Disclaimer: I received a FREE subscription to MaxScholar Orton-Gillingham Software through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Over the past few weeks, my youngest busy boy has been using MaxScholar Orton-Gillingham Software to begin learning the basics of phonics and reading comprehension. I have been very pleased with their gentle yet systematic approach to introducing phonics in visual, auditory, and tactile ways.
When you first open the MaxScholar program, you are greeted with your student’s dashboard. Depending on the age and level of your student, this dashboard may contain different programs.
My busy boy is only 3 years old, so we began with the lowest level of MaxPhonics in hopes to introduce him slowly to letter sounds and basic phonics.
The MaxPhonics program has many components and is broken down into visual, auditory, and tactile activities for each letter that is introduced. This allows for a multi-sensory learning experience and assures that whichever method your student learns most efficiently is offered.
Each lesson begins with the introduction of the letter name, a picture of the letter, and a video showing the correct pronunciation of that letter.
This includes a picture flashcard with an object that begins with that letter. This introduces the idea that letters create words and allows the student to see and hear the letter in action.
Next, there are several activities that encourage students to use their mouse or their fingers to trace the letter. This is proceeded by a video showing the correct formation of that letter. This is much easier for younger students to do on a tablet than on a desktop or laptop computer.
The lesson concludes with an auditory activity where the student chooses the objects that begin with the letter sound. This is a great way for students to hone their ability to listen carefully for letter sounds and apply what they have learned in the earlier activities of the lesson.
The MaxPhonics lessons are short enough to keep the attention of my little guy, yet offers thorough instruction and multiple activities for true learning retention. I did realize early on that it is still a bit early for my little guy to retain much of this information, but I will be starting again in the fall when he’s just a little bit older.
Due to the age and level of my youngest busy boy, we had access to both the MaxPhonics and MaxReading programs.
The MaxReading beginning lessons were centered around visual processing and reading comprehension. Each lesson offered a picture that was to be studied and discussed for a few minutes.
Then it progressed to several multiple-choice questions for the student to answer about the picture they had studied.
To be honest, this was very difficult for my little guy, but he is on the very youngest side of the recommended age bracket for these lessons. I talked through the questions with him and could often guide him to the correct answer, but I do not think he would have gotten there on his own.
I do plan to also try this with him when he’s a little bit older and I feel sure we will have very different and positive results.
About the Teacher Dashboard
The Teacher Account that is offered is a wonderful place to track your student’s progress throughout the MaxScholar programs.
It has multiple tracking and report functions that break down the learning activities for each student with a MaxScholar account. This allows the teacher to evaluate the learning experiences their students are having and target any problem areas that may need additional attention.
There are also additional teacher materials and videos for each individual program which encourages teachers to dive into all that the MaxScholar program has to offer.
It is a concise and easy to use dashboard and really gives the teacher all the control and oversight they need to make the most out of the Max Scholar programs.
Overall, I was very impressed with the MaxScholar Orton-Gillingham Software. I did feel that we didn’t get to experience all that it has to offer, simply because my little guy is so young. I look forward to using this in the future as a gentle introduction to phonics and reading when he is ready for that step.
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