Posts Tagged ‘audio books’

Open Source Literary Works & Lessons & More (CSAW)

December 1st, 2010

Hi!  It’s Wednesday, December 1st, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

Recommended Website:
Open Culture

Age Range: All (There’s something for everyone here.)
 
Wow! Wow! Wow! Would you like access to “the best free cultural and educational media on the web”?  Your wish is my command through today’s amazing website. 

OpenCulture.com offers “free, high-quality cultural & educational media for the worldwide lifelong learning community.” You’ll find enriching, intelligent literary and cultural works delivered in a variety of ways to suit every learning style. 

When you get to the website simply use the menu to access a terrific selection of free:

*Audio Books and E-Books – Enjoy fiction and literature, non-fiction, poetry, and get access to an amazing list of audio book podcast websites.

*Online Courses – Take over 250 free courses in Literature, History, Math, Science, Engineering, Economics, Political Science, Philosophy and more.

*Movies – Access free movies online, “intelligent video sites,” “smart YouTube collections,” and university videos.

*Foreign Language Lessons – Learn Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish and more.

You’ll also finding an archive of free resources to learn about Music, Art, Science, Technology, and much, much more!

Developed in 2006, by the Director & Associate Dean of Stanford University’s Continuing Studies Program and some terrific techies, this site is dedicated to “bringing relevant, perspective-changing information to large audiences.”

This is a terrific library of resources that you can use again and again. Bookmark it to return often.  Open Culture earns a ClickSchooling Award (CSAW) for excellence in providing free educational content via the World Wide Web.

FREE Audio & Video Literature for Kids – and More!

May 27th, 2009

Recommended Website:
Kids Learn Out Loud

Age Range: 4-18 and beyond

This is a commercial website that offers quite a few FREE, educational audio books, MP3 downloads, and podcasts just for kids and teens. This review focuses on the free LITERATURE resources, but you can also access titles in other subject categories such as art, history, science, social sciences, and more.

When you get to the site, you’ll see a menu of free literature categories that are available including:

  • American Classics — Includes titles such as the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Call of the Wild, The Prince and the Pauper, A Little Princess, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Pollyanna, and more.
  • European Classics — Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Robinson Crusoe, The Tale of Peter Rabbit, The Secret Garden, Black Beauty, The Adventures of Pinocchio, and more.
  • Short Stories — American Indian Fairy Tales, Agatha Christie Radio Mysteries, Rumpelstiltskin, The Little Match Girl, Rapunzel and more.
  • Ancient & Medieval Classics — Aesop’s Fables, The Illiad for Boys and Girls
  • Drama — Orson Welles’ radio program, The Mercury Theater On The Air
  • World Classics — Anne of Green Gables, Japanese Fairy Tales, Shakespeare, West Africa Folk Tales, and more.

Click on any category and a new page opens with a list of offerings. Click on “play” to hear/watch the story. Click on the title and another window opens where you can play the recording and find additional information about it. In some cases, you may find additional learning resources.

When you are through exploring the literature section, refer to the menu on the left side of the page under “Kids Free Stuff” to access the other subject categories. You can also browse by age range: under 8, 9-12, and teens.

While there is plenty of free content here, there are many more titles available for a fee.

The “Kids Learn Out Loud” website is part of the larger “LearnOutLoud.com” website that offers downloads more suitable to adult audiences — some for free, most for a fee.

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Are You The Parent of a Preschooler? You’ll Love Universal Preschool’s Learning Calendar! It’s chock-full of fun, easy activities & time-saving resources for learning with little ones all year long! Get your copy today…

DID YOU MISPLACE A ClickSchooling Review? Do you need to find an educational website — fast! Visit the ClickSchooling archives.

Top Language Arts Websites

January 7th, 2009

Continuing with our recap, here are ClickSchooling’s Top 7 Language Arts sites for 2008:

Note: The links below take you to the ClickSchooling archives where you can read the original review. From there, you can click on a link to access the site.

Recommended Websites:

Read, Write, Think

Age Range: 5-17 (Grades K-12)

This is one of the best Language Arts sites I’ve visited! It provides high quality resources in reading and language arts instruction through free, Internet-based content. Includes a not-to-be-missed CALENDAR that displays literacy activities associated with current events. You’ll also find an array of K-12 lesson plans that include detailed instructions plus worksheets, interactives, and links to resources. Get online games, webquests, puzzles, writing starters, etc. Use technology to develop literacy skills – whether you are a traditional homeschooler or unschooler! This received a ClickSchooling Award for Excellence.

Cyberspace + Library = Cybrary Cybrarian

Age Range: 8-13 (Grades 3-8)

This AMAZING website earned a ClickSchooling Award for Excellence. Designed by a librarian, it’s a database of links to children’s websites on many subjects including Language Arts. You’ll find offerings such as “I LOVE TO READ!” that features links to sites of award-winning authors and illustrators, online stories, picture books, and more. It contains a virtual library of children’s magazines from “Time Magazine for Kids” to “Zoobooks.” Visit the “Newseum” — an interactive museum of news. Get access to online encyclopedias, dictionaries, maps, and answers to your questions at this virtual library reference desk.

Free Human-Read Audio Books Librivox – Acoustical Liberation of Books in the Public Domain

Age Range: 4-18 (and beyond)

This website is one of the most frequently visited among ClickSchoolers. It offers free children’s books in the public domain that you can listen to online or download for later use offline. There is more than an entire year’s worth of audio bedtime stories and books here, including the works of well-known children’s authors. Plus, there are free audio books for mom and dad too!

The Riggs Institute: The 28 Rules for English Spelling

Age Range: 7-18 (and beyond)

The Riggs Institute is a commercial website but they offer a FREE list of the “28 Rules for English Spelling” on their website that you can print out and use at home.

Spelling City

Age Range: 5-13 (design for grades K-8)

This free site helps children improve their spelling skills by using both visual and auditory input to improve retention. Contains over 25,000 words, including plurals, contractions, and future and past tenses. You can enter and save your own spelling lists too and play games with spelling words that are automatically generated by a program at the site.

CyberSeminar: How To Write A Basic Sentence and Paragraph

Age Range: 7-11 (approximately)

Get very easy, step-by-step instructions on how to write a basic sentence and how to write a basic paragraph free!

Lookybook

Age Range: 3-10 (approximately)

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Are You The Parent of a Preschooler? You’ll Love Universal Preschool’s Learning Calendar! It’s chock-full of fun, easy activities & time-saving resources for learning with little ones all year long! Get your copy today…

DID YOU MISPLACE A ClickSchooling Review? Do you need to find an educational website fast! Visit the ClickSchooling archives.

Free Human-Read Audio Books

April 23rd, 2008

Recommended Website:
Librivox’s Free Human-Read Audio Classics for Children

Age Range: All (Something for everyone. As always, parents should help select material appropriate for each child.)

This terrific website offers free children’s books in the public domain that you can listen to online or download for later use offline. (Plus, there are free audio books for mom and dad too!) Keep a supply of titles handy for those days when you’re unable to read to the kids – or listen to them when you’re traveling in the car or on a plane. There is more than an entire year’s worth of audio bedtime stories and books listed in the “Children’s” category, including the works of such well-known authors as:

  • Aesop (Fables)
  • Alcott, Louisa May (Eight Cousins, Little Women, etc.)
  • Baum, L. Frank (Oz books)
  • Burnett, Frances Hodgson (Little Lord Fauntleroy, Little Princess, Secret Garden, etc.)
  • Carroll, Lewis (Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, etc.)
  • Collodi, Carlo (Adventures of Pinocchio, available in English and Italian!)
  • Dickens, Charles (A Child’s History of England)
  • Dodge, Mary Mapes (Hans Brinker or The Silver Skates)
  • Grahame, Kenneth (Wind in the Willows)
  • Grimm, Jacob (Grimm’s Fairy Tales)
  • Harris, Joel Chandler (Uncle Remus)
  • Kipling, Rudyard (Just So Stories, Jungle Book, etc.)
  • Lamb, Charles (Tales from Shakespeare)
  • Lofting, Hugh (Story of Doctor Doolittle, etc.)
  • Montgomery, Lucy Maud (Anne of Green Gables, etc.)
  • Nesbit, E. (Five Children and It, The Railway Children, etc.)
  • Potter, Beatrix (Peter Rabbit, etc.)
  • Pyle, Howard (Merry Adventures of Robin Hood, etc.)
  • Sewell, Anna (Black Beauty: The Autobiography of a Horse)
  • Stevenson, Robert Louis (Child’s Garden of Verses, Treasure Island, etc.)
  • Twain, Mark (Huckleberry Finn, Tom Sawyer, etc.)
  • Wiggin, Kate Douglas (Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, etc.)
  • Williams, Margery (Velveteen Rabbit)
  • … and many, many more.

Click any title to see a brief synopsis before downloading/listening.

But that’s not all! Parents may like to browse the other categories as well. These include adventure, animals, biography, history, spy stories, teen/young adult, and many others.

This site can be searched for a specific book by title and author.

In addition, you can view the titles of books currently in progress, and beside each of these is a link to request to be notified by email when this book is completed. :)

You can request that a favorite book (in the public domain) be recorded, and older students can volunteer to help record or proof-listen. This is a great community service as well as excellent language arts practice.

Note: There is an overlap between these books and the ones you would find in Project Gutenberg or Archive.org. This is because Librivox allows both of these sites to house their entire collection of completed works. However, Librivox maintains the best-catalogued and most easily searchable list of these titles. Also, only Librivox itself includes a brief synopsis for each completed title, lists the works currently in progress, allows you to request email notification upon completion of desired books in progress, allows you to request specific titles, and allows you to participate in the recording and editing process and their lively forum as well.

Additional Note: This review focuses on the “Children’s” page. The rest of this site is not specifically geared for children, so parental preview and guidance is, as always, advised.

Books are continually being added to this collection, so bookmark it and return often.

Also, don’t forget that these books can be burned onto CD’s for on-the-road education, also known as CarSchooling.

Enjoy! :)

DID YOU MISPLACE A ClickSchooling Review? Do you need to find an educational website – fast! Visit the ClickSchooling archives at: http://www.homefires.com/clickschool/archive.asp.

Free Classic Audio Books!

January 9th, 2008

Recommended Website:
Free Classic Audiobooks

ClickSchooling list member Sonya recommended this website that offers free classic audiobooks that you can download and listen to. There are over 50 titles in MP3 files or M4B for iPod. Some of the titles include:

  • Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
  • Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan
  • Treasure Island by R. L. Stevenson
  • Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
  • War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells
  • Swiss Family Robinson by Johann Wyss
  • The Call of the Wild by Jack London
  • Legend of Sleepy Hollow by W. Irving
  • Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
  • The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
  • The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • Dorothy and the Wizard by L. Frank Baum
  • The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin
  • Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe
  • The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Click on any title and a new page opens with a Wikipedia summary of the book, and links to download the material. Depending on the size of the file it may take several minutes to download. If you select the MP3 file, once downloaded, the audio book will launch and begin playing automatically. There are no pictures or text – just narration. So, if you have one of these classic books, you may want to use it and follow along as the narrator reads the story.

Classic Children’s Audio Books

September 26th, 2007

Recommended Website:
Wired For Books

ClickSchooler MaryAnna suggested this website sponsored by Ohio University that provides unabridged, dramatic audiobooks online. We have featured the “Kids Corner” of this site previously, that featured audio books and a narrated slideshow of Beatrix Potter books, such as “Peter Rabbit.” However, they have added several audiobooks to the website in the children’s section, and there are offerings in the section for older students and adults that make this worth another visit.

First of all visit the Kids Corner.

Age Range: 3-10 (approximately)

Here you can listen to beloved children’s books by Beatrix Potter in numerous languages. You will also find some new audio stories including:

  • Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
  • Grimm’s Fairy Tales
  • Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling

You can even listen to a Radio interview with Mister Rogers!

Next, check out the MP3 Page

Age Range: 11 and Up (approximately)

What you will find on this page is an archive of radio interviews with various authors of books – most written for the general adult book market.  (Note: I did not listen to these interviews, and cannot comment on the
content. Therefore, parents [as always] should preview the material to determine suitability for your own children.)

Scroll about 3/4 way down the page until you come to “The Fall of the House of Usher” by Edgar Allan Poe. Continue to scroll down and you will see “The Poems of Walt Whitman.” Below that you will see some of the same selections that were in the “Kids Corner,” and below that, a variety of plays by William Shakespeare including, “The Merchant of Venice,” “Much Ado About Nothing,” and “MacBeth.” Click on any one to access the audio file and listen online.

This site provides a convenient way to hear wonderful children’s stories as well as classic literature for older students. Enjoy!

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