Discover & explore for grade schoolers: Our favorite virtual activities

This fall, we’ve been sharing some of our favorite virtual activities with our Discover and Explore posts. Have you missed any? Check out this list of great activities to do all year round!

Visit museums virtually

  • The National Museum of Mathematics is offering free classes for kids throughout the pandemic to explore the fun side of math.
  • We are lucky to have many art museums in Chicago! For example, you can explore Ukranian art and immigrant experiences and download coloring sheets at the Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art and explore many activities including sugar painting and weaving at the National Museum of Mexican Art.
  • Chicago’s own Adler Planetarium features Skywatch Weekly, with updated information about what to look for in the night sky, plus experiments to do at-home and virtual exhibits.
  • San Diego Zoo has a website just for kids with videos, activities, and games. Plus live cams!

Learn about yourself & the people around you

  • The Gender Unicorn: This free tool is great for facilitating creative conversations about gender.
  • Every Body Curious: This web series, created and hosted by experts in sexual health education, introduces young people to topics including body image, puberty, and consent.
  • Queer Kid Stuff: This YouTube channel includes videos for all ages about LGBTQ+ identities and social justice.
  • NatGeo Kids: Go on amazing adventures in culture, archaeology, science, nature, and space with your library card. NatGeo Kids offers a complete run of the magazine from 2009 to the present, as well as books, videos, and images.

Get up & go

  • Route art: Another fun way to play with maps and geography is to create route art. Which words or pictures will you create?
  • Yellowstone National Park has virtual tours of Mud Volcano, Mammoth Hot Springs, and more.
  • Audubon for Kids: All about the birds! Experiments, exploring, and DIY projects.
  • Geocaching is a fun way to get outside and use your navigational skills to look for “treasure.” There are millions of spots hidden around the world!


  • Blockly Games: Kids can learn basic Javascript with these games!
  • Tinkercad: An easy-to-use app for 3D design, electronics, and coding for teachers, kids, and designers to design and make anything!
  • The Smithsonian Institutes’ lesson plan on Bomba music focuses on the use of instruments in Bomba 
  • Create and share your podcast from any device. (Need ideas for a podcast? Check out this podcast created by teenagers: Teenager Therapy.)
  • Stencyl: Create amazing games without code.
  • Picture book artist Christian Robinson has wonderful tutorials on his YouTube page that come with discussions around tough emotions and other prompts.
  • Try some math magic tricks on Education World.