Hollywood and Disney may be coloring TV and the movies. But thanks to interactive websites with free children’s book and stories, the charm of princely tales and brave knights continues to endure.
For kids, children stories are the window to the outside world. Stories continue to make kids dream of great adventures, heroic princes, and beautiful princesses. And, a bit about ogres and monsters that heroes must battle to keep the world safe.
Try these ten websites with online stories for kids with your children by your side.
Do you act out the stories to your child? Maybe you haven’t been able to yet, but famous actors from The Screen Actors Guild certainly can as it is their bread and butter. Actors (how about Elijah Wood or Chris Pine) read aloud children’s books in their own voice and your children can enjoy them thanks to the free streaming videos.
Storyline Online is an award-winning children’s story site. Like all good websites for children, it is interactive. The free and wonderful initiative is made possible by the participation of SAG.
Kathy Kinney stars as the grandmotherly Mrs. P. She sits on her couch and reads a classic children’s book aloud. Most of the Children between the age groups of 3+ to 6+ with a few for 9 and 11 year olds can enjoy Kathy Kinney’s melodic voice. You can check out the video selections and use the dropdown filters to select the ones you want to watch.
Every story also offers read along options so children can see the words, which is helpful to early readers, and ESL students.
There’s nothing like a good audio story played back for your child before he or she drifts to sleep. Storynory could be your download source as it has a huge bank of free audio stories and poems for children. Choose from fairytales, classics, Bible stories, educational stories, and also quite a few original ones.
The online children’s library has a single purpose mission of providing free access to children’s literature from around the world. The site is well organized and you can explore the free children’s books stocked here by country, doing a simple search, or by using the many other story browsing methods listed.
The site supports quite a few international languages. Look into the Award Winning Books section for some of the best online stories for kids. A free registration allows you to save favorite books, set your preferred language, and also bookmark pages of books you plan to come back to.
5. Read.gov (Library of Congress)
The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library. Thanks to its huge digital collection, you don’t need to head towards any one of its 21 reading rooms to read kids books for free. Go to The Center for the Book site which was set up to promote lifelong literacy.
Thanks to page-turning technology, you can pick from a huge swathe of classic children’s literature. The site encourages readers of all ages to discover the wonderful world of books. Follow it up with author webcasts, writing contests, and extensive book lists.
StoryPlace is the online offshoot of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library in North Carolina. If you cannot go to the library, the website provides a virtual environment for listening to children’s stories and exploring interactive activities and games.
The literacy resources are designed in all their colorful glory for pre-schoolers. The online stories for kids are animated and interactive. Each story has a “theme” and it is supported by take-home activities and a reading list.
7. Oxford Owl
Oxford University Press created this site to support children’s learning through books and stories. It is also meant for parents who want a one-stop resource for children’s books and other reading activities. But first, head to the Library where you will find more than 150 ebooks to support your child’s reading.
There are also free teaching resources, including storytelling videos, eBooks and downloadable worksheets and teaching notes available on the site.
Free Kids Books is a simple site with many free books sorted for children of different ages. Selections range from toddlers to young adults. You can read them online or download the books in PDF format for free for your child to read as many times as you want.
Danielle Bruckert maintains this site on his own when she is not flying a plane. The few sponsored ads shouldn’t bother you.
9. Open Library
Open Library is a part of The Internet Archive. It is just one of the websites that offer classic literature for free. Rummage around in this collection of 22,000+ books and find a few gems for yourself. It is a historical treat to turn the pages and read them too because the many of the scanned copies are from the original editions.
Use your Internet Archive email and password to access Open Library and get to the treasures.
10. Read Print
TIME once rated ReadPrint.com among the top 50 websites. You will find books of all genres here, and there is a considerable collection of free children’s books too. Find all the classics along with short stories and poems. Start your browsing from the search box and it will take you to mentions of children’s stories and book lists for them.
Click on the book you like to know more about and read it online in a clean clutter-free interface. The site is free and does not need a registration.
Start a Reading Habit in Your Kids Today
In this age of pixels, it might be a tall order to tell children about pixies and fairies.
A good imagination flowers with a developed reading habit. The web isn’t a book but it has all the tools you need to encourage a child’s creativity—and reading stories to them could be that first spark. You may also want to check out these online magazines for kids that are worth a read. And for yourself, why not check out some audiobooks that don’t require downloading?