Get Online, Get Greener ecosite

When it comes to kids and computers, you may be torn between handing over the mouse and keyboard, or shuffling Junior outside to get back to nature. Never fear—there exists a balance and we’ll show you where to start.

1. National Geographic Kids has been around since 1975. An interactive and appealing mix of articles, games, videos and activities for kids that focus on wildlife, science, technology, and world wonders, this site will have you thinking, too.

2. The Washington State Department of Ecology sorts out the nitty gritty recycling details, and includes some fun games to challenge you both.

3. The US Department of Energy features Tinker Bell guiding kids through some educational activities, including real action items for the home the kids can do together.

4. Holiday appropriate Treetures teaches us how important trees are to our environment. Seattle’s Saving Water Partnership features a nifty game to give kids—and parents—tips about household water conservation. Upon completion, they learn how much water they saved, rank their high score, and can print out winner’s certificates and an at-home checklist. 4.

5. Let’s wrap up with Kidsrgreen—a clever site that has games, songs, and links to even more sites for next time.

NOTE:  The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) considers computer time screentime too. Guidelines and resources are available from the AAP’s SafetyNet site.

–Matina Fresenius