Things to Do Online for Kids

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While the Internet can be an educational tool and a source of entertainment for children, too much Internet use may be problematic, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. It recommends that parents limit their children's computer use to no more than one or two hours per day. In addition to overuse, accessing inappropriate content online can also pose a problem, so monitoring your child's activities online is important. Fortunately, there are many Internet sites that provide age-appropriate activities for children to do online.

While the Internet can be an educational tool and a source of entertainment for children, too much Internet use may be problematic, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. It recommends that parents limit their children's computer use to no more than one or two hours per day. In addition to overuse, accessing inappropriate content online can also pose a problem, so monitoring your child's activities online is important. Fortunately, there are many Internet sites that provide age-appropriate activities for children to do online.

Play Educational Games

The Internet is home to many websites that host educational games for children. For kids who love cartoons, PBS Kids hosts many free educational games that feature the characters on their popular television series. Once on the site, kids can play games like "How Big Are You?" a "Dinosaur Train"-inspired math game that has children estimate the length of a dinosaur shown using smaller animals as the measuring tool. The site also hosts alphabet-themed games that teach children their letters. From "Sesame Street" to "Caillou," PBS has online games from these shows that teach and reinforce letter recognition and sounds. For children ages 3 and older, the Cool Math 4 Kids website offers various types of math games from geometry games to strategy games that children may enjoy.

Print Coloring and Activity Pages

In addition to doing things online, kids can find and print coloring and activity pages to do once they log off. Kaboose has sections of its website dedicated to seasonal and holiday-themed activity and coloring pages, in addition to the regular assortment of printouts it offers. For children who love animals, "National Geographic" magazine has a free online coloring book that children can access. They simply click on the picture they'd like to color and print it.

Socialize

While Facebook is designed for children age 13 and older, there are social networking sites designed for younger children. WhyVille, for example, is geared toward 8 to 15 year olds and involves playing games. While chatting is initially restricted to using scripted phrases, once a user passes a "chat license test" they are granted the freedom to type their own chat phrases, according to Parenting.com. While WhyVille is free, other subscription-based social networking websites geared toward children as young as kindergartners are available.

Watch Videos

For children who are eager to catch a glimpse of their favorite show or character online, some websites offer video programming that features popular kid's shows and characters. The Thomas and Friends website, for example, plays short videos from the show that children can watch with the click of the mouse. Nickelodeon's Nick Jr. site also hosts videos and clips from its popular kid's shows like "SpongeBob SquarePants."

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