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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

VocabularySpellingCity TOS Review

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I received the 
from VocabularySpellingCity for review.

Price per year for the Premium Membership:
Families - $29.99 up to 5 students
Classrooms - $49.99 up to 25 students
Schools are priced per student - click HERE for prices on the entire school. 

Recommended for K-12'th grade.

What Is This? -

This is an online program mainly for spelling & vocabulary to help teach children to learn while having fun.  You, the educator, control what spelling lists, vocabulary and games the student(s) learn and play.  This program is offered to classrooms as well as homeschoolers and private schools.  

There are 3 options on how to use this site.

1) The no registration option.  With this you just go to the site and start with the word list, and let your child explore.  They offer tests, teach me, and games.  This is free and you do not need to even register to use this portion.

2)  The basic (free) membership option.  This is very close to the above with the exemption of that you register so you can save all your lists.  There is also no limit on how long you can use either option (1 or 2).

3)  The Premium Membership option.  This gives you one year access with the ability to create assignments, student log ins, access writing activities, student progress tracking, and premium games and activities.  The costs are listed above or click HERE

Option 3 is the option that I received for review.

In this chart below, you can compare the Basic package to the Premium package.  

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One of the great things about this website is that you can sign up for the Basic package and try it for a while.  If you like it and want to upgrade to the Premium package, you can.  

The site has several 'Teacher Resources' for you to choose from.  Below is a peek on what is offered on the site.   

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Are you working on 'parts of speech' this week?  In the blue above, there is a link for that with games, video lessons, printable worksheets and more!

They have 'holiday' lists to give your student(s) some holiday fun worksheets, lists and games (in the green box above).

They also have the 'Dolch-Sight Words' lists on this site as well (also in the green box above).

The company has won several awards for their great learning website! 

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The website also offers mobile apps for iPad, iPod Touch and iPhones.  Click HERE for more details.

How We Used This -

I had my 10 year old son get online with this program 3-4 times per week.  I created the spelling list for him.  We were on this first list for about 2 full weeks, then we moved onto the next list that I created for him. 

I am a firm believer that a child shouldn't get a new spelling/vocab list weekly unless he/she has mastered the previous one.  So that is why it took us (at times) a few weeks on one list like mentioning above.  It doesn't make sense to me to give a child a new list of words, when he/she cannot spell the words on the current list.

Anyway, with each of these lists, I had him do the 'teach me' portion.  This section, gave him the word, spelled it for him, used it in a sentence, then said the word again.  If you don't like the sentence it gives, you can create your own sentence as well as 'tweak' the definition to their understanding.  He then played several activities and games using words from my list.  There are several activities to choose from as you can see below.  

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Here are our two favorite games:  


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Letter Fall

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After he played these games for a few days (depending on how he did), I then had him take the 'practice test'.  This was a preparation for the main and 'final test'.  This program keeps the student(s) scores as well as the progress and time spent on the site for you.

One thing I need to mention is that it seemed that if I didn't 'assign' things to my son, it didn't show that he was working on the site.  I knew he had been, because I had watched him.  So if it is important for you to show documentation and/or progress, you need to make sure you have the student sign in and follow the assignments that you create.  If not, it will not show that he has been on the site and has completed any work.

What I Thought -

Overall, I think that the website was pretty good.  It had several different methods of teaching words and vocabulary.  For the teacher, there isn't much prep time involved in this program just assigning work.  For example, for the spelling list, you just create the list and assign it to the students.  You can assign it to 'certain' students or all of the students.  You can choose to do the assignments in a certain order as well.

If you have any problems or questions with the website, there is a 'Frequently Asked Questions' page that will easily address any issues.  (The company offers phone support as well.)

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I would recommend this to anyone who has children (or a classroom) that are in need of the hands on learning experience.  I feel that kids learn more when they can physically use their hands.  Let's face it, we live in a 'gaming' world so why not let them learn with the games they love to play?  


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