Childtopia is a kid-friendly educational portal with hundreds of interactive games. Developed in September 2004, Childtopia.com is a resource of educational games for kids that can be used in school and home environment.
Every activity on the website has an English, Spanish, French, Euskara and Catalan language versions. Childtopia.com gives children and parents several categories to choose from, which include:
- Educational Games – This category includes numbers games that teach kids all about music (how to find notes, playing percussions, composing music, musical memory, identifying instruments, etc) and memory (such as ‘odd one out’ and ‘pairs’). It also has games focused in language (like word search and word puzzles); math (buy/sell, domino, calculations, identifying numbers, etc); skills (tic-tac-toe), creativity (coloring, stickers, etc) and observation (pairs or jigsaw mania).
- Photo-Jigsaw – This category has hundreds of photos that are turned into jigsaw puzzles. Kids can choose from the photos already saved in the library, or they can create their own jigsaw puzzles (by uploading an image from their computer or by taking a webcam photo), and then solve the puzzle afterward.
- Arts & Crafts – This category is an extensive collection of art projects and crafts, each with a step-by-step guide on how to make the project, materials needed and printable templates. The library includes projects such as origami, making day-to-day things like a pencil holder, notebook or folder, as well as creating handmade toys.
- Listening & Reading Comprehension – In this category, kids are asked to choose from different story titles. There are two options for this activity: listen comprehension (wherein someone reads the story) or reading comprehension (wherein kids will read the story themselves). Both choices include visuals for each page read. Most stories have around 10-12 pages.
- “The Detective” Game – This game is an interactive game wherein kids learn the value of ranks and develop patience. When kids play The Detective, they start out as a novice detective and find all villains that have escaped from justice. Every time a child passes one level, he/she is given a printable diploma and a badge that says (novice, cadet, junior, assistant and detective).
- The Classic Tales – This category includes a library of classic tales, such as The Tin Solder, The Ugly Duckling, Little Red Riding Hood, The Little Mermaid, The Three Little Pigs, Goldilocks and the Emperor’s New Clothes. After a kid chooses the story he/she likes, a digital book with photos will begin telling the story.
- Learn to Draw – This category has dozens of images that teach kids how to draw properly using basic shapes. When a photo is clicked, a little blue bird draws guides (in orange ink) and lines/shapes (in black) until the image is drawn completely. Throughout the activity, an easy-to-understand instruction is placed above the drawing.
- Learning Worksheets – Inside this category is three subjects to choose from – language (in pink bubbles), math (in yellow bubbles) and skills (in green bubbles). Each sub-category has dozens of printable worksheets teaching kids how to write, read, perform basic math, and many more. All of the worksheets available on Childtopia.com can be printed out.
- Learn to Draw the Numbers – Similar to the ‘Learn to Draw’ page, this section of Childtopia features the little blue bird who teaches kids how to draw numbers. Kids can choose from numbers 1-9 and 0 on the right side of the page, then the bird draws each number chosen.
- Learn to Draw the Letters – This category features the same interface on ‘Learn to Draw the Numbers,’ but has additional options for kids to learn calligraphy, capital letters and small letters.
The games on Childtopia can be played free, without commitments to buy the CD or subscribe to the website. Parents can also buy CDS at €23 or $31 a pop at the Childtopia Shop. Those in Spain can pay on deliver, while the rest of the world can use PayPal, Visa, Mastercard and American Express. If you don’t wish to pay for a CD, you can pay €12 (or $16) per year to remove all external links and ads, making your child’s experience on the website much more enjoyable. Although kids cannot play free games at full screens, Childtopia is a very useful website for toddlers and young kids to learn practical skills and basic educational subjects that may help them prepare for formal schooling.