We received a one year license for my 3rd grade son and 5th grade daughter to use this online program. It covers many subjects and is very comprehensive.
MaxScholar is for kindergarten on up, and the MaxGuru program that we received gives us access to plenty of materials to keep my students busy!
To begin, the student logs in to their dashboard. As you can see, my son is greeted with the choice of doing MaxPhonics or MaxReading. He could also begin where he left off on either program.
My son has been working through the reading program and has unlocked a few levels.
The program recommends something for him to read, or he is welcome to pick and choose as he pleases within the levels he has unlocked.
Here is a screenshot of his progress in level 1. He can choose any of the books (seen with the teal dots on the left), and then choose a chapter to read, as shown with the green bubble in the middle.
The scores come from how he performs with the program. Basically, he reads first, then highlights the topic, main idea, and important details with different colored highlighters. Next, he’s prompted to check his highlighting. It shows him what MaxScholar thought should be highlighted next to what he actually highlighted. This will help him to get better at identifying this information in other reading as well!
Next, he answers comprehension questions about the reading passage, and is able to get his overall score for the chapter. He’s enjoying it a lot because he is able to do better than he was expecting to do. That’s always a plus for him!
On my end, on the Parent Dashboard, I’m able to look in on how my kids are doing. My daughter, a 5th grader, has also been working through the MaxReading program. She has been doing the exercises slowly, as we are using this as a supplement to her normal language arts program.
My daughter was also interested in the MaxBios and the MaxMusic sections of the website.
The bios are on many different influential people, but there were several that I found silly to be included. For example, Hip-Hop Artists aren’t exactly must know figures that I want my kids to know about, and many of the details in those bios seemed a little much for my students. They work through these passages just like with the MaxReading program with highlighting and everything.
Luckily, they didn’t spend much time in this section. In the future, I would like to assign specific bios and musicians to them to learn about through this program to jump-start their investigations on important people. That way, I can be sure my students are learning about figures such as Gabby Douglas or Albert Einstein rather than Tupac or Angelina Jolie.
My daughter did like the MaxMusic section a bit, and played around with it to Selena Gomez and Taylor Swift. She was bummed when I told her I actually wanted her to work on other parts of the program, too. If it was up to her, she’d hang out doing music all day!
When we initially expressed interest in this program, I thought we would be spending a lot of time doing MaxPlaces with my son. Unfortunately, you have to be at least at level 3 to even be able to use it at all, so he hasn’t been able to learn geography through MaxScholar’s MaxPlaces.
There are a few other sections that students can work on. MaxWords allows students to build words in many ways. They can learn and practice spelling rules, Latin Roots, and more. I hope to work on this more extensively during the summer with my kids once they are done with the bulk of their main language arts curriculum. This will help them to stay actively engaged and learning but give them a break from their normal routine.
There is also MaxVocab, which allows students to study and learn about the different vocabulary words as presented in each level of the MaxReading Books. I thought this was a cool resource, because it gave definitions and sample sentences, as well as synonyms and antonyms for many of the words.
Throughout the program, there are also games that students can play to further reinforce what they have learned throughout their lessons. This is yet another way for students to brush up on their skills but have fun!
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