Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Fall 2014 Website
Ages: 8 - 18 yrs.

Five years ago, Parents' Choice acknowledged an upstart and developing educational website with our Gold Award for creating a free, video-driven, educationally smart "virtual fieldtrip" to a handful of amazing locations around the world. "A cross between the Discovery Channel and the Travel Channel," we called it, and a must-see online destination for students from the upper elementary grades through middle school and high school.

Two years later, in 2011, earned our highest accolades once again, that time for extending its admirable mission to bring the world into the classroom and into homes by offering free multimedia content that improves students' global awareness and cross-cultural understanding.

So, it's 2014 and nearly 5 million students have taken's high-quality tours visiting of other lands and people online. The site has multiplied its virtual travel opportunities, offering more than 13 global locations to visit, with several more coming this summer. Now, with's young tour guides leading the way, your child can tour online to locations from Australia and Azerbaijan to South Africa and Thailand.

More than 10 hours of free, globally-focused, culturally-themed videos are available hassle-free, no sign-ons, no giving up personal info. Just go to the site and explore. Talk about refreshing!

Each destination offers numerous topics presented in lively, intelligent, crisp, impressively professional video clips that range typically from 2-6 minutes. The Thailand videos, for instance, includes clips about "Buddha, Monks and Thai Temples" and The 2004 Tsunami" to "The Silk Road" and "The Catch of the Day." Go to the St. Kitts & Nevis section to learn about Caribbean cuisine, or for some traditional customs and dance try Mauritius. Ecotourism? Belize! The Caspian Sea? Azerbaijan!

Designed by a non-profit organization whose mission is to foster "the next generation of global citizens," ProjectExplorer covers everything from history and geography to food and music. But what's really impressive is that after a fairly slow start (it lives from grants and donations), Project Explorer is bigger and better than ever. And that's more than enough reason to recommend it to anyone who understands that global and local are no longer than far apart.

Don Oldenburg   ©2014 Parents' Choice
A former feature writer and consumer columnist at The Washington Post for 22 years, Don Oldenburg is the Director of Publications and Editor of the National Italian American Foundation, in Washington, D.C. He regularly reviews books for USA Today and is the coauthor of "The Washington DC-Baltimore Dog Lovers Companion" (Avalon Travel). The proud father of three sons, he lives with his journalist-author wife, Ann Oldenburg, in McLean, VA.

Share This