Friday, 4 April 2014

K5 online math and reading Review


Online Reading & Math Program for K-5



I was contacted by K5 to do a review on their reading and math computer program.   I agree to give their program a trial with my two children, as I was considering changing math programs to a computer based program for my youngest anyway.   Firedrake is actually in 6th grade but I had her try the assessment portion of the program to see where she fit in.  I was very pleased with her results and  she scored very well over all, showing the most deficit in the area of geometry, which makes sense since that is not heavily emphasized in our current math program.  MarioFan also did well placing exactly where he should be 4th grade, except for 2 areas, geometry and phonics.  We spent the next 6 weeks giving this program a thorough workout.

Over all the program is easily laid out and very simple to use.  The fact that I didn't need to call tech support the entire time I used the program speaks volumes for the ease of use.  Once I set the program up on the kid's computer they were able to log on and complete the day's assignments easily.  The time spent on each assignment varied from 10 mins to 20 mins and that depended on the kids energy level on the day and how they understood the lesson.

I was able to easily access the kids daily progress on the reports.  I could easily see how they scored and what they were learning. 

The graphics of this program are excellent and the speaking voice is very clear.  
If there children needed addition assistance on the days lesson there were help buttons the re explained the lesson.

I sat down several times with the kids to look at the lessons they were doing for the day.  The only concern my oldest had was at times there was too much talking in the program,  and she wanted to skipped over it and go straight into the lesson and there was no way for her to do that.  However, I thought that was a plus because she likes to jump into her assignments and doesn't always thoroughly understand what the directions are.  This forced her to slow down, although it also frustrated her.  Not sure what the middle ground would be.  My son on the other hand did well with the directions and had no issues with the length of the explanations.  Personally I did not think the length of the lesson explanations were long at all.

I thought the reports were very concise and easy to read so I knew exactly where the kids stood.    While Firedrake tested in the 6th grade, she did place low for geometry.   In less than 3-4 weeks she tested out of the geometry/measurement part of the program and went further into the operations.  This program used a slightly different way to reached the answers for fractions and this was a slight source of frustration.  IF you start with this program this should not be a problem.  My daughter found it confusing and since she understand the currant way we are teaching fractions she did not want to learn a different way.  Also my daughters learning style is to do most of her math in her head, this program required each step to be done on the computer, so while she already may know the answer she still had to insert the numbers in the correct locations for each problem before she could type the answer.  This frustrated her a bit.   I sat down with her several times and thought the programs explanation were very clear and in someways easier than our current math program.  My son did much better with this type of program.  It is all about knowing your kids learning styles!
Firedrake tested out of 3 of the reading components but we placed her in the high 5th grade for reading and vocabulary simply to see how she would do.

Daily reports told me exactly how she was doing and what assignment were completed and the grade she received.

This daily log can be kept for your school records.

Progress reports also let me know how much time was spent on each lesson plan

and let me know when she had completed and passed the program levels.

MarioFan loved this program and for the first time in history of "school" would run upstairs to get started on the K5 program first thing in the morning! I often caught him doing an extra lessons, which sometimes put us a bit behind on our other lessons:)  not a bad problem to have!  MarioFan did much better with the math component of this program and the visual aids of this computer program.  It really appealed to him.  It also allowed him to use the computer to complete every step of the math problem which was a great help as I believe he has dysgraphia, which is a huge problem when it comes to math and lining up math numbers.  In the short time we worked on this program I noticed he was beginning to understand multiplication facts so much better and this is something we have been struggling with all year!!!

IN just a few short weeks we saw documented progress for both MarioFan.


In addition to the computer program the site has free worksheets for K through 5 for grammar, reading, cursive and math.  They offered a free 14 day trial and several sample lessons for each grade so you can get a better feel for their services.  There is an free assessment on their page.  They do warn you that the assessment component of this program takes a little longer than the normal lessons do.  My kids had no problems completing the assessment in one sitting.

Overall I really like this program! I am seriously thinking of continuing with this program thru the summer with my son and taking a break from our current math program.   This program motivated my son and he was able to work thru problems that normally cause us great grief in our other math program.

If you would like to check out the program for your children please go to this website:  K5 online 

Disclaimer:
I was given a 6 week trial of this program in exchange for an honest review.  All thoughts and comments are honestly given and are based on how my children felt and managed the program during the trial period.



2 comments:

  1. Interesting! I've never heard of them, but may look into the program for Sola, who is entering kindergarten next year.

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