Saturday, August 17, 2013

Reading Kingdom: A TOS Crew Review

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Reading Kingdom

From their website:
"The Reading Kingdom is a site for children to learn to read and for adults looking to make sure the children in their lives have the best opportunities in life. It's fun, easy-to-use and best of all, kids can do most of the program on their own with minimal adult supervision. Our online reading program is based on a patented system developed by a world-renowned expert on reading that has helped children to learn to read for over forty years. It's the only system that customizes itself to your child. Thousands of children, parents, and educators testify to the success of the program."

The program is for ages 4-10 years old and teaches up to a third grade reading and writing level.

Cost: Try a  FREE 30 day free trial before you buy or

 $19.99 per month /$199.99 per year for the first child with each child after costing an additional $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year.

The  Bentz Test Laboratory was recently selected to take another look at The Reading Kingdom, online reading program.  My tester was our seven year old, second grader.  He loves getting to have computer time - so, I thought this would be a hit. 

The Reading Kingdom begins with a skills assessment.  Parents are advised not to help their child, so that the program can get an accurate reading of the student's reading and keyboarding skills. My tester has very beginning keyboarding skills so began with a introductory keyboarding level to learn those skills  (I was allowed up to 3 children on my subscription - but, my other potential testers couldn't get past this level...)

I must say, this frustrated him.  As he struggled to locate the correct letter (which he could identify and read easily) on the keyboard, if it took him too long - the program considered it wrong and corrected him.  This was very defeating for him. It may have been teaching valuable keyboarding skills, but - it moved so slowly that he quickly lost interest.  This became a daily "please do some computer time for mom" type of situation.  This was not what I expected, begging my child to spend some time on the computer!

There are plenty of features to get excited about however.  This program customizes to your child's level, not a "one-size-fits-all.   Progress reports are emailed weekly, so you will know exactly where your student is at. It's a very comprehensive program that works with struggling readers.

If your child already has the keyboarding skills needed - I'm sure they will have a much different experience than my tester did.

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Here's some screen shots to give you an idea of the exercises they are doing during the Keyboarding portion - type the highlighted letter.  Over and over...

Moving on to the reading exercises:

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Putting the letters in order to spell the word.

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And then, reading sentences and filling in the missing words.

I strongly encourage you to read what some of the other TOS Crew thought - I feel like this program has great appeal and potential,  it just wasn't a good fit for us.

Click to read more reviews from the Schoolhouse Review Crew


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