Parent/Family Resources and Instructional Materials

As we navigate these times together, we offer the following resources for you to review and consider.  Know that NYS PTA is always here to help our children, families, educators, and communities.  If you have specific questions or need specific assistance, please feel free to reach out to us at pta.office@nyspta.org.

National PTA COVID-19 Page


Supporting Children


How to Talk to Your Kids About Coronavirus (PBS)

Talking to Children About COVID-19: A Parent Resource (Natl Assn of School Psychologists)

Supporting Children’s Emotional Well-being during the COVID-19 Pandemic (Child Trend)

How to Talk to Your Child About COVID-19 (Kids Health)

Multilingual Resources for Schools on COVID-19

Happy and Healthy at Home: 10 Student Mental Health Resources (Gaggle)


Meals For Families


Lorey A. Zaman, NYS PTA President

Dear families and community members. NYS PTA is here to help you through these times. If you, your family, or a neighbor is facing food insecurity or a shortage of meals, please email us at meals@nyspta.org.

We also offer some information on where your family might find help during these times.

1. If you have school-aged children, please check with your local school district.

2. Regional Food Bank information can be found here: http://tiny.cc/udfpnz

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) – As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact families , you may be eligible for SNAP – a program that can help you and your family buy food.  SNAP provides monthly benefits on an EBT card to spend at local grocery stores. If you are eligible for SNAP, you can also continue to receive meals from your local school. Visit www.MyBenefits.ny.gov to apply for SNAP online.

Need Help Applying? Hunger Solutions New York manages the Nutrition Outreach and Education Program (NOEP) to help families apply for SNAP.  You can call or email a local NOEP Coordinator, who can tell you if you may be eligible for SNAP, answer your questions, and help you complete and submit your application. It is free and confidential. Search for your local NOEP Coordinator by County or view this list.   

For those who may not qualify for SNAP, you can still apply for free or reduced price school meals at any point during the school year.

Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) – If you are pregnant or have a child younger than 5 years old, WIC can help provide nutritious foods to keep your family healthy. Contact your local WIC agency  or visit WIChelpNY.org to learn if you may be eligible.


Fidelis Care – Do you or does your family need health insurance? Visit fideliscare.org to learn about quality, affordable coverage or call 1-888-FIDELIS (1-888-343-3547); TTY: 711.


Free Instructional and Support Materials and Offers


Go Guardian – @goguardian is implementing added support and offering FREE access to GoGuardian Teacher for impacted schools. Also from GoGuardian, see Homeschooling for Working Parents: How to Handle At-Home Education and What Is a Kid-Safe Browser?

Crayola – Watch this At-Home Learning webinar Creative Ideas for Parents and Educators and see this Crayola free resource library. Also, Crayola has launched an Art and Social Emotional Learning Webinar Series, Crayola Create-to-Learn Family Project Kits, and Weekly At-Home Learning Activities including a colorful new at-home learning activity every Monday on Crayola’s Creative Learning Platform.

Smart Science –  Smart Science® Education is offering free 90 days access to all 300 Smart Science® Labs from grades 3-12 (30+ per grade level). Smart Science® Labs are virtual science labs that closely simulate a hands on laboratory experience.  Fill out this form to get FREE Smart Science® Labs.

TechXtend – Don’t let distance learning stop your school’s character education program. TechXtend and the NYSPTA are offering SiLAS’s Free SEL Animations! Counselors, principals and teachers, what a great way to start “morning meetings” and continue promoting positive social interactions. Go HERE for more information about this FREE program!

myON myOn has offered free access to myON digital reading resources for students and families during the current COVID-19 school closures.  Go to www.myon.com and click the login button at the top of the screen. Then, enter school name:  “New York Reads” (begin typing and click on the school from the drop-down menu), then Username: “read” and the Password: “books”

Read to Them – Read to Them, a NYS PTA Literacy Partner, has created #OneBookConnects, which allows families to bond and schools to build community through a shared book.  #OneBookConnects delivers an event similar to our One School, One Book program, but with a shift from events taking place in a school setting to readings on line and activities at home.

Smile Therapy – With all the negativity out in the world, Smile Therapy brings the positive to you by sending you inspirational and motivational messages. All NYS PTA members can have access to Smile Therapy for 30 days for free.

Amira Learning – We’d love to help keep your students on-track, engaged, and learning safely. Amira Practice Online is now available for teachers and students until July 1 at no charge. Learn more. Also, see HERE for online resources.

PBS Kids

Remote Learning Tips for Parents – In light of school closures, @natonlinesafety has produced a series of free guides to provide staff/parents/pupils with tips on how to learn remotely, safely.

Free Virtual Concerts (per NPR)

How to Connect Home Literacy Practices to School Literacy Practices (per RIF)

Learning Heroes Roadmap for Learning at Home

40 Old-Fashion Skills that Kids Needs to Know Today

National Geographic Kids

ConcernCenter is offering their K12 platform for free to all K12 schools through December 2020. This platform links pre-populated concerns to resources, “Will students be returning to school this year?” and receive a list of support resources (websites, images, people to contact) and information that has been determined. Email info@concerncenter.com for more information.

Free Online Activities and Events from Common Sense Media

Arts Lessons and Activities from Kennedy Center

Virtual Field Trips from Common Sense Media

NASA at home

Cooking with Kids from Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

Amplify K-5 and 6-8 Free Resources in science and reading

Back to NYS PTA COVID-19 Page