Parents and teachers want to do everything they can to support their young learners. As a teacher, I get many questions about which websites are best for students for additional practice at home. This is a tricky question. There are so many great resources out there, but I am very cautious about children and the internet.
As wonderful and helpful as technology is, there are so many aspects to be aware of. As my own children were growing up, I told them that the internet was like a big city. I wouldn’t let them go to Boston or New York alone, so I wouldn’t let them go onto the internet alone. We kept their computers visible so that they could be monitored. Children going on-line, without being monitored, makes me uneasy. Pop-ups and inappropriate ads can sometimes be seen unexpectedly. Children can easily mistype an address and end up in the wrong place.
Before I share my favorite websites, please be aware that these sites may change. Please be sure to monitor your child and any sites that they may visit.
What are some websites that I use with my class? These are my five favorite free websites for elementary students.
Xtra Math : This is a great website for practicing computation and mastering those basic facts. Xtra Math gives the parent or teacher an opportunity to adjust the program and speed in which students may answer. The advanced level is as quick as 1.5 seconds, while the extended time level gives students 6 seconds to answer. Student progress can be tracked and measured over time to see growth. Students are given printable certificates as rewards for their progress and achievement.
Khan Academy : Khan Academy is an amazing, absolutely free resource for students, parents, and teachers. This resource focuses primarily on math for students in grades Kindergarten all the way through high school. For older students, there are resources in the subjects of science, art, history, economics, computing, and test prep, in multiple languages. Its user-friendly website offers instructional videos, as well as practice sessions that compliment the instruction. There is also an option for students to have a personalized experience by completing a warm-up as a pre-assessment. Khan Academy then provides tailored practice sessions and mastery challenges to maintain learned skills.
IXL Learning : IXL Learning offers free practice, as well as a paid subscription, for students in pre-K through high school. I have used the free features of this website to practice math and language arts skills. This program offers immediate feedback for students. When a student has difficulty, IXL provides an explanation that includes a review, remember, and solve to help support the student. Science and social studies practice is also available for grades 2-8. More features are available for purchase.
Spelling City : Spelling City offers free spelling and vocabulary practice for students. Parents and teachers can create spelling and vocabulary lists, confirming the part of speech and definition. There are a variety of learning activities and games. Again, there is a paid version that offers more features for purchase.
These next websites are for specifically designed for teachers. Teachers are given a code that can be shared with their students.
Learn Zillion : Learn Zillion offers videos, lessons, and practice for both mathematics and English Language Arts. These videos, lessons, and practice can be sorted by topic, grade level and by standards. One feature that I enjoy about Learn Zillion is that I can link videos to Google Classroom that can support a lesson that was taught that day. When a student is completing homework, he/she can refer to the video for additional support.
Front Row : Front Row offers students practice for both mathematics and English Language Arts. In mathematics, Front Row offers students pretests for all of the domains. Based on the student’s pretest, Front Row finds the appropriate level for each student. Similarly, in English Language Arts, pretests are given in both articles (reading comprehension) and word study. Front Row will find the appropriate level for the student. This program has so many features that offer differentiation, as well as providing progress and assessment data to inform instruction.
What are some of your favorite websites that support your elementary students? Do you have any experience with the ones I have shared? I would love to hear your thoughts.