Ask for Kids is one of the search engines for kids which parents will want to bookmark. Providing children and students with reviewed and quality sites is one way to keep kids safe online. Search engines or directories for kids contain sites which have been reviewed by real people, not by clumsy filtering software.
Ask for Kids, formerly known as Ask Jeeves for Kids. is the child site of Ask.com. Both sites have one missing element. You may be asking yourself, “Where’s Jeeves?”
According to the site, after 10 years of helping kids answer “why” and providing help with homework questions, Jeeves has moved on. The mission of the site remains the same, to help students with searches and homework. According to Ask.com, “The need for an ‘at-your-service’ butler wasn’t as important as kids came to the site to do more than just ask questions.
Unfortunately, in their attempt to be cute, Askforkids.com has come up with a number of activities Jeeves could be doing right now including world cruises, monkeying around and exploring space. Cartoon images depict Jeeves doing the above but they also show him enjoying tropical living and growing grapes, with both examples depicting cartoon bottles of alcohol.
Despite this obvious lack of judgment in depicting alcohol use to kids on the “Where’s Jeeves?” page, Ask for Kids is a decent search engine for kids.
There are a number of factors to consider when evaluating a search engine or directory including appropriate content, usefulness, usability, linking, advertising, privacy, communication aspects and the ability to contact the search engine itself.
URL: Ask for Kids
Appropriate Content Sites included in the Askforkids.com search engine have each been selected by an editor. Editors choose only sites written for children and “G-rated” sites. In the selection process editors evaluate sites for depth of their content, quality and for safety.
Usefulness The results for searches can be somewhat limited. Younger children may not find links to government sites useful unless they are sites specifically written for kids. While some of these links may indeed by “G-rated” for content, they may not be useful or even understandable to the younger child.
Usability AskforKids.com has clean interface which prominently features the search field. Results are quick to come up. In addition to the search field, there are browsable subjects including reference tools: Almanac, Dictionary, Thesaurus and World Book; as well as the following subjects: Astronomy, Biography, History, Math and Science.
Linking When choosing a site, the content is displayed on the Askforkids.com page. There are also off-site links and there is no warming that you are being brought off site. Users will have to get accustomed to the layout of the sites, recognizing which links will provide content on the site and which will bring them off site.
Advertising Askforkids.com has a clear advertising policy: they only accept advertising for products for children under the age of 13.
Community Askforkids.com does not contain any chat, messaging, forums or bulletin boards.
Special Features Useful features on the main page include a section of News Resources for students studying current events as well as section on Fun & Games for when homework time is done.
Technology Askforkids.com does not require the use of any additional software downloads. However, there is an option to download an Askforkids.com toolbar.
Contact Askforkids.com may be contacted at
Ask for Kids
555 12th Street, Suite 500
Oakland, CA 94607
Corporate Info: Ask.com is owned by IAC Search & Media, a publicly traded company which owns and operates “information retrieval products through a diverse portfolio of Web sites, portals and downloadable applications.
Ask for Kids can be a useful tool for students.