Eli has been using IXL.com the past few weeks for Math and Language Arts practice. IXL is a K-12 online program that allows kids to work at their own pace through these crucial skills. You do need an internet connection to use the program, as it's a website; there's nothing to download. IXL is also available as an app for iPad or Android devices.
The cost of this program for one student is $9.95/month for one subject, or $15.95/month for both IXL Math and IXL Language Arts. Additional students are only an extra $2 per month. Alternatively, you can purchase an annual subscription which is only $79 for one subject, or $129 for both math and language arts. Each additional student is only $20 a year.
This screenshot shows how the program looks when he signs in. You can see the little blonde boy in the upper right corner (you get to pick your own character) and the Welcome Eli that shows he's signed in. This picture also illustrates the difference between skills he's learned, and skills he still needs to work on.
There's another area for parents.
In the parents area, I can see neat graphs like these that show me what skills he's working on, as well as reports on whether he's mastered a skill or still needs improvement in that area.
There's even a helpful bar graph that shows how much time he's practicing.
I get reports emailed to me each week, and I print them out and add them to my record keeping binder, so I have something to show for his online work. Because I'm anticipating Eli heading off to high school next year, I want to be able to bring work samples to his admissions interview to demonstrate what we've been covering this year, to aid them in placing him appropriately.
Eli hops onto IXL.com every day at "nap time," which is really just "quiet time" for the older kids, but Katie and Luke still nap. I've asked him to cover 3 areas in math and 3 areas in language arts each day, to keep his skills sharp.
Since the program is designed to be a supplement, it's pretty fast paced. It's not intended to teach the skills, but to review what they've learned from their regular lessons. If there is a skill that they missed at a previous grade level, it's perfectly okay to move to that grade, work on the subject matter that they missed, and then go back to their regular grade. It's very easy to jump around and find what you're looking for, such as multiplying fractions or understanding root words and suffixes. For math, there are skills ranging from pre-K to pre-calculus, truly a vast array of topics. For language arts, the levels currently range from second to eighth grade.
In addition to the reports, I occasionally receive extra emails when he's hit a new milestone, such as 500 or 1,000 problems, or a time spent milestone. For children who are motivated by a certificate, these are a nice extra, and would be something to show to Daddy, or the grandparents, for a younger child.
You can connect with IXL.com on Facebook, Twitter, and G+. Click the box below to read the experiences of other Crew families that are also using IXL.com.
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