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Monday, September 17, 2012

Top 10 FREE Educational Computer Games for Kids

The Unlikely Homeschool

One of the highlights of the school day for my Littles is when their Task Card says they may play a review game on the computer.  Although there are many great "membership only" review sites that are well-worth the registration price, there are just as many FREE sites worth exploring.  Here, in no particular order are our kid-friendly family favorites.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
ABCYa

ABCYa.com

This is, by far, our GO TO on-line game site.  I like the fact that I can choose the grade level of play.  ABCYa.com does not just focus on one particular subject, but has a handful of both math and language games to choose from.  I also appreciate the ONE PLAYER feature.  My kids do not like competing against another unseen child via the computer.  Instead, he/she is only challenged by his/her own personal score or time on the clock.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Arcademic Skill Builders

Arcademic Skill Builders

Filled with math and geography review games, Arcademic Skill Builders has many fun features.  The one negative is the fact that your child will be placed in a group with other on-line gamers for a race to the finish.  If your kids are like mine and get flustered with "race-type" challenges, you might want to pass on this site.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Cool Math Games

Cool Math Games

Logic skills is the main theme of Cool Math Games.  Don't let the name fool you, however.  There are many language skill building games included.  The one negative of this site is that it does not review actual math or language skills such as addition and subtraction, but rather the logistical skills needed to perform those mathematical processes.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Dance Mat Typing

Dance Mat Typing

Want an inexpensive...in fact, FREE...typing program for your kids?  Dance Mat Typing just might be in order.  This funky site is produced by BBC schools and touts four easy skill levels to develop basic typing skills.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Game Goo

Game Goo

Admittedly, Game Goo is not my favorite site as many of the games are just fluffy wastes of time.  There are, however, a few good ones that have topics unexplored on other sites.  The quirky graphics are always a kid-favorite around here.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Knowledge Adventure

Knowledge Adventure

Half of the games offered on Knowledge Adventure have absolutely NOTHING to do with building knowledge, but are just fun, arcade-style challenges.  If you are selective, however, there are many educational offerings worth pursuing.  

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Learning Games for Kids

Learning Games for Kids

Art, music, literature, geography, and even health are just a sampling of the extracurricular game links provided at Learning Games for Kids.  It provides many core subject games, as well.  Almost all of the games are links to different sites around the web.  So, some parental discretion is in order.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Math Game Time

Math Game Time

Just as its name denotes, Math Game Time only provides math games.  Like Arcademic Skill Builders, children are pitted against other on-line players for a race-to-the-finish-style game.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Soft School

Soft School

I hesitate even adding Soft School to the list as it is mostly just a glorified worksheet.  But, if you are in need of some "jazz hands" to add to an otherwise "regular" math or language worksheet, this might be just what you are looking for.  Players are asked simple review questions and must type their answers in order to progress to the next question.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Spelling City

Spelling City

Highlighting spelling and vocabular practice, Spelling City is a membership only site with a handful of FREE games for unregistered visitors.  The biggest "pro" to this site is a "make your own list" feature.  You can type dozens of individualized words for each of your children.  The "con"...you have to re-enter the list every time you re-enter the site.

Top 10 FREE Computer Games for Kids
Starfall

Starfall

The free phonics review games and digital "readers" provided at Starfall make it another GO TO site for my younger learners.  Although my middle boys still need an older sib to help with the technical part of handling the computer track pad, the actual site is very preschool friendly.


I realize that this does not even scratch the surface for on-line offerings.  But, these 10 games have become our most-used resources.  Do you utilize computer review games in your homeschool day?
What's your GO TO on-line review game?


Linking up with these lovely blogs.

17 comments:

  1. We like Seterra-the map quiz game. I sometimes play against my 12 year old. Again, for slightly older children, the Khan academy has videos which can be helpful if my explanation of a maths concept hasn't helped or needs elaborating.

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    Replies
    1. These are both new to me, SarahElisabeth. Although I have heard of Khan a few times. I will have to check them out. Thanks!

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    2. LOVE Seterra! My 8 year old loves trying to beat my scores.

      A site I just found is http://www.kbkonnectedkids.com/#!home/mainPage
      It's by a teacher who has sites listed that she uses for when her students get done early. Some, like the litebrite site, are just for fun, but there's some good educational ones too that I hadn't heard of before.

      Delete
  2. I like ABCmouse.com but I do not like the monthly fee of 7.99. Although it seems little it can be expansive when times are tight. My boys loved it through. We mostly use nickjr.com I have not used any of the sites listed that I know of but I am going to look at some of them and thanks for listing the reviews.

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    Replies
    1. I'll have to revisit Nickjr.com. I think we've done that one before. I don't blame you about not always wanting to pay $7.99.

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  3. Here is a list I came up with last month for some friends.

    http://eaglenestmom.blogspot.com/2012/08/young-children-on-computer-free.html

    I'll add a link to your blog at the bottom, because you have several that I didn't find.

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  4. I just found out about Spelling City, and I'm fine with a free version, it looks like. I'm OK with typing in the words ;)

    we LOVE Starfall around here, as well as PBS kids and Nick Jr.

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  5. Wow! These are awesome resource ideas. :)

    My daughter has been playing with Starfall for quite a while now and simply soaks it up. She's reading pretty independently already, and she's only in kindergarten. And PBS and Nick Jr., as Dianna@Kennedy Adventures said, are good bases here, too.

    I am definitely going to check out the others because I'm a first-time homeschooling parent, and my hubby and I are slowly gathering which topics are best learned in what formats for our two children. We have a kindergartner and a preschooler, so when one thing works well for one, it's not always so for the other. :)

    Thanks for these site leads (Mama Eagle, thanks to you, too). I'm sure my daughter will want to tag along when I check them out.

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  6. Wonderful list - thanks so much for sharing. My daughter really loves this kind of stuff. We'll have fun exploring the ones new to us.

    By the way - just a little typo, your link for Cool Math Games actually links back to Arcademics instead.
    http://www.coolmath-games.com/

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  7. I like computer games because they physically involve the children in the learning process (hands on). But I do not like them for teaching phonics because they teach some of the sounds incorrectly making it hard for some children to blend the sounds. for example d is not du. We do not say du-a-du-y for daddy.

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  8. My 5 year old likes one called cookie.com. Lots of educational games.

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  9. We like fun4thebrain.com as well as, believe it or not, fisherprice.com. They have some fun games for the pre-k set that encourages counting and letter recognition. They even have stuff for toddlers and babies that just require the kid to hit the keyboard...anywhere. We use fun4thebrain.com for math, but I think it also has language arts on there.

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  10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  11. With the help of online games kids can really enhance their minds

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  12. Thank you so much for your wonderful suggestions. I have been looking for something for my 2 1/2 year old granddaughter. I looked into ABCmouse and it had a few bad reviews (trying to cancel and customer service). Your site is wonderful and I will be back to check out more in the very near future.

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  13. Please ignore the automatic downloading.I am definitely going to check out the others because I'm a first-time homeschooling parent, and my hubby and I are slowly gathering which topics are best learned in what formats for our two children. We have a kindergartner and a preschooler, so when one thing works well for one, it's not always so for the other. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete

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