One of the benefits of homeschooling, in my opinion, is having access to a variety of some really amazing online learning tools that compliment my children’s learning plan. While some of them are only accessible to us because we are part of the Learn@home program, (aka – not available to the general public), there are a few sites that were recommended to me that anyone can access.
We have tried out a great many of these (general public) online learning sites over the last year of homeschooling, and I have compiled a list of my favorite ones to use, or more importantly my children’s favorite ones, and am passing this information on to you! Even if your children are in the public or private school system, it never hurts to give them a little extra learning once in a while
Starfall – www.starfall.com
Curriculum: teaches children how to read (among a few other things)
Recommended age: preschool – grade 2
Cost: Home membership is *free or $35.00 per year for a full membership
*Starfall advertises that it is a free program, however in order to use every feature of their website you must have a membership. While there have definitely been times when we have run across certain parts of the site that the kids wanted to enter but couldn’t because we don’t have the full membership, for the most part they get what they need without having one. However if we didn’t already subscribe to so many other great sites, it would be a no brainer for me to get the full membership – it truly is a great program to use when trying to teach your children how to read!
Another great site for helping your child learn to read is:
Jan Brett Dolch Word List - www.janbrett.com
Curriculum: sight words (Dolch words)
Recommended age: anyone who is learning the English language
In case you don’t know, Dolch words (or otherwise known as sight words) are the 220 most frequently found words in the English language. Most of these words cannot be sounded out because they do not follow any phonics rules, so they have to be memorized instead.
This particular online learning site lists all 220 Dolch words in 11 easy to follow lists (that are also fun and decorative). Each list can be printed off for your child’s use. List #1 starts off with the easiest Dolch words, while list #11 has the hardest ones to remember.
And yet another great resource for learning those Dolch word’s is:
Dolch Sight Words Flash Cards www.learningbook.net/Dolchflash.html
A free list of Dolch words that you are able to print off into flash cards. This site lists the words from easy to most difficult using the grade of your child as a reference for each list (pre-primer up to grade 3)
IXL Math ca.ixl.com – (Canadian version)
Curriculum: Online math practice and lessons
Recommended age: Preschool – grade 10
Cost: Membership is *$9.95 monthly or $79.00 yearly
*If you aren’t willing to pay for the membership you area able to complete up to 20 questions per day for free
You may have already seen this online learning website advertised on other sites you frequent (they are a regular contributor on Facebook). Because of that I was a little surprised when my daughter’s program teacher recommended it to us, however I am really glad he did for it has become a huge hit around here…even for my three-year old!
I like this particular Math site because it is easy for the kids to follow (one their own), and it keeps track of their progress; the kids like it because it gives them instant feedback, and they receive rewards for completing a session. It is also great that there is a Canadian version (for the metric system), but it is even better that there is a section for the student(s) to follow along with their Provincial Curriculum as well!
ABCmouse.com – Early Learning Academy www.abcmouse.com
Curriculum: Overall learning (Reading, Math, Science, Art & Colors, and Music)
Recommended age: Preschool – Kindergarten
Cost: Membership is $7.95 per month or $79.00 per year
*You can get a free trial for 30 days to try it out
My children REALLY like this one. To be honest, the fact that my daughter, who is in grade one, still likes this site kind of irks me. I kind of wish she didn’t. As the site is geared towards 3 – 5 year olds, the curriculum is just not challenging enough for her (although she disagrees) and I feel it is a waste of allowable screen time – especially when there are so many other more age appropriate sites that I would prefer her to be on. However, I keep it around because I feel it is a fabulous tool for my three-year old. It really is a great online learning resource for preschoolers!
Well there you have it…my top recommendations to supplement your child’s learning. If you know of any other great educational websites please let me know!