Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Fall 2015 Website
Ages: 3 - 7 yrs.

Curiosityville is a subscription-based website that provides a wealth of activities and lesson plans for children ages three through eight. Children can choose from six different animal characters to "play" with in an online area. Each animal hails from a different country, and each likes different activities; for example, Rosie likes science activities, Ruby enjoys reading and writing, and Joe asks kids to help him build things. The characters preside over online games that are scaled to various ages and learning levels. Parents and educators can also search through a collection of hands-on activities that often incorporate multiple disciplines; one lesson plan asks children to read or hear the story of Abiyoyo and then make a ukulele, and another asks them to tell a story that uses numbers in various ways. A section for clubs offers ideas for offline group activities, and another section provides training videos for educators.

The site is primarily organized around the needs of classroom educators; teachers can set up class accounts, with students' names entered, and can track students' progress, suggesting individualized reinforcement activities or introducing new topics as needed. Games and activities are meant to align with the Common Core standards and the Frameworks for 21st Century Learning, which makes the site helpful both for classroom teachers and for homeschooling families looking for curriculum ideas. The site is also relatively easy for children to play with and navigate, and the games and activities are engaging and well designed. Parents who simply want a few extension activities and educational online games may not wish to pay the subscription price; but parents and educators who need to track the progress of their students through several different disciplines will find the organization and resources of this site to be worth the price.

Naomi Lesley   ©2015 Parents' Choice
Naomi Lesley taught middle and high school English for six years. She is currently in a doctoral program at the George Washington University, focusing on American young adult literature.

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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

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