Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Brill Kids - Little Reader

Time for another review from The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew. I wasn't paid anything for my honest opinion of this product, much to my poor hubby's dismay!

The Little Reader by Brill Kids
available at http://www.brillkids.com/

This is a novel program. It's goal is to teach babies to read. Yes, you read it right - infants and toddlers mastering reading. They have several videos that are quite impressive - you can view at their website http://www.brillkids.com/teach-reading/vid_kl.php

Your child is able to view their lessons on the computer in a fun and engaging way. The lessons are easy to use, and customizable (you can put Mom's picture with the word "mom"). The lessons are taught using Flash method, Multisensory Method and Intuitive Phonics. Each time you do the lesson - the computer will change the sequence, always keeping it new. New words and even foreign languages can be easily added to expand the scope of the program.

So, I checked it out... I brought over our 1 1/2 year old and our 3 year old. They both enjoyed seeing the pictures (I'm a little un-sure of them actually learning to read the words...) But, they sat happily through several lessons. The goal is to do 2 lessons per day. The lessons are short, and all you have to do is to push play. Unfortunately, after several days of lessons, the novelty wore off - and our mouse was too much of a distraction... The program does offer "locking" options to turn off some of the "distractions" available at the computer. And, they also have flashcards to use the progam in a "more comfortable" area, i.e. the sofa.

I know plenty of people who swear this method is effective, and in all fairness - I'm sure it can be, if you have the time and discipline to complete the lessons faithfully. My sister-in-law has had alot of success with a similar approach and her 1 year old. But, my 1 1/2 year old is having much more fun taking tupperware out of the cabinet and eating crayons. But, please know - this is NOT DUE TO THIS PROGRAM'S EFFECTIVENESS.... it is due to my personal lack of discipline! Brill Kids is so confident of their success that they offer a guarantee that your child will be able to recognize words after completeing the 12 month system. Additionally, they even offer a free trial - so, try it out for yourself.
The Brill Kids website had a variety of useful information about teaching early reading, and several free downloadable booklets to help you. Also, there are free flashcards you can print for infant visual stimulation, children's ebooks, and activity sheets. Fascinating research. If you like this approach, they also offer Little Math programs as well.

The Little Reader program sells for $149 for the Basic and a Deluxe version is available for $399.

What's included the Basic system?

Little Reader software installation disc
2 Content discs with 12-month, ready-made curriculum
Lifetime usage of the learning system
2 BrillKids Presentation Binders
40 Customizable Flap Cards
20 Customizable Flash Cards
160 sheets of word and picture prints:
Content Printouts for 8 core categories
5 Little Reader Storybooks
2 Weekly Lesson Planners, one for each semester
10 Sheets of Sticker Labels for playing the labeling game
"Everything you need to know about teaching your baby to Read" booklet
Teaching with Little Reader" booklet
BrillKids Loyalty Points

See what my other reviewers thought of it at www.homeschoolblogger.com/reviewcrew

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