

These sites are safe, they avoid the dark and the dodgy, and they are structured to keep a child’s eyes away from the lesser elements on the web. Here are ten of the best research sites for kids that are safe and secure. Follow our tutorial on how to set these up using Windows Parental Controls so that kids can only research using these safe sites.

1. Awesome Library

While the site isn’t exactly aesthetically pleasing, it offers an enormous database of research material and resources. On the landing page you select which category you are from – Teachers, Kids, Teens, Parents, Librarians or College – and then you are taken to the relevant page.  The site does need parental supervision while finding the relevant research sources but once done, it offers an excellent source of information.

2. Simple Photographic Dictionary

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This site offers an online resource that uses simple language and images to convey the meanings of words and things. It can be used to support English learning, as a visual aid, and as a research tool. I would advise that a parent sit nearby as they have Google Ads that can direct children away from the site.

3. Bartleby.com

Specifically for older children, this site offers free books and information across a huge range of respected authors and classical writings. Easy to use and very well stocked, it is something of a treasure trove for kids and adults alike.

4. Smithsonian

The Smithsonian online is a staggering resource with fantastic photography and information. As a tool to discover more about the world it is invaluable, and the site has no advertising so children are unlikely to navigate away from the main page.

5. National Geographic for Kids

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Cartoons, videos, games, photographs and facts – the National Geographic site for kids is brilliant. Excellent for teaching about the natural world and instilling a sense of wonder in your child. It is also a safe place for them to visit, play games and enjoy fun activities.

6. Teach the Children Well

This is an American site that has been designed by a teacher as a safe resource for children. It is, essentially, a resource point for websites that are good for kids. Click on the topic – Animals, The Arts, Technology – and you’re taken to a series of links that have been chosen specifically because they are child-friendly. I still advise you vet each site before allowing it on your safe list, though.

7. NOVA

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This site is linked to the popular American television show that covers everything from string theory to the evolution of flight. Ideally for older children, the site offers a range of resources that have been provided by reputable scientists and journalists.

8. Encyclopaedia Britannica

A truly super resource, the Encyclopaedia Britannica is a brilliant and safe research site for kids. Here is information on just about anything in a well laid out and easily navigable format. Younger kids may need some help figuring things out though.

9. Miamiopia

While not quite a research site per se, Miamiopia offers games and activities in specific areas that teach children while they have fun. The site has a good range of topics to choose from but does need the user to sign in first. Adult supervision advisable at first.

10. BBC Schools

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Content is broken down into age group and category on this educational site. Jam packed with activities, information, images and advice, it is an excellent resource for children that’s safe and in line with the national curriculum.

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