Disney's Web treats are sweet

While education is getting excited about the Internet, teachers are more concerned about finding Web pages they can use in class. In these early days of the National Grid for Learning, the answer is they are on the sites of big media organisations such as the BBC - with Disney at the forefront of the commercial sector.

Some people have a cultural problem with Disney - maybe it is too sugar-coated - but there is no question of the quality of its numerous sites. And there is a wealth of material aimed at home learning with the main site billed as "the website for families".

Advisers concerned with literacy for primary schools are already circulating the Web address of Disney's online library for teachers who do not have hang-ups about American spellings. Children can click through the pages of 'Pooh's First Day of School', one of 14 titles featured. The quality of images and layouts is extremely high, making them very attractive for children.

There is also a search facility to allow you to search by title and age groups. A search on 'Pinocchio' produced five titles with prices from $1. 09 to $150. Predictably for such a commercial company, there are little buttons next to the titles so that you are just one mouse-click away from Barnes and Noble, who will sell you the books. These pages are so business-savvy they are an essential visit for business studies students.

The Disney family site is packed with activities and has its own education section and useful advice on computer hardware and software. Together with the kids' section, called Blast, there are hours of activities - telephone bill permitting.





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