Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Review: Reading Kingdom

Reading Kingdom
Reading Kingdom

I recently had the opportunity to review Reading Kingdom with my six-year-old Kindergarten daughter, Abigail. If you have a child who is learning to read, reading but not solidly, struggling to read, or a reader who is accelerated that can use some reinforcements of concepts, this review is one you will want to read.

What AGE is this program for?
Reading Kingdom is for children ages 4-10 years old who are not yet reading and don't know their letters to those who have already started to learn. I actually have four children in this age range, however, it was only Abigail that this program really was a match for. 

Here's why:
  • I opted to not start this with my four-year-old daughter, Hannah, as I didn't think she had enough experience with the computer and keyboard to not get frustrated. Truthfully, if I had had more time, I could have sat and worked on it with her as the program even has mouse-learning practice. However, I decided Hannah was a bit too young and her attention span not quite ready for this program.
  • Even though my boys are nine-years-old, they are already reading at at least a third-grade level which is the max for the program. I therefore decided this wasn't a fit for them as well.
  • However, my daughter Abigail, was the perfect age for this program!
What do I NEED to use this program?
A computer with a mouse and an internet connection are the only requirements! Now while that seems like a simple answer, it is important to keep in mind that this is not an app. Therefore, your child needs to be comfortable using the mouse on a desktop computer. If you wanted to use this program with a child who isn't very experienced with a mouse, you could still do that if you are willing to sit and help them through the entirety of their experience. There is even practice sessions and reinforcements for young people not knowledgeable of the mouse. 

What is so special about THIS reading program?
Reading Kingdom was designed by Dr. Marion Blank. Dr. Blank is a world renowned expert on literacy. She has developed a six skill model of reading instruction which incorporates elements of phonics and whole language while teaching additional skills required for reading and writing success without requiring kids to learn complicated rules. 

Think about it. In order to overcome the problems inherent in sounding out, phonics relies on children memorizing almost 600 rules. And of course, we all know those rules have a gazillion exceptions. While phonics specializes in sounds, Dr. Blank's technique uses sequencing, motor skills, meaning, grammar, comprehension, AND sounds. 

Does it REALLY customize to your child?
It does! As Abigail moved through the program, her path was customized to her particular reading needs based on her previous interactions. I especially loved that the program:
  • Skips over words that Abigail can already read and write. This saves time and helps with her motivation!
  • Offers tutoring techniques that enable Abigail to end the activity successfully.
  • Includes a Progress Check at the end of each of the five levels to assess whether Abigail has mastered that level. If it is on track, the child advances. If it isn't, a new set of review activities is generated. 
Is the program FUN?
Yes. Abigail really enjoyed the program and found it fun. It is not recommended that you spend a ton of time on thee program each day. In fact they recommend 10-15 minutes when they first start, four times a week. This is very accurate as Abigail would start getting a bit tired at the 15 minute mark. But as you can see from the sample picture below, it is not all hard work. They make it fun at the same time!

How does the program know where to begin?
The first thing Abigail did was to take a reading Skills Survey. This activity began before the actual teaching. It assessed her skills in reading and writing and she was started at a point just right for her reading level which prevented her from wasting time or getting frustrated. 

Is it easy to navigate the website?

As you can see from the screenshot above, the program is set up in a way that is easy to follow and understand (for both the child and the parent!)

How can I learn MORE?
The Reading Kingdom website is simply outstanding. It provides SO MUCH information about what this program is and is not. They offer a 30-day FREE trial so you really can't lose in giving this program a try. I personally am planning to use this as my PRIMARY teaching tool for Hannah. It's that good! Check it out. You don't want to miss this outstanding program. You can also visit them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram

P.S. Reading Kingdom also offers an ASD Reading. This is designed for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Current reading education relies on methods that often don't work for children on the spectrum. However, the innovative content and methods of ASD Reading enable to achieve success, even when they are non-verbal!

Learn to Read with Reading Kingdom OR ASD Reading {Reviews}

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1 comment:

Praveen Menon said...
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