Surf Safe, Surf Smart


This special section was developed by the Youth Services staff to help kids of all ages find their way around the Internet. Parents, teachers, and other grown-ups may find these links useful, too.

We've even created a special page with Internet search tips and examples to help you find all the web stuff you're looking for!  For other resources and links, check out Homework Help and Homeschool Resources.

Skokie Public Library and the Youth Services staff remind everyone that a safe surf is a smart surf.

Please note:  The Youth Services staff makes every effort to select websites that are suitable for children; however, the Library has no control over individual website content, sponsors, or advertisements. We encourage parents to explore and enjoy these websites with their children.

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Internet Use and Safety

Skokie Public Library and the Youth Services staff remind everyone that a safe surf is a smart surf. Check out these websites for some important information about responsible Internet use and general safety guidelines.

Web resourceInternet Safety Information from Skokie Public Library

This page from the Skokie Public Library Youth Services Department provides online safety tips, tools, and web links for students, parents, and educators.

Web resourceChatDanger: How to Keep Safe in Chat Rooms

Get smart about online chatting with this website designed to let kids and parents know about the potential dangers of unmoderated Internet chat rooms. Content is based on the real-life story of a teen girl and her family.

Web resourceJo Cool or Jo Fool for Kids

This online game teaches kids how to be savvy about websites. Topics  include how to judge websites for their content, the basics of responsible Internet use, personal privacy, online marketing, and ethics. The site also includes a Teacher's section and downloadable Teacher's Guide.
Note: Teacher's Guide requires Adobe Reader

Web resourceThe Online Safety Quiz

An interactive quiz that teaches the basics of Internet safety.

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Search Tips and Tools

These websites will teach you about different types of search tools and how to use them to find information on the World Wide Web.

Web resourceFour Nets for Better Searching

"Start Narrow. Use Exact Phrases. Trim the URL. Seek Similar Pages." This website describes how these four tips for searching the Internet will guide you toward helpful websites and information.

Web resourceWelcome to the Web: Searching the Net

Designed especially for children, this hands-on lesson is a fun way to learn how to track down information on the Web using search engines. To learn what to do with the information you find, check out Welcome to the Web: Researching on the Net for tips about copying, pasting, and printing Web pages.

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Search Indexes

A search index is a collection of websites that have been reviewed and selected by grown-ups who care about children. This is a good place to start if you need to find information about just one part of a very large subject (for example, one of the fifty states or one of the American presidents).  The following search indexes have been selected by the Youth Services staff for their usefulness and kid-friendly content.

Web resourceAwesome Library

An organized collection of 19,000 Web resources that have been recommended by students, teachers, parents, and librarians. All Awesome Library resources meet the following standards: child-safe content; useful for teachers, students, parents, and librarians; actual documents, projects, pictures, and discussion groups; timely information; pages load quickly; and only a small percentage of expired links.

Web resourceDMOZ Open Directory Project: Kids and Teens

An Internet directory created especially for children and teenagers. Includes sites designed specifically for children and/or teens as well as sites designed for general audiences. Does not include sites that are designed primarily to sell merchandise, sites that use profanity or obscenity, or sites that contain sexually explicit content.

Web resourceFact Monster

Reference materials, fun facts, features, and individual homework help for kids. Includes access to the full range of Information Please almanacs, as well as encyclopedia, dictionary, and atlas resources. Includes a free Homework Center where kids can find direction on common homework topics and submit questions to homework helpers.

Web resourceIpl2 for Kids

A collection of Internet resources and sites selected especially for children ages 4 to 11, parents, teachers and others interested in the literature and information directed to and about children. Includes sections devoted to reference, computers/internet, reading, math, sports and recreation, art and music, science, the country and the world. Also includes a teacher/parent section.

Web resourceKidsClick!

A search index designed to help students find age-appropriate websites. KidsClick! is not an Internet filter, but rather a way to guide children to “good” sites rather than blocking them from “bad” sites.

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Search Engines

A search engine is a tool to help you sort through the millions of pages on the World Wide Web. When you type a search request, the search engine provides a list of websites that match your request and links to take you to those sites. The websites you find on a search engine are not reviewed or selected by humans; they are selected by a computer program and a robot.  The following search engines have been selected by the Youth Services staff for their usefulness and kid-friendly content.

Web resourceChatterbee's Invisible World Wide Web

The "Invisible Web" is used to describe thousands of online databases that don't usually come up when you search the Web with common search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Ask Jeeves. This website provides links to several Invisible Web search engines, some of them specialized to search only certain subjects (such as animals or science).

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Meta-Search Tools

A meta-search tool is a search engine that searches other search tools (try saying that ten times fast!). When you type a search request, the meta-search tool will provide a list of results from several search engines and indexes.  The following meta-search tools have been selected by the Youth Services staff for their usefulness and kid-friendly content.

Web resourceAsk Kids

A "natural language" search tool just for kids. Ask a question in plain English and "Jeeves" will help you find a website that has the answer. Includes educational resources to help with homework and school projects. Also includes fun games and activities.

Web resourceDogpile

A meta-search tool powered by "Arfie" the cyber dog.  Arfie fetches search results from several search engines at the same time, returning many results from across the Internet.

Web resourceKid's Search Tools

A one-page search tool to help kids search Internet dictionaries, encyclopedias, and websites. Includes a search tool for teachers, too.

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