Guiding Children through Information Searches on the Internet

Children's Search Engines, Directories, and Portals

Listed below are search engines, directories, and/or portals, designed just for children:

ALFY - The Web Portal for Kids

  • "ALFY, the largest web portal for kids, was developed so that for the first time ever 3-9 year olds could safely and easily experience everything the cyber world has to offer. ALFY is a fun, accessible, educational center stocked with interactive stories, games, crafts, activities, and much more. Designed with the guidance of an Advisory Board of world-leading psychologists and educators, ALFY is revolutionizing the way kids learn and play online." --ALFY Web site

AOL Search: Home > Kids and Teen > School Time

  • America Online's "School Time" section for kids and teens links to 'safe' sites in categories like "English," "Foreign Language," "Homework," "Internet Directories," "Math," "Music," "Reference Tools," "Science," and "Social Studies."

Ask Jeeves Kids

  • "Ask Jeeves is a unique service where you enter a question, and Ask Jeeves tries to point you to the right web page that provides an answer. At Ask Jeeves For Kids, answers have been vetted for appropriateness. Also, if Ask Jeeves cannot answer a question, it pulls results from various search engines in its metacrawler mode. At Ask Jeeves For Kids, no site that is on SurfWatch's block list will be listed." --Search Engine Watch
  • Ask Jeeves is known for providing 'ask-a-question,' natural language searching.

Awesome Library - K-12 Education Directory

  • "Over 14,000 sites have been classified into a directory, specifically organized for teachers, students and parents. Information can be found by browsing or searching." --Search Engine Watch

Berit's Best Sites for Children

  • Maintained by "child at heart" and librarian Berit Erickson since 1994, this site offers over 1,000 of the web's best child-friendly sites, organized in categories like "Just for Fun," "Creatures Great and Small," and "Serious Stuff."
  • Also offers a search box with accompanying "Find It" button.

CyberSleuth Student Homework Helper

  • This "online search engine and guide for the K-12 student" is the "creation of the hard work of a teacher" and volunteers. --CyberSleuth
  • The goal of CyberSleuth-Kids is "to provide a safe educational online database of links to help the student sift through the maze of information." --CyberSleuth

Enchanted Learning

  • Created and maintained by Jeananda Col and her husband, this is one of the busiest sites on the web--particularly for PreK educators and their students.
  • Offers a search box and browsing categories that include "Animal Printouts," "Biomes," "Explorers," and "Nursery Rhymes Printouts." Several of the categories involve printouts for labelling and quizzes.
  • Also offers various foreign language learning activities.
  • Includes a wide variety of crafts--many holiday-related

Fact Monster: Online Almanac, Dictionary, Encyclopedia, and Homework Help

  • Winner of the Webby Award for Best Kids' Site
  • " (formerly known as was launched in August 2000 by Information Please. Fact Monster and its Homework Center have received national recognition for their unbeatable reference materials, fun facts and features, and individualized homework help."--Fact Monster
  • Includes an atlas, almanac, dictionary, encyclopedia, and categories like "World & News," "People," and "Today in History."

Family Friendly Search

  • "Meta search service that queries major kid-friendly search engines." --Search Engine Watch
  • While this site need to rid its link to the now defunct Saluki Search, it is able to simultaneously search Yahooligans, AOL Kids, and KidClick!.
  • Offers link to MapQuest

Guides to Search Engines For Children

  • Created by librarian Paula Dragutsky, this site offers links to several kids' search engines, but also links to adult-oriented guides about the 'invisible web' and academic search engines.

Internet Detectives

  • "Kids help kids find sites that are fun and that help with homework."--Kidspace at the Internet Public Library
  • "A Middle School Social Studies & Library Media Project" from the Madison Metropolitan School District in Madison, Wisconsin --Internet Detectives

IPL Kidspace

  • "The Internet Public Library is a public service organization and a learning/teaching environment at the University of Michigan School of Information." --Internet Public Library
  • Includes sections such as "Reference" (with links to dictionaries, encyclopedias, almanacs, and organizations), "Computers & Internet" (with links to search engines and guides, safe surfing tips, and online games), and "Fun Stuff" (with links to jokes, riddles, and optical illusions.
  • The "Story Hour" section includes a tale, called "Do Spiders Live on the World Wide Web?". This can be used to teach computer terminology like "mouse," "laptop," and "net" by comparing them to their traditional non-techy namesakes.

Ivy's Search Engine Resources for Kids

  • While the site describes itself as the "online sandbox" of an infant, named Ivy, its section of search engine resources offers links to several kids' search engines, web guides, and includes search boxes for specialized searches for coloring sheets, animal sites, "how stuff works," and "space exloration." --Ivy's Domain

KidGrid(tm) - Safe WebSites Only Kid Safe Internet Links

  • This site contains direct search boxes for Yahooligans! and Ask Jeeves for Kids in addition to browsing categories like
    "Fact - Current Events," "Literature - Stories," "Machines - Transport," and "Weird - Mysterious."
  • There's a link to the "PreSchooler Grid."
  • Also includes links to translate the site into Spanish, French, Dutch, Portuguese, and Italian.

KidsClick!: Web Search for Kids by Librarians

  • "Backed by librarians, KidsClick lists about 5,000 web sites in various categories." -- Search Engine Watch
  • A project of the Ramapo Catskill Library System in Middletown, NY, this site include search lessons and sound and picture searches, in addition to a directory with categories like "Facts & Reference," "Wierd & Mysterious," "Health & Family," and "Machines & Transportation."
  • Includes option to display categories in Dewey Decimal numbers and to search from A-Z.

Kid's Tools for Searching the Internet

  • A 'relative' of KidsClick!, this site connects to other kids' search engines, dictionaries, encyclopeida, and other kid-friendly reference sites.

Knowledge Garden

  • Provided by Bell Canada's Sympatico Portal Division, Knowledge Garden connects users to categories like "Cyber Recess," "Cyber Sprouts," "Eco Search," and "Career Adventure," all of which are represented not only by text but also by meaningful icons.
  • Also offers the "shURLy will find it" link, which takes users to two options: "shURLy Junior (grades 1-3)" and "shURLy (grade 4 and up)". shURLy is represented by a purple octopus.

Linkopedia: Kids

  • Linkopedia's Kids section offers a search box and browsing categories like "Animal Sites, " "Arts and Crafts," "Coloring Books,"Downloads," "Homework Helpers," "Online Storybooks," and "Songs and Nursery Rhymes".
  • Also features a list of miscellaneous links, including those to "Pooh World," "The Joke-O-Rama," and ""

Little-red-schoolhouse library: specialty search engines

  • Created by the Westmark School in Encino, California, this self-described "work in progress" offers a variety of categories of links. There's "Biographies," "Space Exploration," "News," "Quotations," "Weather," "Bill of Rights/Civil Rights," "Medical/Health," "Clip Art," "Virtual Greeting," "Shopping Online," "Holidays," and "Just-4-Kids." And that's just a fraction of the offerings.

Lycos Zone Home Page

  • "Lycos Zone was designed to provide a safe neighborhood on the Web for children 3 to 12 years old and their
    families." --Lycos Zone
  • This portal offers a search box along with browsing sections such as "Games," "Homework," "How Stuff Works," "Comics," "LZ Slide Shows," "Family Zone," and "Teachers."


  • "MaMaMedia is the place for kids to play! There are collections of links, called sandwiches, plus a place to make your own home page and digital signatures."--IPL KidSpace

  • This unique site allows users to limit searches, looking solely in education sites, government sites, military sites, A&E Biographies, and/or a variety of encyclopedias.
  • Also offers "Useful Reference Links" like CIA World Factbook and Library of Congress and includes links to several sites, dealing with "Calculators, Constants and Conversions."

SuperKids SuperSearch

  • In its "Notice to Parents," Superkids SuperSearch notes, "Super-Kids reviews each site before including it in our database." --SuperKids SuperSearch
  • Includes a keyword search box and browsing categories with subjects like "Animals," "Countries," "News & Issues," "Magazines," and "Our World"
  • Also offers links to "Cool Kids' Web Rings" and a "Learn HTML" link, among other clever features like the inclusion of what looks like a ticking, old-fashioned, and accurate analog clock

Surfing for ABC's

  • "Ms. Payton's classes from Loogootee Indiana went looking on the World Wide Web for sites to go along with their ABC's. It's fun to see what kinds of things they found for each letter. If you find some good sites for their page, you can send them to Ms. Payton. Or, you could always make your own list of sites beginning with each letter of the ABC's." --IPL Kidspace


  • "SurfMonkey is a Campbell, California-based Internet technology company offering the first total solution for a safer, friendlier, and more comprehensive Internet experience tailored specifically for children. Founded in 1996, SurfMonkey brought together a team of leading software engineers and computer scientists to make the Internet a fun, safe, and satisfying experience for kids. "--SurfMonkey
  • "SurfMonkey offers its Kids Browser and Safety Service to Internet Service Providers such as EarthLink in the U.S., NTT Communications Corp. in Japan, BTopenworld in the U.K., and is negotiating other partnerships with ISPs and educational content providers around the globe."--SurfMonkey
  • The SurfMonkey mission is: "Offering a total Internet solution with advanced safety controls and child-friendly features that opens up the Internet as an educational and entertainment resource to children and families worldwide." --SurfMonkey
  • SurfMonkey's Parents Onl-Line Library includes links to a variety of sites, dealing with internet safety, parenting, and education. - Family Friendly Search Engine

  • "The purpose of the SURFSAFELY.COM directory is to create a market driven incentive for web developers to voluntarily rate their own content using PICS labels (Platform for Internet Content Selection), and families a single point of reference to find labeled sites allowing them to use PICS filters effectively."--Mark Brasche, Founder and CEO
  •'s motto is "Search without surprises."

TekMom's Search Tools for Students

  • "All-in-one search page for kid search sites and research resources." --Search Engine Watch
  • TekMom's site not only features links to sites like Yahooligans!, Ask Jeeves for Kids, KidsClick!, Education World, The "Why Files," American Memories, and The Amazing Picture Machine, but it also includes direct search boxes to these sites, allowing one to search them directly from the TekMom page.


  • "Yahoo for kids, designed for ages 7 to 12. Sites are hand-picked to be appropriate for children. Also, unlike normal Yahoo, searches will not be forwarded to Yahoo's search engine partner Inktomi if there is no match from within the Yahooligan listings. This prevents possibly objectionable sites from slipping onto the screen. Additionally, adult-oriented banner advertising will not appear within the service. Yahooligans is the oldest major directory for children, launched in March 1996." --Search Engine Watch

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