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Three (more) educational Web sites to make your kids smarter

Flickr: iboy_danielNow that school is officially underway throughout most of the country, help your kids flex their brain muscles with these three terrific educational sites:

NickNews - Yes, that Nick. The folks at Nickelodeon have done a great job putting together a news Web site just for kids. It covers everything from the presidential election to poverty in America in a way that teens and pre-teens can grasp. Have your kids use it as a way to keep up on what's happening in the world, as well as a place to do research on current events.

Funbrain - This is the ultimate "education-disguised-as-fun" Web site. It helps teach important academic basics in ways that are nearly irresistible to kids: math skill builders are hidden in arcade games, reading enhancers are stashed in Web comics. It's as clever as it gets. As an nice added touch, there are even blogs targeted at different age groups.

EdHelper - This one's more for parents and teachers than kids. Use EdHelper to design worksheets, games, and other printables to give kids the extra practice they need in spelling, math, or reading. Total access to the site is available at various pricing levels, but the free area will be more than adequate for most families.

There are activities for every age and grade level from pre-k to high school. In one area of the site, you can enter your child's spelling list for the week and up pops a crossword puzzle using all the words. Another section offers SAT vocabulary word lessons for 9 - 12 graders, and yet another section contains writing prompts and critical thinking exercises. What the site lacks in visual pizzaz, it more than makes up for in educational value.

Stay tuned later this week when we explore ways to find educational software that you can download right to your computer. For even more educational Web site ideas, see this post.

Tags: education, educational, learning, school, tutor, tutoring