Monday, August 25, 2014

Essential Skills Advantage Review

I received one year of the Premium Plan from Essential Skills Advantage to review. The Premium Plan is available for $9.99/month and covers reading and language curriculum from Kindergarten to Sixth Grade. The design of Essential Skills Advantage will appeal to all types of learners. So whether your child is a visual, auditory or kinestetic learner, there will be activities designed specifically for them. This program is interactive and will engage your child and challenge them to want to learn more. 
Here's a quick look at the programs available from Essential Skills Advantage!
The Essential Skills Advantage online program teaches:
Phonemic Awareness - introduces 38 phoneme sounds, teaches how to recognize these sounds in words, and how to add, subtract or substitute these phoneme in words. 
Super Phonics - teaches children how to read the alphabet to complete sentences.
Sight Words - The Dolch Sight Words are the 220 English words that appear in 50%-75% of speaking, reading, and thinking. They are essential to mastering the English language. 
Reading Comprehension - learn to read the meaning, discover the conclusion, identify the main ideas and word recognition. 
Fun with Spelling - teaches the rules to reading and spelling, how to blend words, learn to spell words in context, learn words from memory. 
The menu system makes it super easy to find activities! We typically do not follow a specific schedule, and decide based on preferences for the day what the kids want to learn. So if they want to match letters or listen for the letters, they can pick that activity. Or if they would rather a visual activity for matching, they can do that too. Each group of activities is arranged in an order that is used for progression, but we sometimes work on the activities out of order. It works for us and might not be the way that is best for others. But I find that letting the kids complete activities they want to do keeps them interested and once they master it, they easily move on to the next activity with no hassle. We typically complete a full section before we move on to the next.

Essential Skills Advantage Review
We have been using our computer for this program, so that also means that my kids need to either work together or take turns using the mouse. This program is not compatible with iPad's and Android tablets, which is very unfortunate, because we just got iPads! The kids definitely prefer using their iPads for their online activities. It's just easier to use for little ones and they don't have to wait to take turns, like they have to with the computer. I have high hopes that this program will be compatible with iPad's and tablets in the future. 
The lessons for Kindergarten are arranged like this:
Readiness Skills - Picture Vocabulary, Visual Skills, Auditory Skills, Basic Concepts
Phonics - Alphabet, Phonemic Awareness, Consonants
Sight Words - Word Lists, Colors, Numbers, and More
Stories - Stories

There are so many different lessons available! Each one is broken into three stages and after completing each stage, you will be awarded by the Star System! The Star Chart will show your kids their current grade, their learning progression on a chart, and their best scores. Any scores over 80% will receive a gold star and any scores under 80% will receive a silver star. Children will not feel pressured and will instead be encouraged to turn that silver star into a gold star! Their effort will not go unnoticed.

Here's a visual of some of the activities Essential Skills Advantage offers at the Kindergarten grade level. As you can see, this program covers a huge range of activities and has been very enjoyable to work on!

Find "npmp."

Find the "smallest" shape.

Find the picture that shows the word "open."

Here are a few samples of the differences between the Kindergarten activities and the 1st Grade activities. There are less pictures used in the 1st Grade activities and they focus more on sight words and spelling.

What we liked most:
- Essential Skills Advantage will appeal to all learning types!
- There are so many activities to choose from!
- This program is engaging and interactive.
- Is visually appealing and fun to use.
- It does not focus on just sight words or just phonics. It incorporates several ways to learn to read.

Essential Skills Advantage now offers a sponsored version of their program that is free to users. You can sign-up completely free at Members will enjoy access to every course ESA has to offer, but there will be sponsored advertising and some of the available features will be unavailable.

If you are interested in purchasing the Premium Plan from Essential Skills Advantage, use the coupon code TOS50 to receive 50% off the monthly membership fee! This code will be good until October 1st. The 50% discount will apply as long as you remain a member. The membership fee will be reduced to only $4.99/month/student.


If you are interested in reading other reviews on the Essential Skills Advantage program from the TOS Crew, click on the banner below!

Click to read Crew Reviews

Crew Disclaimer

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...