Thursday, March 01, 2012
TOS Review: Reading Eggs!
Reading Eggs is an online program where kids learn to read!
There are no downloads, no software purchasing to do, just a simple, online-only subscription-based program.
We have tried several different programs this year to facilitate the learning to read process. This one was hands-down the girls' favorite! They never once called it "school", complained or whined when I asked them to sit down for Reading Eggs time, and instead asked to "play" their Reading Eggs "Game" often.
When one girl was on Reading Eggs, the other was invariably sitting next to her, watching. They both enjoyed it immensely!
First order of business: take the reading test to be placed at the right level. I was amazed that Emmy tested at a much higher level than I expected. She is still a little bit behind grade/age level, but is making great progress now towards the end of the year!
After both girls took their placement tests, they began work on their lessons. I don't even know where to begin! The website is such an easy layout, so intuitive, that after a session or two with each child, I needed to supervise their use of the program very, very little. The lessons are set up as a path to follow from one end to the other, with a big arrow pointing to where the student needs to click next. On the left side of the screen is an easy-to-read option spot where they can leave their lesson and go to their other choices, such as Playroom, Story Factory, Arcade, My House, etc. More options become available as the child progresses through the lessons.
The Playroom really looked like a playroom that any child would love to dive into at the end of a lesson time! You could choose any number of simple activities from blocks to puzzles, painting to book reading. Emmy's favorite was the painting. Every time.
Golden Eggs are earned by completing lessons which can then be used to choose games to play in the arcade. The arcade was actually explored very little as the girls found the lessons to be fun and entertaining on their own!
The parent interface is also very easy to use, easy to navigate. At the dashboard, you can choose each child from a drop-down menu to see their progress reports, what they've recently completed, and their estimated reading-age, phonics skills, and sight words. You can also go to the Free Activity Sheet page and download activity pages to go with each lesson!
Reading Eggs is for children just learning to read, ages 4-7. There are 100 lessons and they are currently working on more lessons to extend this part of the learning process for older kids who still struggle with the basics. If you have a child who reads the basics well but might need a little extra help with reading comprehension, Reading Eggs also offers Reading Eggspress! Geared toward the 7-13 year old crowd, this interactive learning tool teaches lifelong reading skills.
Occasionally Elayna (age 4) would become confused and need help with her lesson. At those times, I would come to the computer to help her and look for an easy button that would repeat the instructions so I could hear it and quickly move on. There isn't one. At first I found that frustrating for myself as a johnny-come-lately helper, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized it was teaching my children the importance of listening carefully to instructions the first time. And not once were we stumped for more than a minute or two. With a little bit of trial and error, deductive reasoning, and patience, Elayna found she really could figure out what needed to be done!
We found this to be just the right amount of interaction, animation, and graphics/sound for our family. There is not constant movement and music, which is important for us because I have one child who is easily overwhelmed when there's too much going on!
I see this as a great tool for any classroom, homeschool or not!
Pricing for Reading Eggs/Eggspress subscriptions are:
$9.95/month per student or..
$49.95 for 6 months (add a second child for an additional $24.95 - a 50% discount!)
$75.00 for 12 months (add a second child for $37.50!)
Sign up for your Free Trial here! No credit card is required, and you can sign up for up to 3 children!
As with all of my TOS Crew reviews, this product was provided to me for use in my own homeschool classroom free of charge in exchange for an honest review of the product and how we used it personally. I was provided access to the Reading Eggs program for one child for three months.
To read more reviews about this product by other TOS Crew members, go here!