Embracing a Healthy Family: kindergarten curriculum
Showing posts with label kindergarten curriculum. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kindergarten curriculum. Show all posts

Starfall Education Foundation's The Starfall Home Membership Review



I'm always looking for fun and educational learning  games for both my younger child and my grandchildren so I was very happy to have an opportunity to review The Starfall Home Membership from Starfall Education Foundation. It is a flexible online program that offers free and fee-based curriculum either on a desktop or mobile via Apple, Google Play or Amazon Apps. There is also a store to purchase various products such as children's books, instructional cards and more. For some parents and educators, it's important to stay linked up with the States Standards Initiative and align with Common Core which Starfall does. It's a comprehensive program for the experienced home educator, teacher or the parent who wishes to provide their young one with further educational opportunities. 

In the Complete Guide to Using Starfall, you will have everything you need in one place to understand how to move forward with your child(ren). What I liked first upon setting up my child and grandchildren to begin the program was the Guide.  It provides key skills appropriate for each grade level and how the skills align along with mobile app activities.  There are supplemental products as well as parent and teacher resources. I suggest the first step in starting to begin your plan for teaching is to review the many guides that pertain to your needs:

  • Guide to Pre-K
  • Guide to Kindergarten ELA
  • Guide to Kindergarten Math
  • Guide to First Grade Reading
  • Guide to First Grade Math
  • Guide to Second Grade Reading
  • Guide to Second Grade Math
  • Guide to Starfall Book Levels

Membership Perks Only $35 Annually

There are many free activities but once you purchase the $35 yearly membership, you will have complete access to all the activities, expanded math and reading content covering grades Kindergarten through second grade and additional songs and rhymes.

Review of Guide and Second Grade Math:

Each PDF downloadable is full of information to kick start your child's education in that subject matter. For this part of the review, I'm going to cover Second Grade Math which I'm using as a refresher for my youngest child.  The Guides are short and concise and outlines major areas and for Second Grade Math, it covers:  

  1. Understanding place values
  2. Using place values to add and subtract
  3. Adding and subtracting within 20
  4. Foundations for multiplication
  5. Beginning Multiplication

The actual program is very easy for younger children to use with click and drag features, colorful animations and pictures, playful music and clear audio to easily understand.  There is repetition in the activities to ensure a student is understanding and remembering the task. It was a good refresher for her.

Review of Guide and First Grade:

My granddaughter has been utilizing the online activities and the printables for Kindergarten. To date, I have not ordered any of the resources available on the online store so I cannot comment on the quality of those but knowing there are more resources available is good. Both her and her three year old brother take turns playing with the games and the various activities provided. She has utilized the online games, activities and the worksheets.

She really enjoys the worksheets and has already learned a lot from our time using The Starfall Home Membership. Backpack Bear's Books was also a wonderful activity as the words are spoken in a slow enough manner for children to understand and with easy click and drag features, it's a great way to teach words.

Of course everything that big sister does, little brother has to try too! They had a lot of fun playing the games and even though he didn't understand the activities clearly, I truly felt he benefited from it. We worked on this into the night so when I told them it was time to stop, they were disappointed. This is something you want to hear when you are trying to teach your children!

For the math, we started with Beginning Multiplication and moved into Understand Place Value and she really liked it! I heard her say it was fun and she smiled and was very happy that she was doing so well with using the program. She had been using the free resources for a couple of months prior to this review so she was already familiar with how to maneuver and get around each screen.  She often played it on her own via her tablet. It's very user friend and intuitive.

Talking Library Review:

I am a huge fan of libraries and being that we reside in an area where winter is very cold, the library isn't always feasible. The Starfall Talking Library is one of the best features I liked about The Starfall Home Membership and here is why:

  • Contains a wide selection of both non-fiction and fiction with poetry.
  • The opening page is easy to maneuver even for small children and has a selection of favorite books by other members.
  • The children can adjust the sound volume on the screen and can choose to pause the audible. An easy to see finger prompt shows the children to press the button to go to the next page.
  • Words are highlighted as the reader continues with each sentence for easy to follow along.
  • Sound effects provide a great way to capture the children's attention as the book comes to life.

Other Activities/Levels of Starfall 

We focused on Second Grade Math and Kindergarten for this part of the review.  It's great to know that my granddaughter will have the resources available for First Grade next year. As with the Kindergarten curriculum, there are many areas of concentration to include:

  • First Grade Math
    • Operations & Algebraic Thinking
    • Base Ten Number & Operations
    • Measurement & Geometry
  • First Grade English
    • Literature & Informational Text
    • Phonics

All of the different activities are engaging and fun for little minds. They are intuitive and makes learning fun versus boring and redundant.

Other Benefits of Starfall 

  • Starfall also has free and low-cost mobile apps via Apple iTunes, Google Play and Amazon Apps.
  • Products such as children's books, instructional cards and more are available for purchase at the Starfall Store.
  • Supplemental Parent and Teacher Resources in the Parent-Teacher Center.

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Overall, my family really liked The Starfall Home Membership from Starfall Education Foundation. It's a flexible program to be used on a desktop or on a device. It's fun, eye catching and full of many activities that will not only educate but provide hours and hours of fun. It's well worth the subscription cost to have a comprehensive math and English program, and for those that want a common core aligned program, it has all that you would want.

The Starfall Home Membership {Starfall Education Foundation Reviews}
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