Tuesday, June 7, 2016

MaxScholar-A Review

MaxScholar is an excellent online resource that offers a variety of activities for students to improve reading skills with their MaxScholar Reading Intervention Program. For this review we were generously given a one year license to the MaxGuru suite, which includes MaxPhonics, MaxReading, MaxWords, MaxMusic, MaxBios and MaxPlaces.
MaxScholar Reading Intervention Programs Review

The MaxScholar Reading Intervention Program is based on the Orton-Gillingham method and geared toward children who struggle with learning disabilities like dyslexia, ADHD, and processing problems OR who are more simply struggling to read. Its engaging, multi sensory approach aims to access all pathways of the brain to establish permanent knowledge. MaxScholar has a TON to offer for students in kindergarten all the way thru high school; for my younger crowd MaxPhonics was the perfect place to start!  
How we used it:
Evan is six years old and ripe for reading! I am so proud of the hard earned progress he has made over this last year, and was excited to bring MaxScholar into the mix. We spent the most time with MaxPhonics, MaxReading and MaxWords to iron out and reinforce those foundational phonics, reading comprehension and early spelling concepts. 
MaxPhonics was our favorite! Evan made great use of the blends and digraph activities while Bennett, my preschooler, was wholly engaged with the beginning letter sounds. 
Here are some screenshots of the letter "f" activities. 
Each letter has a visual, tactile, and an auditory component. In the tactile activity students can practice their handwriting by either drawing the letter with their finger on a touchscreen or using a mouse to trace it out.

Associating letter sounds with a picture-as in using the image of a fox for the letter f- is a great left brain/right brain exercise for the struggling reader who may have a real learning disability like dyslexia.

Matching games are always a hit in this house and this one is no different. Here you match the letter sound to the picture that begins with that letter. As an aside, MaxScholar is touchscreen friendly and in fact, I found it easier for my littles to navigate on their tablets.

I introduced a more formal spelling curriculum earlier this year with Evan and MaxWords has become my go to reference for spelling rules! As you can see below, students can review spelling rules and are given a handy list of examples with an auditory component as well. In MaxWords you will also learn about prefixes, suffixes, and Latin root words.

Though we mostly stuck to the early learning activities, I noticed a great deal of reading comprehension exercises across almost every component we explored. MaxBios for example offers great little(yet comprehensive) biographical sketches on a vast variety of people from famous musicians and inventors to influential women. Though Evan is not at the point where he could fluently read and highlight these pages on his own, I can easily read them aloud to him and then test his understanding with the corresponding comprehension questions. 

My only small dislike of the program overall would be it's music and games selection. I wasn't a fan of many of the artists chosen and didn't think their lyrics offered any real depth of learning-however, it's certainly no deal breaker when considering the overall worth of this program. The phonics program is tried and true and that's just the beginning. You can purchase a 12 month digital license to MaxGuru for $279, or buy the K-2 pack including phonics levels 1-4 and reading levels k-2 for $99.

Click on the banner below to see what the fellow crew thought of learning with MaxScholar.
And, be sure to check out MaxScholar on social media at the following links:

    Facebook: MaxScholar, https://www.facebook.com/MaxScholarLLC/?fref=nf

    Twitter: @MaxScholarLLC, https://twitter.com/MaxScholarLLC

    Pintrest: MaxScholar LLC, https://www.pinterest.com/MaxScholarLLC/

    Google+: MaxScholar, https://plus.google.com/+Maxscholar/posts

    LinkedIn: MaxScholar, https://www.linkedin.com/company/2884620

    YouTube: MaxScholar LLC, https://www.youtube.com/user/MaxScholarLLC

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