I remember being so impressed there were computers in my daughter’s junior kindergarten class. It did not take long before she was comfortable navigating her way around a computer. Now I learn useful tips and shortcuts from my eight year old. That is humbling.
The other day I casually made one of those stupid “When I was little” comments when a few of our children’s friends came over to play. Never say anything that begins with “When I was little” unless you really want to feel prehistoric. The kids were chatting about their favourite computer games while sitting down for a snack. I piped in with “When I was little, there were no computers at school or at home…we used typewriters”. The room fell silent. Everyone turned to look at me in amazement. No computers? What is a typewriter? Followed by the inevitable “Wow, you are OLD!” comments. That night before bed, I dug out a neglected jar of wrinkle cream and tried to target certain areas.
The girl’s school does a great job educating children about environmental issues. They come home with new earth friendly ideas, (see my post on candlelit dinners) pressure us to make more green changes…and be consistent.
Now that the children are a little older, they are starting to learn about pollution, endangered animals and the effects of climate change. My husband and I do not always know how to answer their questions. While searching for information I discovered a few educational web sites that I like to explore with the kids. They talk about environmental conservation, concerns, wildlife protection and making a difference in the community. The best part is they deliver the information in an interactive, and fun way. These websites are not just for children or teachers – I learn something every time we play a game or take a quiz.
First, I must give my cyber safety shpeel. Just a reminder to make sure your children’s computer time is a safe experience. Sit down with them, read instructions together and pay attention to their activities on line. Sometimes being in the same room while they are working on the computer is not enough supervision. Be careful and cautious.
Here are three educational websites that I think are worth checking out.
Our kids like the People & Places section (See and read about the 7 wonders of the world or tour Greece)
Space and Science section (Find out if Pluto is no longer a planet)
Just Joking (Me, I am not so crazy about the jokes after a few weeks – but our kids love it and it gives them a good reason to call the Grandparents)
Recipes from around the world (like Kwanzaa Creole Bread Pudding)
What a good site for quizzes! We love quizzes.
This is a great resource for information under Homework Help – Climate change, renewable energy, First Nations & Inuit, Earth Day, Waste and Wildlife.
Very good print outs for colouring. A fun craft for young children.
This is my favourite site.
We like Critter Corner to read about all the critters of the world. It shines a light on endangered species.
Our Earth discusses our environment and environmental issues in an easy and direct way.
Natures Notes taught us about Phenology. (Nope. I am not telling you what that means) It encourages observation, something all children do so well.
They even discuss environmental jobs…like a Hydrogeologist. How cool is that?
Children learn from modeling. They follow our lead in life and when it comes to environmental issues, we should try to discuss, be enthusiastic, and act. If you are curious or interested in eco-friendly websites for children these are my suggestions to start. Have fun!