10 great websites for toddlers
Worried your tot is too young to jump into the techno age? Struggling to keep your toddler entertained without switching the TV on?
Check out our selection of the best toddler websites which will keep them busy, help them learn their way around a computer and educated them all at the same time!
Take a look at our top 10 favourite websites…
Great for learning French
Barney, the Wiggles and other popular characters come alive on this playful site . But the best thing of all is the interactive French element, which encourages your toddler to learn a new language through easy-to-remember songs.
TOT TESTED “Ruby was very quick to recite the lyrics of the songs and she’s already learnt the French words for ice cream and apple,” says Amy, 31, from Surrey, mum to Ruby, 2.
Great for In The Night Garden fanatics
2. In the Night Garden/ CBeebies
In The Night Garden is the overwhelming favourite among the selection on offer on the CBeebies site, with games and songs as well as colouring and make-it activities. If you have a webcam, you’ll be able to cherish your younger ones’ reactions to appearing alongside Iggle Piggle and co.
TOT TESTED “Dora pressed her nose against the screen when she saw herself on the Ninky Nonk,” says Emily, 38, from Cornwall, mum to Dora, 20 months. “I’m glad she can enjoy the site without getting overexcited.”
Great for tiny ones
For younger children who just like pressing buttons, Kneebouncers offers some simple, fun games to play. It gets them accustomed to using a keyboard and helps them develop an understanding of cause and effect.
TOT TESTED “Jem loves the music section,” says Victoria, 34, from Cornwall, mum to Jem, 14 months. “After a few times, he seemed to take a real interest in the melody and now likes to bop along to the rhythm.”
Great for learning to count
Channel 4 puppets The Hoobs bring to life a wide range of learning games and activities. Everything from counting and rhyming to grouping things and spotting the difference is covered on the site.
TOT TESTED “Nyah always loved The Hoobs on the television” says Marilyn, from London, mum to Nyah, 5, and Fox, 2. “And unlike some other sites, all the games here actually teach toddlers something.”
Great for encouraging a love of reading
This website, which promotes the series of classic Miffy rabbit books, provides a great selection of simple games and colouring activities, as well as music, audio books and colourful animation clips.
TOT TESTED “Lola is actually more interested in reading as a result of this site,” enthuses Lynda, from Norwich, mum to Ariadne, 5, and Lola, 2. “She’s becoming a big fan of the Miffy books just like her older sister.”
Great for playing games
Children can get to know their favourite Mr Men even better on this fun site through interactive games and entertaining videos. Play paddle tennis with Mr Bounce, mend Mr Lazy’s snack machine and help Mr Messy make a mess. Every game uses a different skill, whether it’s hand-eye coordination or artistic talent.
TOT TESTED “Peter loves the music on this site and sings along,” says Annie, 31, mum to Peter, 3, and Emily, 6 months. His favourite game is flying Mr Nervous in his spaceship.”
Great for mouse skills
7. Poisson Rouge
The first time you visit this website with your toddler, you’ll be amazed. With no instructions, its child-friendly design encourages simple, intuitive navigation around the 200+ games, activities and animations on the site. Each toy you click on will lead you to something different.
TOT TESTED “My two love this site,” says Sarah, 29, from Bristol, mum to 2½-year-old twins Emily and Maisie. “It has everything from number games and the alphabet in English, French and Spanish, to dancing bees and a musical board game. Their favourite bit is the aquarium – the fi shy games help their mouse skills and they love clicking on the red anemones to make the fish pop out!
Great for unleashing artistic talent
8. Paint with Jackson
When your toddler fancies painting, but you don’t fancy clearing up the inevitable mess, then this is the site to turn to. It lets her use the mouse as an explosive paintbrush to, well, paint like Jackson Pollock. Fantastic fun!
“Lotte laughs and laughs whenever she has a go on this site,” says Nicola, 36, from Herts, mum to Lotte,18 months. “She’s learnt that each time she clicks the mouse, the paint changes colour, and that seems to really fascinate her!”
Great for wild imaginations
Welcome to a weird and wonderful virtual zoo where you can invent new and freaky creatures from the heads, bodies and feet of various animals at the click of your mouse. Strange, silly and unusual – but if your child wants to see what a zebra crossed with a cheetah and a dog would look like, this is the place to go.
TOT TESTED “My boys have had great fun with this website, and it’s perfect for when they’re in a daft mood,” says Anna, 33, from Kent, mum to Finley, 4, and Jamie, 2. “The only downside is that it has lots of ads and navigation is fi ddly, so they need quite a bit of help.”
Great for animal recognition
Did you know that Italian pigs go “ruff-ruff” rather than “oink oink” and fi re engines in Denmark go “ba-boo, ba-boo”? This website brings together a collection of onomatopoeic sound recordings of pre-schoolers from around the world making the sounds of different animals and vehicles.
TOT TESTED “Sam loves the lion and pig noises best,” says Emma, 36, from Cheshire, mum to Sam, 3, and Annabel, 10 months. “The site helps him learn to recognise different animals and it’s a good starting point for talking about different languages and cultures, too.”