Ages: PK - High School
We travel a lot. Carrying extra paper and books for practice can really get to be too much at times. I plan out their studies for while we are on trips and sometimes I find that they need a little extra help with a new topic. Most hotels we stay at have a business center I can print materials from, but not all of them are reliable. And then of course I have extra paper to carry around. I hate randomly visiting educational sites that have a ton of pop-up advertisements on them. That is annoying to me and the kids. We have found a program that gives the kids the extra help they need and I don't have extra papers to carry around. We were given the opportunity to try out IXL and it has been a great addition to our homeschool for supplementing with the kids in their math and language arts.
Membership with IXL gives you access to over 4,000 math and language arts skills. Math topics covered range from PK through high school. Language Arts topics range from 2nd grade through 8th grade. Kids get immediate feedback for their work and parents can get reports showing their student(s) progress.
IXL is not meant to take the place of any curriculum, but it should be used to supplement and provide extra practice for students who may be struggling in areas of math and language arts. IXL has the philosophy that any student can learn by giving them an environment that allows them to learn. I agree that everyone can learn.
One of my favorite things about IXL is that it is not full of distractions. There are no flashy pictures, annoying music or an avatar to keep them distracted. The interface is easy to use for even the most beginning student. Subjects are broken down by grade level and then topic levels take them down to even easier to use lessons.
There are no instructional videos since it is meant to be a supplement to your other curriculum. For the younger years though, the questions can be read to them, as well as the answers. This really has helped our kids in the past, and it continued to help our struggling reader, Caty.
I have been using IXL Math to keep myself on track for planning Caty's math. We use IXL Math a lot to fill in the missing cracks in what we are doing. Lydia is also able to practice her multiplication facts without the necessity of carrying flashcards around everywhere we go on a trip.
Language Arts topics have been nice to go along with the curriculum that we are using. Lydia (who is not a worksheet person at all) is able to gain extra practice in those skills. The boys, who have difficulty writing out answers on worksheets, are able to practice those grammar skills needed for writing reports that we are desperately working on.
If the kids are having a decent attention day, they may spend longer on IXL than I originally planned. They get lost in answering questions. They don't even realize they have answered so many. But on those days where their attention span is not very long, they can answer just few questions in order to get that extra practice. Oh yeah, and Caty really likes the certificates that we can print for her portfolio. This is our second year using IXL and I plan to continue using it as a supplement for our homeschool.
You can visit IXL and try them out for free. You can try up to 20 questions a day for free, so you try it out before you make a paid commitment. Pricing for family memberships start at just $9.95 per month or $79.00 a year for one subject. For both subjects, it is $15.95 per month or $129.00 a year. Each additional child costs an extra $2.00 a month or $20.00 a year.
Several members of the Schoolhouse Review Crew were given the opportunity to try out IXL in their homes. Take some time to read how their families used IXL by visiting the Schoolhouse Review Crew blog.