Wikipedia for Schools — SOS Schools

Wikipedia for Schools

Child on a computer, friends in the backgroundWikipedia for Schools is a checked selection of articles from Wikipedia, sorted by curriculum topics and designed as a resource for school children around the world. Created by SOS Children and supported by the Wikimedia Foundation, it gives those without internet access free Wikipedia content. It can be downloaded or used online, or obtained from SOS Children in the form of a disk.

Wikipedia for Schools is aimed at children aged 8-17 years old. It is most suitable for those who follow the UK national curriculum and similar programmes elsewhere in the world. Although designed partly with developing countries in mind, the project has proved popular in the developed world because of child protection issues related to full Wikipedia access. It can now be found on the intranets of many schools in first-world countries. The online edition of Wikipedia for Schools currently receives five thousand visits a day.

How do we keep Wikipedia for Schools up-to-date?

Review and update takes place regularly to ensure that content is constantly kept in line with the high-quality standards expected of a working educational resource. From the outset, the project has been edited on a principle of selection (or deletion), not alteration. The wider Wikipedia community have been helpful in creating specific content for curriculum needs (for example portal pages on periods of history coinciding with curriculum topics). We have also added curriculum-based categorization. While changing nothing, we remove content we think is unsuitable for children.

2013 edition

The new 2013 edition of Wikipedia for Schools is now available. You can also download it using a BitTorrent Client. A host of articles have been reviewed to include up-to-date information, new pages added and the whole package given a visual overhaul to improve the look and feel. We are very excited about the new version and we hope you like it as much as we do!

See the 2013 edition of Wikipedia for Schools at http://schools-wikipedia.org/

Accessing Wikipedia for Schools

You can access Wikipedia for Schools in three ways:

  • You can browse the online version at http://schools-wikipedia.org.
  • If your schools' internet connection or internet access policy is limited, you can download a copy to use offline on your school intranet.
  • SOS Children is preparing offline copies of Wikipedia for Schools on USB memory sticks if your school isn't able to get online at all. They'll be ready soon - please get in touch to arrange delivery.

Full Download

The full Wikipedia for Schools 2013 edition is available to download via BitTorrent. You can use our torrent file:


If you don't have a BitTorrent client, we recommend qBittorrent. Use Google to find their web site.

A brief history of Wikipedia for Schools

SOS Children (www.soschildrensvillages.org.uk) began work on the Wikipedia for Schools project in 2005. The principle behind the project was to make available a selection of articles from Wikipedia for free use in SOS schools and other projects across the developing world, where internet access is typically non-existent. The first edition was released onto CD in April 2006, and was distributed freely by SOS Children with help from other groups. SOS Children bore most of the production and distribution costs in its capacity as an education charity. However, some costs were borne by other charities involved in the distribution, such as the Shuttleworth Foundation in South Africa. At the time, Wikipedia was not available in any offline format, making Wikipedia for Schools uniquely positioned to provide a vital learning resource to children across the developing world.

Prior to release, SOS Children contacted the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) in March 2006. We pointed out that the project was strongly aligned with Wikimedia aim of providing "free knowledge for all", and requested permission to use the Wikipedia brand and logo on the first formal release. Because discussions had not concluded, the first release in April 2006 took place without any Wikimedia branding or explicit support from the foundation. It was produced under the name “A world of learning”, but made clear that the content was from drawn from Wikipedia and met in full the licence requirements under which it was taken.

On Nov 11 2006 the Wikimedia Foundation finally gave permission for SOS to use the Wikipedia brand and logo on its selection for schools. The package was renamed “Schools Wikipedia” and moved to www.schools-wikipedia.org, where it jointly relaunched with the support of WMF in April 2007. The permission granted was for the project and states "the use of the logo is to be for non-commercial purposes, meaning, the understanding I have of SOSChildren.org is that you are not in the business of producing encyclopedias, but rather this is a project which is intended to put articles in the hands of children". We have continued to enjoy the support of WMF for this project.

In 2006, "A World of Learning" fitted onto a CD-ROM, with 2006 pages of text and 8000 images. The bigger second edition of spring 2007 was released onto a DVD and increased to the size of a 15-volume encyclopaedia, with 14 million words on nearly 5000 topics.

The project was expanded and improved yet again for the most recent edition, released in 2008/9. The contents of this version would span an encyclopaedia of 20 volumes. 34500 pictures, 20 million words, and articles on more than 5500 topics make Wikipedia for Schools a hugely valuable resource for schools in developing countries across the world.

A fourth edition was released in early July 2013, complete with a visual overlook to give Wikipedia for Schools its own unique look and feel. It also contained a broader spread of articles to expand its core content, as well as a greater range of additional material on topics as diverse as popular culture, and the most well-known computer games and mobile apps. Not only would this new version be a better academic resource for in-school learning, it would also more broadly reflect the interests, trends and fashions of school children today.


- La Sacra Bibbia

- Alighieri - La Divina Commedia


Encyclopaedia Britannica 1911 - PDF

Project Gutenberg: DVD-ROM 2007

Standard E-books

Wikipedia for Schools - ENGLISH

Wikipedia for Schools - FRENCH

Wikipedia for Schools - SPANISH

Wikipedia for Schools - PORTUGUESE

Wikipedia HTML - CATALAN