Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Brillkids Little Reader review and Giveaway

Brillkids, what can I say? This product really does produce, and does what it claims to do. I know that there are many out there who believe that teaching young children to read before school age (generally 5 or 6yrs of age) isn't a good thing, and this review isn't about debating this issue. What I do want to share is a really great product that truly produces results in teaching infants/toddlers and young children to read.

Our journey began when my youngest at the age of 3 saw a commercial for Your Baby Can Read. As any skeptical parent who never met a baby that could read I took the infomercial with a grain of salt. Thinking it was another money scam out on the market and I wasn't going to pay for that.
Fast forward to today. Last December (2010) we were shopping at Walmart and we found a lone Your Baby Can Read on the shelf and thought we'd give it a try, and we did. What I saw was nothing short than miraculous. My 4yr old was reading words that not even my 7yr old could read at the time and she loved every minute of it! Maggie blew through the program in little as almost 2 months and she wanted more. Of course Your Baby Can Read was a precursor, a starting point if you will, and in that time I learned my baby girl is very much a visual spatial learner. This is why she picked it up so well and so quickly.

After completing the Your Baby Can Read I went on a search to see if there was more, anything else I could use to continue on with what we started.
Sure enough there was! I found Brillkids, and all I can say is wow!
I wasn't sure if Maggie was going to enjoy the format of learning words off of a computer versus having first learned them off of the television. So I thought we'd give it a trial run with Brillkids trial of their Little Reader software.
Maggie enjoyed and continues to enjoy Brillkids.

We love the Powerpoint features of the program


and even the extra add on of being able to download educational videos onto the Brillkids Little Reader and Maggie gets to sing along.

We love the printing out of the flashcards so we can practice words away from the computer as well.

What have I learned using Brillkids Little Reader? That this is a great product for young children , babies and infants.Its marketed to those that have infants and toddlers but works just as well for families who have young children (ages 4 and up) wanting to learn to read but just aren't getting the concept of phonics down. This was one area Maggie had difficulty with. We were going through the notorious cccccc..aaaaaa...tttt? What does that say? Maggie: ccccccc.....aaaaa...ttt. Frustration set in. She just wasn't hearing what she was sounding out. Phonics does take a good deal of auditory learning and if your child isn't an auditory learner then this is where frustration with reading begins.
Once she was able to see and hear the words it made much more sense to her and she was able to see the phonics patterns so she started figuring out words herself.
Its a great product for young children ( I'm talking 4 and above) if they are visual learners. That, yes, they do include phonics ( for those phonics fanatics out there) but in a more visual way rather then the old fashion, " Let's sound out each letter way."
I definitely can't be happier with Brillkids Little Reader, and neither can Maggie. Little Reader gets a two thumbs up in our house. So what are you waiting for? Give it a try now!

Our end result ( a rare reading by Maggie Reed, of the Little Red Hen)

Okay, so are you ready to try out Little Reader Semester 1 for yourself?

To enter the Giveaway: 1 entry per post..(this will give you 6 entries)

1. Follow Homeschool Lite

2. Go to Brillkid's website and post one thing that you learned or liked on their website.

3. Post this Giveaway on Facebook ( leave your Facebook name)

4. Tweet about this giveaway on Twitter (leave your Twitter name)

5. Follow Homeschool Lite by email ( the bar is on the right hand side)

6. Share this Giveaway on your blog

This Giveaway will expire on October 14, 2011!!!!!

Brillkids has given me the product to try and use with my daughter. They in no way paid for my opinion, it is my own.

Terms and Conditions of the Giveaway:
The winner will have 48 hours to respond to email or another winner will be chosen.
Fulfillment is through another party. I am not liable for missing prizes._

Giveaway is now closed!!!
Congratulations to the McElwain Family for winning the 1st Semester Brillkids Giveaway!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A Rough Start

Ever wonder why some of your best laid plans go out the door? I know I do.
This year is not going the way I wished it would. As I sit here and read other blogs about happy families that have found exactly what they want and its working great. I'm finding that I'm drawing in air and taking a deep breath and sighing it all out.

I'm finding my days filled with a 5 yr old telling me that she doesn't want to be homeschooled, that its no fun, and she wants to be back at school with her friends. Why do Hannah and Katie get to go and not me? I get to hear everyday.
I try so hard to keep things light and fun for her. Today we made an awesome recipe of playdough that used jello in the recipe. It was by far the best recipe for playdough I've ever made by far. Definitely gives you that store bought playdough without it being store bought. I have to say that I found it on Pinterst by the way.

We've done lots of arts and crafts. So don't think that I'm pushing my 5yr old all on academics. That's not it at all.
Last week we made a fun rainbow out of fruit loops. Talked about the colors (even though she knows them already), but talked about the colors that were in the rainbow. She surprised me and already knew that. But it turned out really cute.

Tomorrow, if its not raining I plan on making some sidewalk paint.
So really we're doing fun stuff that is fun to do. But for some reason Maggie just isn't so happy about it. Maybe with some time things will change.
But I just can't seem to hit my stride yet with any of this.

Even getting Marilyn excited about learning has been tough. She's been doing her work but its been tough for me to keep track of what she's finishing and what she isn't. We're using Christian light for her for Math and Language Arts. Still using the Stories of the Saints which by the way really does have excellent stories in it. Just hard for me to keep track of what she's doing because she thinks she can blow through the comprehension questions and skip the activities , which can range from drawing illustrations of what she read in the story, to writing reports. She just isn't taking her time on any of it.

I'm beginning to wonder if my heart is in any of this. Maybe not having them all home at the same time is affecting me and the girls more than I know.
I just know that this year has not gotten off to a great start for me and I wish I could make it better.