Monday, September 8, 2008

Fun Website Find

To Infoplease

I was forwarded an e-mail today that linked to a website called Information Please. The link was to the section that provides historical Year by Year information. You can see World Events, US Events, Economics, Sports, Entertainment, Science and Death information for a given year. As an example, here is the link for 1980. For the Year by Year information, is the address, simply substitute the year you want to check out (or go through the link above and just navigate on the site).

Now, I'm not normally one to do much with forwarding e-mails, but I really liked this site. Rather than forward it to just one or two people, I thought, why not share it with others who could benefit from this website. Right now, I'm not researching anything specific that would benefit from the site, but it is just a great collection of interesting historical information, business, current events, and so much more.

Let me start by stating, this website is run by a reputable organization, Pearson Education. They have been around since 1938, first as a Radio Quiz show and then, in 1947, they started an annual almanac, which they continue to publish. The website was started in 1998. According to the website Pearson is "the world’s largest integrated education company. Pearson’s other primary operations include the Financial Times Group and the Penguin Group."

So, like I was saying, what brought me to the site was a link in an e-mail that encouraged me to see what was going on the year I was born (not 1980, that was just an example), but what kept me there exploring was the wealth of other information on the site.

In addition to the year by year information, they have a section called daily almanac, where you can check out this date in history, today's birthday and get a word of the day. I'm a sucker for word of the day. Today's word is lyceum. When you go to the word of the day, they don't just present a boring definition. Instead, it is presented like a quiz. Today they set up a scenario, utilizing the word and then ask which of the following is the most appropriate CD to take. I am proud to say, I got this one right.

There are links to information about the 2008 Presidential campaign and the Summer Olympics, as well as other current events. Under the Campaign 2008 tab, you can learn about where each person stands on the issues, read speeches and learn about the presidential election, amongst other things.

As a parent, the benefit to children could be great. There are so many unconfirmed sources on the Internet that it is nice to know that there is somewhere to go to get information that is factual. When I was growing up, the big thing was to buy a set of encyclopedias, so you wouldn't have to head to the library. Now, there is the great resource of the Internet, but the potential to stumble upon a site that seems to provide great information that is indeed not complete or is incorrect certainly exists. With the background and long standing history of Information Please, you get a better feeling about the completeness and accuracy of the information provided.

In addition to just being a great learning resource for the children, there is a section called Homework Center, which provides resources on various school subjects including geography, math, science and many more. Also for kids, is a link to a sister site called Fact Monster, which contains kid's reference information, quizzes and games. Just clicking through, it seems like a pretty decent selection of information, facts, etc. and the games are entertaining and educational (some are more entertaining than educational, but still good clean fun).

This is a website that I have already bookmarked and plan to use. Did you check it out? What part do you think you are most inclined to utilize? Let us know by leaving a comment.