Common Sense

TOP PICKS | 26 TOOLS

Great Free Websites for Learning

If you're looking for easily accessible resources for your classroom, then you're in the right place. This list collects web-based learning tools that are completely free. Even so, they still get high marks from our editors for engagement and pedagogy. If your school or district is strapped for cash, you can still meet students' needs going with these cost-effective yet top-quality websites. We've curated them for each of the core subjects and all grade levels, so whether you're teaching elementary school, middle school, or high school, or focusing on arts, math, ELA, science, or social studies, you're sure to find something you can use with little hassle.

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Math

Matific

Engaging supplemental resource encourages conceptual understanding

Bottom line: A fun and engaging conceptual supplement for math lessons with easy-to-find standards-aligned activities.

NRICH

Untangle robust math problems for all ages; plenty of teaching support

Bottom line: It's an excellent classroom companion that can be implemented quickly with little adjustment and a high probability of success.

Math Snacks

Satisfying mathematical treats kids will gladly gobble up

Bottom line: Teachers and students will excel with engaging, often funny material; it's a pleasure to explore these extensive resources.

Get the Math

Solve real-life algebra problems with diverse crew, delightful video

Bottom line: Fantastic proof that algebra is used to solve real problems in kid-approved professions -- basketball, music, and fashion.

GeoGebra

Create, share, and modify math models and simulations

Bottom line: Free open-source software that lets teachers build or adapt learning experiences to meet their kids' needs.

ELA

ReadWriteThink

Excellent free resource for all things reading and writing

Bottom line: A language arts teacher's dream; lesson plans, professional development, and all-around quality support.

ReadWorks Digital

Research-based site makes it easy to assign, differentiate readings

Bottom line: An effective digital reinvention of the trusted ReadWorks platform that makes it simple to distribute and track high-quality reading assignments.

Bookopolis

Cute social network lets kids log books and connect with other readers

Bottom line: Kids-only social network gives students a safe space to connect, allows students to showcase and share their reading progress.

CommonLit

Feature-rich literacy resource offers superb support for readers

Bottom line: Access a hefty collection of reliable, ready-to-print, leveled passages that allow you to tailor lessons, assign online reading, and track progress.

Genius

Collaborative tool lets users annotate songs, literature, web content

Bottom line: Students can collaboratively engage in the process of annotation and analysis with various texts -- both within the forum and on the web.

Science

NOVA

Compelling science videos have high-quality classroom applications

Bottom line: Stellar simulations, teacher guides, and other activities can stand on their own, and they're enhanced with high-quality video content.

Lawrence Hall of Science: 24/7 Science

Outdated site still useful for science games and investigations

Bottom line: These interesting and highly educational activities, though a bit disorganized, still challenge and engage kids in important ways.

Mystery Science

Big questions, kids' curiosity drive impressive science curriculum

Bottom line: These powerful science units capitalize on elementary school students' natural curiosity.

Code.org

Popular games, big names get kids and teachers pumped to program

Bottom line: A well-planned, -produced, and -curated set of free resources bound to get kids hooked on learning to code.

PhET Interactive Simulations

Massive cache of excellent (and free!) science and math simulations

Bottom line: Instantly add meaningful lab experiences to math and science classrooms for exactly $0? It's tough to beat that.

Social Studies

PenPal Schools

Give students global perspective with pen pal projects in any subject

Bottom line: A thoughtful, ready-to-go platform that facilitates authentic, cross-cultural collaboration.

Facing History and Ourselves

A wealth of resources explore racism, prejudice, and anti-Semitism

Bottom line: These valuable materials empower students to understand and address difficult ethical choices -- past and present.

Beyond the Bubble

Top-quality assessments challenge students to think like historians

Bottom line: A ready-to-go, pedagogically sound route for refocusing formative assessment on critical thinking and literacy rather than memorization.

Global Oneness Project

Dynamic multimedia resources explore life experiences around the world

Bottom line: Unique approach to incorporating global issues into the curriculum; monthly stories capture interdisciplinary topics.

Big History Project

Fascinating look at life's bigger questions with a fresh perspective

Bottom line: A wonderfully innovative and divergent way to teach foundational concepts in history, humanities, critical thinking, and science.

Arts

Artsonia Kids Art Museum

Online art museum empowers students to exhibit, explain their work

Bottom line: A well-loved digital art museum that allows students to share work and reflect on their artistic process while helping teachers assess student understanding of artistic concepts.

ArtsEdge

Impressive cross-curricular resource helps put the A in STEAM

Bottom line: A useful and engaging resource for integrating the arts into a variety of other subject areas.

Autodesk Design Academy

Outstanding project-based tutorials for popular engineering software

Bottom line: The projects found here are a great way to teach and learn digital design; all are truly fantastic (and free!), with everything you need ready to go.

Google Arts & Culture

Excellent curation and an unmatched art collection invite exploration

Bottom line: A one-stop shop for a vast amount of compellingly curated and contextualized art, but it's lacking educator supports.

Noteflight

Safe, collaborative space for creating and sharing original music

Bottom line: This useful, well-constructed music composition tool lets classrooms collaborate and comment on student-created songs.

Adobe Spark

Super-flexible design tool for crafting fab images, videos, and sites

Bottom line: This free, one-stop shop for creating sleek graphics, web stories, and animated videos is incredibly easy to use and challenges students to think critically about visual presentation.

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