Friday, June 29, 2007

The Computer as a Learning Tool

On one of my many Yahoo Groups someone asked " Does anyone have any computer programs/games that they recommend for learning for young children? " And I having a rather extensive list decided to turn my reply into a post.

I love good children's software. Some children just connect with the information because they "think" they are goofing around... especially reluctant learners. I was rew
arded a grant while teaching to buy software for my classroom. I taught in an urban, 97% free lunch, 2nd grade classroom. If there is a shooting in the paper... it is usually from this neighborhood. My kids ranged from pre-K - 5th grade levels depending on the subject. I used the software to teach a portion of my class while I worked in small groups. Because of this I required a lot from my choices... not only did it have to be engaging, it had to teach a skill - no fluff, and it had to have excellent on-screen instructions so the children could work independently. The software I selected filled that need and with the acquisition of a Smartboard I could successfully work with groups of 5 while REAL learning was going on independently, at individualized levels in the back of the room. If you are considering buying software google a software review site like Superkids and read what others have to say.

A few of my grant software choice...

I plan on making computer time a part of our Friday school activities this fall. G loves the computer. Here is a list of online sites and CDs I plan to use this school year. I know the list is HUGE but I got many of the Cds very cheap. Many came from Menard's believe it or not and most of the others came from the coupon flier that often comes in the Sunday paper for cheap software {btw not cheap today when I checked the link so wait for a sale}, also the library's used book sale is a great resource. I rarely pay over $3-5.

Online Lessons
Starfall - reading
Study Dog - reading (get it free here)
Game Goo - reading
Dance Mat Typing -(thanks Dana)
Brainpop Jr.- all subjects
Jan Brett - drawing lessons
Wild Animal Cams - Type wildcam in the search box for current cams

Online Fun
Chateau Meddybemps
Up to Ten
Jig Zone
Chess Kids Academy

Cd Critical Thinking
Freddie Fish
Pajama Sam
Moop & Dreadly
Thinkin' Things All Around Frippletown
Space Station
Search and Rescue
Tonka Town
Rescue Heroes
Meteor Madness
Lava Landslide

Cd Reading
Phonics Success (12 Cds... got mine cheap at Big Lots)
Living Books
Arthur's Teacher Trouble
The Cat in the Hat
Reader Rabbit Reading Ages 4-6
Reading Blaster Jr
Reading Blaster 6-7

Cd Science
Thinkin' Science (G just started playing this one and is hooked!)
The Magic School Bus: Explores the Ocean
The Magic School Bus: Explores Bugs

Cd General
I'm ready for Kindergarten: Huggly's Sleepover
Big Thinkers! Kindergarten

Cd Writing/ Creativity
Kid Pix

Cd Math
Money Town

1 comment:

playingschool said...

Wow! What a list. I'll have to check some of these out. Thanks for sharing!