Safe online games to play at school can be fun and educational.
Miniclip is a site devoted to quick, fun games for players of all ages. However, not all of its choices are better suited for school-use.
Create a penguin version of yourself and interact with other "penguins" from around the world as you chat and play games in Club Penguin. The game is always moderated, and if an older user signs up, he or she is reminded that this is a kid-safe area and swearing, bullying and generally mean behavior are not allowed. Even penguin names are checked for appropriateness. There are two chat options when players enter the game. Standard safe chat is filtered and moderated, but there is still the chance for something offensive to slip past the safeguards. The ultimate safe chat only allows users to send and receive pre-written messages, so they can enjoy the fun of chatting without the risk of inappropriate content.
Puzzle games like Crossword Daily are safe online games to play at school. These games are secure because they don't offer a multi-player option, and many of them can also be educational, building thinking and reasoning skills.
Up Beat is a fun rhythm game. It will especially appeal to players who are familiar with Dance Dance Revolution and similar console games. However, this game does require music for the best experience, so kids should only play it if they are allowed to wear headphones at school.
Games from Aplusmath.com adds math skills to familiar games. For instance, Matho combines Bingo and math problems. Players are shown multiplication, division or addition problems and click on answer squares until they get five in a row. In Planet Blaster, players shoot the correct answer with their spaceship, adding a fun visual to the standard math facts. In addition to focusing on addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, there is also an algebra-based Planet Blaster. All games are offered in Java and non-Java versions for maximum compatibility with all computer models.
Games from Favorite Shows
Many television networks and shows for kids offer fun games on their Web sites. These games will be advertisement-heavy, so teachers may not want to recommend them to the whole class, but they are generally safe because they are designed with young users in mind. Check out the following sites for games featuring your favorite characters:
FunBrain.com offers educational games to help improve reading, math and science skills. Change Maker asks players to select the correct amount of change when given the cost of a purchase. The Plural Girls help young readers choose the correct plural of common words. Proton Don asks players to find elements on the periodic table. In addition to being educational, there are no interactive elements in this game like team play or chat, so young players don't have to worry about accidentally coming across inappropriate language or potentially dangerous people.
Choosing Safe Online Games to Play at School
The games mentioned in this article represent only a small fraction of the games available online. Keep these thoughts in mind when choosing and evaluating other games for school use:
- Is the game one-player or multi-player? If the game is multi-player, you never know who may be playing against you, opening the door for unsafe contact with other users.
- What other games or features are available on the home site? Some otherwise innocent games can rest side-by-side with excessively violent games or other inappropriate content such as off-color jokes.
- What information does the site collect from players? If the site requires you to create a login, do you have to reveal your home address or phone number? Asking for an e-mail address is standard for online registration, but you may want to reconsider if a game requires additional personal information.
- If there is any opportunity for players to interact, and are there filters or moderators in place?