Here at Telling Tales, many of us have young children, tweens and teens of our own and are familiar with the cries of “I’m bored!”, especially in times like these when social distancing is being practiced.

We’ve rounded up some great resources to beat boredom and keep kids busy (and learning) while they are out of school. All the descriptions for these websites have been copied from the originator (we don’t want to infringe on anyone’s copyright 🙂 )

Don’t forget it’s okay to get outside and enjoy the springtime weather with a walk, bike ride or hike or just play in your backyard or local park (just keep your distance from others and avoid playground equipment). Need some inspiration? Lots of memories of red rover and red light, green light coming back to us after reading this great blog of classic outdoor kids games. Now is the perfect time to introduce your kids to your favourite childhood games.

Here’s our list of boredom busters… let us know in the comments if we missed anything.

Curio – is a subscription-based educational streaming platform targeting educational institutions from primary through to post-secondary levels across Canada. You can now access thousands of programs, documentaries, audio content and archival material from CBC/Radio-Canada on a provisional basis.

Ripley’s Shark Cam – self explanatory J

Hamilton Public Library – online kids books

Burlington Public Library – online activities for kids

Kenneth Oppel – read aloud with Kenneth Oppel, author of The Silverwing Saga, The Airborn Trilogy & Darkwing

Mr. Ben’s Open Door Music – YouTube Channel offers group music classes to kids ages 4mos – 6 years of age

Robert Munsch – books by Robert Munsch, read by Robert Munsch

Helene Boudreau – hosting draw me more: a read-along/draw along activity on her website

Kennedy Centre Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems – author and illustrator Mo Willems will invite kids into his studio at lunchtime to create some of his beloved characters

Ken Lashley – Facebook Group with live drawing by graphic artist Ken Lashley

Gumboot Kids – YouTube Channel featuring episodes from Gumboot Kids

Mr. Chris and the Gassy Bubbles – YouTube Channel

Hamilton Children’s Choir – YouTube Channel

Hamilton Youth Poets – YouTube Channel

Jess Keating – YouTube Channel you’ll find fun extras for readers and educators here, including writing tips, book news, and more

Barbara Reid – YouTube Channel modelling clay tutorials by children’s author and illustrator Barbara Reid based on her books

Storytime from Space – astronauts on various missions in space read popular children’s books while floating about, and the videos are edited and shared with kids way down on Earth.

Scholastic Learn at Home – keep the learning going with these special cross-curricular journeys. Every day includes four separate learning experiences, each built around a thrilling, meaningful story or video.

Ladybird Fancypants – Ladybird Fancypants isn’t your average drag queen. For one, she wears pants and (gasp!) flats. She’s also mastered the art of reading… books that is! The Ladybird Fancypants Show teaches folks of all ages about diversity, caring, and just loving the person you are.

Storyline Online – Storyline Online is available 24 hours a day for children, parents, caregivers and educators worldwide. Each book includes supplemental curriculum developed by a credentialed elementary educator, aiming to strengthen comprehension and verbal and written skills for English-language learners.

National Geographic for Kids – learn all about geography and fascinating animals

Into the Book – go “into the book” to play games that practice reading strategies

Seussville – read, play games, and hang out with Dr. Seuss and his friends

ABC YA – practice math and reading skills all while playing fun games

Fun Brain – play games while practicing math and reading skills

PBS Kids – hang out with your favourite characters all while learning

Star Fall – practice your phonics skills with these read-along stories

Highlights Kids – read, play games, and conduct cool science experiments

Oliver Jeffers – reading his books online daily

Mrs. Pipe’s Pad – children’s counsellor at an elementary school in Milton with a YouTube Channel where she read books to her students and anyone else who wants to join while schools are closed

Think Indigenous – Online Indigenous Education K-8 – Indigenous educators are volunteering their time to help educate students online

CBC – printable spring scavenger hunt

Exploring By The Seat Of Your Pants – YouTube channel brings science, exploration, conservation and adventure live into classrooms through guest speakers and virtual field trips

Berlin Digital Concert Hall – Redeem the voucher code BERLINPHIL by 31 March and receive free access to all concerts and films in the Digital Concert Hall.

Museum Virtual Tours – links to article (with links) 12 Famous Museums Offer Virtual Tours You Can Take on Your Couch

Googles Arts and Culture – explore collections from across the world

Forest of Reading – free online access to resources

YMCA of Greater Toronto – YMCA is hosting daily circle time/story time events and activities on Facebook.

Jeremy Tankard – free, downloadable colouring pages

Paris Museums – a collection of 14 museums in Paris have recently made high-res digital copies of 100,000 artworks freely available to the public

Common Sense Media – blog with link to lots of online resources

Audible – free (while schools are closed) collection of stories, including titles across six different languages, free to stream on your desktop, laptop, phone or tablet.

The Body Coach TV – free YouTube PE workouts for kids

BrainPOP – home learning ideas and activities

Cosmic Kids Yoga – YouTube yoga, relaxation and mindfulness for kids

and of course if you’re looking for great reads, check out our reading list

Also if you are looking for an independent bookstore that delivers, we’ve got that covered too!

Stay safe and enjoy your time together.