Stuck at home with kids and teens due to the virus? The White Plains Public Library has you covered with these suggestions from Josh Carlson, Manager of Youth Services.
Some of the sites listed here may be offering some content free of charge or may be offering free access currently in response to the virus, but will move to a charge model again in the future. Please take care when using these sites to avoid unwanted charges.
Online Reading, Storytimes and Read Alouds from the Library
These resources require a library card to access.
- Libby: Access an abundance of digital materials, including eBooks for kids from the Library’s catalog.
- Kanopy Kids: Available for unlimited use with your library card for the next 30 days, in addition to great kids movies and TV shows, Kanopy Kids offers a wide-variety of picturebook read-aloud videos.
- Tumble Book Library: Story book videos, read alouds, read alongs, and a variety of activities.
- Comics Plus: Do your kids and teens like comics? A great selection of e-comics, including many popular titles, available online.
Online Learning Resources from the Library
These resources require a library card to access.
- Tutor.com – available Monday-Friday, 9am-10pm, FREE one-on-one tutoring in a variety of subjects.
- Kids InfoBits – educational articles and resources on a variety of topics
- Britannica School – online encyclopedia featuring articles, videos and activities
- Learning Express Library – online practice tests and study guides, including school work skills building and college admission practice tests
In addition to the Library’s online and streaming resources, check out this list of sites selected by Library Staff:
Great Ideas for Activities and Experiences
- A quickly growing thread of resources can be found by following #kidlitquarantine on Twitter
- List of Education Companies Offering Free Subscriptions Due to School Closings
- List of Streaming Author and Illustrator Programming
- Indoor Games for Quarantined Families from Fatherly
- MommyPoppins Coronavirus Guide – 100s of Activities and Resources
- Authors Everywhere
- A Great List of Podcasts for Kids from NYT
- 250 Creative Ways to Keep Your Family Sane During the COVID-19 Crisis
- Lunch Doodles with Author/Illustrator Mo Willems
Learning at Home Resources
- Free Learn at Home Courses from scholastic
- Other Goose Homeschooling Lesson Plans, Activities and Resources – FREE for 3 weeks
- Homeschooling resources, and great lists of activities, from Motherly
- Daily Virtual Learning eNewsletter
- PBS Kids At Home Daily Learning eNewsletter
- Writing Prompts for Kids and Teens from the NYT
- Khan Academy Free Daily Curriculum – Daily lesson plan curriculum with free activities for PreK – Grade 12
- Surprise! You’re Homeschooling – resources from Westchester Kids Out and About
- The Home School Mom – subscribe for free and access lots of downloadable resources
- Ranger Rick and Ranger Rick Jr – free to access magazines for the next few months, along with parent and teacher guides
Picture Books, Read Alouds, and Storytimes
- Storyline Online
- A List of of Picture Book and Read Aloud Video Sites
- A huge listing of authors reading online from their works with dates and times to view the streams
- How to Make Reading Fun with Your Kids – 25 ideas
- Fun and Effective Ways to Read with Children (in English and Spanish)
- Make the Most of Reading Aloud
- Reading Tips for Parents (in multiple languages)
- Five Tips for Parents to Rock the Read-Aloud
- Resources for Reading Aloud with your Child
- 30 Awesome Read Aloud Tips for Parents
- CodeMonkey – Games and Activities to Learn Coding
- TinkerCad – Learn and practice 3D design online
- Gamestar Mechanic – Learn to Design Video Games
- Scratch – learn coding, design games, share and play games from around the world
- SciShow Kids – fun, informative science videos
- National Geographic Kids
- Crash Course Kids – fun, informative science videos
- A great list of at home STEAM activities that help to learn about what viruses are, why soap and handwashing is important, and more
- STEM Activity Clearinghouse – so much here to do
- STEAM Activities from Little Bins for Little Hands
- The Happy Scientist
- 30 Virtual Field Trips
- Famous museums offering virtual tours
- Virtual Theme Park Rides from Disneyland and Disney World
Other Recommended Sites
Songs and Music
Need some music and songs to go with your at home storytime, or to just have a dance party to? Here are some great sites with Songs and Music:
Disclaimer: Subscription boxes are not free, they do cost money, and I am not endorsing any particular box or company, just making some broad recommendations on a little research. There are many boxes out there to choose from that may meet your needs and interests better than these.
So you’re stuck at home. You need something fresh to do – something fun, educational, and perhaps surprising for your kids. A subscription box service might be just what you need. There are so many options out there, for all ages and interests. They come with all the materials, instructions and lesson plans. Plus, getting a surprise activity in the mail could be just the ticket to get your kids engaged. Plus, many are offering discounts to help encourage at home learning experiences, and many offer the ability to order individual boxes rather than subscribing to a monthly plan.
Here’s some subscription box services I like:
- Little Passports: I can personally vouch for how awesome this one is, as my daughter received it while she was 3-4 years old. Fun, educational, great activities to learn about different countries and cultures. Boxes for ages 3-5, 6-8 and 9+.
- Kiwi Crates: Offering a wide variety of fun and educational learning boxes on STEM, Maker, Science, Geography, and Art topics for every age group from 0-24 months to 14-104 years.
- Literati Book Clubs: With each delivery, kids will receive an assortment of five great books. Five book club age groups to choose from. The Literati Book Clubs site also provides some useful online resources and at home activities.
- Owl Crate Jr.: Focuses on providing a great middle grade book to read, along with related fun items and activities.
- Brick Loot: LEGO kits and projects by mail. I want this!
- Sensory TheraPlay: “Curated for children with autism/sensory needs in mind, but suitable for children of all abilities.” A box of 5-6 items to help manage anxiety, have fun, self-regulate and engage in sensory play. Box options for kids and teens/adults.
- Superpower Academy: Boxes for ages 5-10 that feature secret missions, STEM/maker activities, parent/teacher guides, comic books, and a general purpose to create empathetic, caring and courageous kids. What’s not to like?
- Sago Mini: Fun make and play boxes on various themes for preschoolers.
- Club SciKidz Labs: Serious STEM activities in a box with great components, lots of experiments, for ages 7+, or younger with adult supervision.
- Little Bookish Wardrobe: Designed to encourage dramatic play alongside reading, each box contains dress up elements to go along with the books included. Box options for ages 3-7.
- Amazon STEM Club: With options for ages 3-4, 5-7, 8-13, Amazon’s STEM themed box is also one of the least expensive options out there.