Monday, November 21, 2011

TOS Review: Read Naturally's "Read Live"

Today's review is a program by Read Naturally called "Read Live".  It seems to be designed for a classroom setting, but can be used by homeschoolers as well.  The product website states that the program can be used from first grade through adult.

Read Live is a web-based program which allows you to assess a student's reading level, and then walks them through reading lessons.  The assessment paragraph that Wonder Boy read was based on Hank Aaron.  Baseball (well, sports in general) are not really his thing.  However, when he got to the lesson page, he was allowed to choose from about 12 different animals to learn more about.  He loves reading about animals, so this was right up his alley.  He chose the platypus, partly because there is one in one of his favorite cartoons.  The lessons involve several bouts of timed reading, typing, following along while the program reads out loud, and reading out loud themselves.  I was pleased that I correctly guessed my son's reading level, and he enjoyed the lessons.  I think the nature theme will help keep him interested.  I will definitely have him continue the lessons until my subscription runs out.

There were two things I found a bit problematic with the program:  the set-up, and the amount of typing.  This program is best used by children who already know how to type, as part of the typing portion is timed.  A child who does not know how to type will spend a lot of the allowed time simply searching for the right keys.  Set-up was a little problematic because it is designed for schools, so you have to set up a school, then a teacher, then a student, then assign licenses to all three.  A separate homeschool set-up would remedy this.  Thankfully, you only have to do it once.

Read Live can be ordered by calling Read Naturally at 800-788-4085.  A 12 month subscription for one child is $149, or you can subscribe for 6 children at $299.  Other products include Take Aim! at Vocabulary and Word Warm-ups.

***Note:  I received a trial subscription to Read Live in exchange for my review through TOS Homeschool Crew.  All opinions are my own.

1 comment:

Sweetpeas said...

Good review, thank you for mentioning the typing, that would definitely be a consideration, my children would still struggle with a timed typing thing I suspect.