Exploring as many careers for kids as possible can help you narrow down which field you'd like to work in one day. Combine your strengths and interests with great books, online resources, and career quizzes to start your journey on a career path.
Virginia Career VIEW
VIEW stands for "Vital Information for Education and Work" in this website made for kids in the state of Virginia. Although it is made in Virginia, the content is not state specific and can be used with kids all over the country.
Virginia Career VIEW is one of the few sites that really looks like it was made for younger kids.
- Separate sections for Grades K-5, Grades 6-8, Parents, and Professionals
- More than 10 free, printable career books
- "Unusual Occupations" section list more modern and less common jobs
- Dozens of free online games related to career research for kids
- Search careers by cluster, interests, or subjects
- Career Town virtual village full of games related to different places kids could see in their town
This website is pretty comprehensive and really plays to the interests and skill level of elementary kids. However, most of the content is based on typical careers kids might think they want for their future and doesn't go in-depth about less common careers.
Bureau of Labor Statistics K-12
The United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has a site dedicated to helping kids learn about careers and the economy called K-12. It encourages kids to find careers that are fun and interesting by exploring their favorite things.
This part of the BLS website is made just for younger kids with great features like:
- Free career posters and lessons
- Online games such as Occupations Word Search and Crossword Puzzle
- Career Exploration page listing jobs based on general area of interest
- Each job links to a comprehensive description
- Fun videos about different careers
- Featured occupation description
- Occupational fun facts
While this site provides lots of resources for kids and teachers, it isn't as visually exciting as most kids would like. Bright colors are used, but there aren't many graphics or sound effects which could feel boring to elementary students.
Knowitall is a website built for kids in grades Pre-K through 12 by South Carolina ETV to provide digital educational content. Their Career Education section features 20 career clusters kids can explore.
There is a lot of content on Knowitall including more than 4,000 videos, 1,700 photos, and nearly 350 documents.
- Information broken down by career cluster then specific field of study
- Videos, audio files, documents, photos and interactives for each cluster
- Sort feature where you can filter results by type
- KidsWork! interactive virtual community for specific career exploration
The KidsWork! interactive series features lots of fun ways to explore careers, but it only covers jobs at hospitals, television stations, and theaters. Also, the amount of content presented for each career cluster could be overwhelming for younger kids.
What Do They Do?
While the site doesn't have many special features, it provides a simple backdrop for kids to learn about careers.
- Alphabetical listing of over 50 jobs
- Simple design isn't distracting or difficult for young users
- Career descriptions include fun and informative images
There are no frills on this website and that means no games, no fun sound effects, and no extension activities. If you're looking for basic job descriptions of common jobs, the site is great. If you want a more interactive and fun experience, you won't find that here.
You won't find games or other activities on this website, but you'll find lots of detailed information about tons of occupations.
- Short videos depicting many of the careers
- Alphabetical listing of jobs
- Links to additional real-time salary information
Career Kids doesn't look like a super fun place to explore, so kids might find it boring to read through the extensive career descriptions. Most of these informational pages are quite long and not necessarily written with a younger child audience in mind.
MyPlan is a comprehensive website that allows people of any age to learn about careers, colleges, and college majors.
While it's not specified as a children's website, there are a few features perfect for the career exploring child.
- Video library with nearly 500 visual representations of different careers
- Top Ten lists showing things like jobs with highest worker satisfaction
- Options to search a specific career or browse careers
- Salary calculator show how much workers make in specific occupations and regions of the U.S.
Kids who are serious about searching careers or easily distracted by bells and whistles will like this site, but it won't feel exciting or fun for many others. Since it's made for people of all ages, you won't find any fun graphics or games and most of the assessments cost money.
Exploring Specific Career Fields
If you already know which field you want to do career research in, look for websites with that specific focus.
- Engineer Girl is one of many career sites for kids geared towards the advancement of girls in the field of engineering. Fun features include video interviews of female engineers and the "Ask and Engineer" section.
- Learn all about environmentally friendly "green careers" with NASA Climate Kids. Click on each career to learn all about it from a real life professional in the field.
- If science is your thing, Science Kids has a great list of careers to explore in the different kinds of sciences.
- The Art Career Project showcases descriptions of careers from nearly 15 different art related fields.
Choosing a Career
No one expects a young child to choose a career at an early age, but learning about occupation options helps inspire them to go after their dreams as they grow. By visiting career sites for kids children get overviews and requirements for various professions and learn what they will need to pursue their ideal job.