External Resources for Home Learning and Entertainment
It’s understandable to feel overwhelmed by home learning, but help is out there!
We have compiled a list of useful external resources to help with keeping your children entertained and learning – sometimes without even knowing that’s what they’re doing.
Whatever you need support with - from pro-active educational tools and fitness activities, to arts and crafts, virtual performances and exhibitions, as well as wellbeing and SEND support and parental and safeguarding guidance. We hope you’ll find them useful to keep you and your loved ones occupied, entertained and in good mental health.
- Twinkl – Primary and secondary teaching aid with a multitude of resources, including special needs differentiation. There is also a Parent Hub containing activities and games, Early Years activities, health and wellbeing section and a Home Learning Hubwhich is completely free and includes ready-made timetables of age-appropriate content that you can use at home.
- The Maths Factor.com- Carol Vorderman’s site with free access to maths that follow the National Curriculum for 4-12 year olds.
- Khan Academy Kids – An app with engaging ways to learn core subjects for children aged 2 to 7 years.
- Oak National Security - Three hours of daily learning resources and video lessons, worksheets and quizzes for primary children (four hours for secondary).
- Primaryreources.co.uk – Topic based spelling challenges, lesson plans, teaching ideas and free worksheets.
- Scholastic – Check out the resource bank with a host of teaching resources and education aids.
- TES – Over 100,000 resources split into early years, primary, secondary and special needs and free home learning packs.
- Royal Shakespeare Company’s Learning Zone – Resources for plays, live lessons, activity toolkits and behind the scenes information.
- Audible– free 30-day trial of the Amazon owned online book library.
- Storicise - British doctors, TV presenters and identical twin brothers, Dr Chris and Dr Xand have created an online platform to bring together knowledge, resources and fun and innovative activities designed to support children through the impact of Covid-19.
- Duolingo - Duolingo is a free language-learning website and mobile app with content tailored for kids.
- Dance Mat Typing - Found on BBC Bitesize, Dance Mat Typing offers a fun way to learn touch typing.
- Collins - As well as having lots of really useful targeted practice workbooks available to buy online, Collins also offer some free resources online to help with children’s learning at home, from ages 3 to 16 years.
- National Geographic Kids – packed with information, resources and quizzes.
- BBC Bitesize - extra resources for parents with practical advice and activities.
- Bitesize Revision app - For 14-16 year olds, this app includes GCSE Flashcards for Maths, English, English Literature, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Combined Science, Geography, History and PE.
- BBC Teach: Live Lessons - Bringing subjects to life with fun and interactive curriculum linked lessons featuring some of the BBC's biggest brands and presenters. BBC Teach Live Lessons are available for both primary and secondary aged children.
- Bitsize Support - Offering advice and tips for starting primary or secondary school, and looking at options when it comes to uni, college and apprenticeships. There are life and wellbeing tips including advice on starting a new relationship and advice from Young Minds on dealing with loneliness when you’re social distancing.
- BBC’s Education Offer - The BBC have brought together BBC Two, CBBC, BBC Red Button, BBC iPlayer and online to deliver a new education offer to children, teachers and parents. CBBC will see a three-hour block of primary school programming from 9am, including BBC Live Lessons and BBC Bitesize Daily, as well as other educational programming such as Our School and Celebrity Supply Teacher and much loved titles such as Horrible Histories, Art Ninja and Operation Ouch. BBC Two will cater for secondary students with programming to support the GCSE curriculum, with a least two hours of content each weekday.
From the BBC
Virtual Shows, Programmes, Performances and Tours
- Operation Ouch! Dr Chris, Dr Xand and Dr Ronx explore the ins and outs of the human body in a variety of eye-opening experiments. Available on CBBC, BBC iPlayer and YouTube.
- Horrible Histories – A hit CBBC show, Horrible Histories covers the funniest, yukiest and most gruesome bits of history, from Vicious Vikings and Aweful Egyptians, to the Slimy Stuarts and Terrible Tudors.
- See Shakespeare on demand at The Globe with these free-to-view performances.
- Check out the weekly play from The National Theatre’sproductions.
- The English National Ballet – Showing a weekly performance hosted on YouTube.
- Wigmore Hall – Watch live-steamed concerts for free.
- Pretend to travel the world. Go on a virtual tour of these 12 famous museums.
- Edinburgh Zoo live cam https://www.edinburghzoo.org.uk/webcams
- ‘PE with Joe’ on The Body Coach TV– Fitness instructor Joe Wicks takes a PE lesson for children 3 days a week, Monday, Wednesday and Friday at at 9am.
- Live daily questions with Dr Chris and Dr Xand are available on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube at 2.30pm each day.
- Actiphons– a fun phonics programme which aims to inspire children to learn their phonics by playing fun sporting activities.
- Cosmic Kids Yoga– Yoga, mindfulness and relaxation sessions aimed at the Over 3's. Interactive adventures which build strength, balance and confidence.
- Oti Mabuse(from Strictly Come Dancing) has fun, free family-friendly dance classes on YouTube.
Arts and Crafts
- The National Portrait Gallery– Over 150,000 pictures online including digital exhibition ‘Hold Still’. Spearheaded by The Duchess of Cambridge, Patron of the National Portrait Gallery, Hold Still is an ambitious community project to create a unique collective portrait of the UK during lockdown.
- Artist Kristjana S Williams has provided a free collage kitto print out, cut out and use to create a collage in her unique style.
- Open Culture – 113 free downloadable colouring booksfrom different museums amongst many other resources including over 1,000 free movies.
Science & Space
- NASA– explore activities, podcasts, videos and more, their whole library is now free to the public.
- Phet– Interactive simulations to help with sciences, earth studies and maths.
- Quizizz, Kahoot!Quizlet– Online resources to create or use ready-made quizzes and games as well as live versions which enable group quizzes.
Wellbeing & Good Mental Health
- The Happiness Lab – Include podcasts specifically to help deal with the Coronavirus pandemic - free on apple downloads.
- Headspace - Free meditations, sleep, and movement exercises are currently available from this app that promotes mindfulness and meditation.
- Government guidance on supporting children and young people’s mental health
- NSPCC- A range of resources available if you're worried a child may be struggling with their mental health or has anxiety about coronavirus (COVID-19).
- BBC Bitesize- Five ways to support children’s mental health.
Special Educational Needs
- Government SEND support resources
- National Autistic Society - has a range of specific tools and advice to support households with family members with autism.
- Twinkl – A variety of different types of Inclusion SEN resources available that help with Autism, Dyslexia, ADHD, hearing impairments, anxiety, attachment disorder and more. You can use their visual timetablefor daily routine at home, learn how tosupport mental illnessin children, or help Dyslexic studentswith reading.
- Coronavirus – A Children’s Guide, a free information book illustrated by the fabulous Axel Scheffler (of The Gruffalo fame).
- Vox covers 7 big questions children havefor parents during this crisis and how to answer them.
- Thinkuknow - worksheets offering online safety advice for the current situation – covering both primary and secondary age children, as well asJessie and Friends videosfor 4-7 year olds.
- ‘Safer Internet’offers advice and tips on safe remote learning.
- LGfloffers advice on safe remote learning for students and parents.
- Increasing data allowances on mobile devices to support disadvantaged children. This government scheme temporarily increases data allowances for mobile phone users on certain networks. This is so that children and young people can access remote education if their face-to-face education is disrupted.
- CEOP - Worth being aware that this is where you can refer concerns over online communications or sexual abuse.
- Childlineoffers 1:1 support and a guide to staying safe online for adults and children.
*Please note that this list is general signposting and is not a specific endorsement or recommendation by Bright Horizons. Should you utilise or download any of these resources, any exchange of data is solely between you and that provider – please note that these resources may be subject to their own terms and conditions and / or privacy notice. (As Bright Horizons has no control of the contents of the external resources, it can assume no responsibility or liability for these resources or the provider’s use of any data you share with them.). Please feel free to share with friends and family through our Family Resources page