TOS Review - Time4Learning

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Computer based learning is a new & growing field.  There is such a large range of opportunities these days with the advancements in technology & the creators of Time4Learning have embraced these & written a complete multi-subject, multi-level curriculum to make learning easy in any homeschool.  


Time4Learning  provides students from PreK right through to Eighth grade lessons in a range of subjects completely online.  There are also 4 courses available for those in older high school grades.   Time4Learning presents lessons in Language Arts, Maths, Science & Social Studies in a variety of ways depending upon the student's grade/ ability & the subject matter.   Time4Learning provides parents with flexibility rarely seen in curriculum choices as it can be used as either a core curriculum or as a supplement to the student's other school work.  It may be used to reinforce a new concept or teach an area of learning difficulty.  The parent/ teacher decides what is required & pre-sets the program to their child's specific requirements.  
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Time4Learning engages the student with a variety of different lesson types.  Their Language Arts & Maths lessons are taught verbally with engaging graphics that often include fun cartoon characters. The Science & Social Studies lessons are a more traditional format of pages that the student reads with questions interspersed throughout.  These are immediately graded to ensure that both the student & teacher are aware if the concept needs to be reinforced.  Time4Learning also holds a realistic view of students academic levels allowing the student & parent access to the grade immediately above & below their registered grade thus ensuring the program can be individually tailored to the student's learning needs. After the child has been using Time4Learning for a month, they gain access to the Time4Art program which includes art history, art theory & art techniques. 

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A real bonus of the Time4Learning program is the ability of the parent to tailor a specific learning program  for their child.  Each grade level has a  downloadable list of  all the lesson plans available.  The parent is able to look at what they would like their student to learn in a specific time frame & plan their activities to correspond with these goals.  This makes it easy if you are required to fulfil various learning outcomes.  Time4Learning also provides parents with a full report on their student's progress which is accessible through the parent login.   Access to a parent forum is also available.

Time4Learning gives the option of many learning activities including quizzes & worksheets.  It also contains it's own word processing program "Odyssey Writer" which makes it easy for students to publish their work without having to go in & out of the program. At the end of the student's session they have access to the playground which holds a myriad of different activities for their enjoyment.  This is a great incentive tool.

The playground for Grade 5
We were given a 6 month subscription to Time4Learning for Zai in Year 5.  We chose to use this as a supplement to our curriculum focusing on the Language Arts area during the review period. Zai used it 4 times a week in addition to his other school work.  
 Zai  really appreciated the lessons & I often found his younger siblings watching along as well.  The content was relevant for his age & stage & although the cartoons were rather 'cutesy' he enjoyed them much to my surprise.  He seemed to grasp the concepts with ease, although he certainly preferred the lessons rather than the activities where he actually had to sit  & write.  Since he is 3/4 way through grade 5 (Australia follows the calendar year for schooling)  he was able to complete lessons on topics that he hadn't covered or needed to review, but wasn't repeating lessons he already knew.  
I found Time4Learning a little confusing at first, but after spending time watching the instructional videos & familiarising myself with the parent area I understood how to plan a program for the Zai for the required time.  I appreciated being able to access the full list of lessons available & printed it off to assist in planning.

Australian Students:
We used this as a supplement to our registration curriculum (NSW registration).  With the national curriculum being introduced over the coming years it would be necessary to ensure that the KLA's & learning outcomes in the new curriculum are covered within this program. This is necessary for each curriculum choice you make & is is easily completed as Time4Learning provides a full list of lesson plans  for each grade level.

Time4Learning is an engaging, academic curriculum choice that makes homeschooling easy for busy  families. Access to the program is available directly from Time4Learning for:
PreK to 8th Grade: $19.95/student/month ($14.95/month for each additional PreK to 8th student).
High School: $30/student/month.

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