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Kid-friendly Internet sites

Clare Croft and Cara Shepley

Special to SunSpot

March 8, 2000

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Ask Jeeves for Kids
Who wrote "Stuart Little?" Who can you turn to when important questions like these arise? Ask Jeeves. The site offers a kid-safe search engine capable of providing information on a variety of topics kids might need. Includes fun tours and an advice area.

Children's Television Workshop Games
Yuck it up with everyone's favorite characters: Big Bird, Bert, Ernie and Elmo. A colorful site dedicated to helping the preschool-aged child learn about letters and numbers. Includes "strange but true" facts, a "hit or dis" area and e-stickers.

Exploratorium
Online museum out of San Francisco answers all of your how-to questions about sports, animals and science. The site offers interactive games, online exhibits and monthly cool site links.

FirstGov for Kids
This site, sponsored by the U.S. government, is a fun and educational way for kids to learn about their country as well as countless other topics such as science, music and the environment. Developed and maintained by the Federal Consumer Information Center, FirstGov for Kids provides links to federal kids' sites, as well as links to some of the best kids' sites from other organizations. The Global Village features a Web site from each of the states.

How Stuff Works
No fancy titles here. You have questions? This site has answers. Learn about food, cars, college admission, home repairs and ham radios. Includes glossaries of terms, history of certain items and related links. Intended for preteens and older.

Information Please Kids Almanac
When you're eight years old and weigh 64 pounds, picking up an encyclopedia is quite a chore. This site offers an alternative to straining little backs by offering quick factual information about people and places. The "facts behind the news" feature takes stories from today's headlines and defines related key terms, people and ideas. There's also a word of the day with multiple choice answers and a homework center where kids can ask for help and study tips.

MaMaMedia
This eye-catching site offers games and projects that kids create themselves. There are also riddles to solve and animated stick characters that teach kids about angles and degrees.

NASA Kids
Have you ever wondered what a wave or a black hole really is? This site designed especially for kids by NASA explains all about space in an understandable, informative way while offering interactive games and activities. There are also space stories by kids, for kids. Learn about famous astronauts, shuttles, planets, stars and more.

National Geographic Kids
Packed full of obscure factoids and endless information, this site uses games, challenges and video clips to teach kids about the exciting world of animals and geography. You can also use the kids' site to look up an article from World or National Geographic magazines. The Cartoon Factory even allows kids to create their own captions to accompany existing cartoons.

Sanford and a Lifetime of Color's Art Education Resources and ArtEdventures
Play with art, create art and look at other people's art. The place to go for step-by-step instructions for hands-on art activities or to learn more about visual art and architecture. Help Carmine the Detective uncover the mysteries of art history. Directed at beginner-to-advanced art students.

Sports Illustrated for Kids
Read interviews with sports greats and find the answers to questions about any sport, ranging from the mainstream to the weird. If you want to get into a new sport, this is the place to check it out. Includes sports trivia, hangman, polls and fantasy sports.

Welcome to Kids Psych
Great animated games with a little purple guy named Oochy. Two categories offered: one for children 1-5 and one for ages 6-9. Games include logic and math puzzles.

World Almanac for Kids
In addition to factual tidbits, kids can find population statistics, useful facts about other countries and a timeline of U.S. history on this geography-based site. Contests, polls and quizzes can also be found here.

Yahooligans
Kids need to surf the Internet, too. The user-friendly children's version of the popular search engine Yahoo makes it easy to search for a wide variety of topics. It is a great introduction to the World Wide Web. Children can submit jokes, play backgammon or chess and submit questions to Ask Earl.