Zane Education is an online video library, offering visual learning on a huge number of topics! The site also offers lesson plans and quizzes to go along with the video. Perhaps the most unique part of the Zane program is what they call “The Missing Piece”, including subtitles with the videos! Research indicates that there is a link between the use of subtitles and an improvement in children’s literacy skills. This is something I heard about as a classroom teacher, and if you think about it, it makes sense. Do you remember those “sing-a-long” videos that were popular when we were kids? You know, with the bouncing ball that would travel over the words to the song? I remember learning lots of catchy tunes that way :), but I also remember recognizing those words that I saw on the screen when I saw them in a book. The same thing applies here.
There are videos available in many subject areas, from art and biology, to history, math, music and science. Videos are organized by subject as well as grade level. There are videos for all grade levels, elementary to high school. While watching the videos, students have access to a glossary, thesarus, enclyclopedia, and the “World Fact Book” which all give them additional information. Both of my sons thought the World Fact Book was pretty cool, because it had all kinds of information about different countries, their flags. etc.
The downloadable lesson plans for the vidoes are very helpful. They include review questions, key glossary terms and suggestions for activities and discussion. The videos range as far as how long they are, with some that my younger son watched being around 10 minutes, and some that my older son watched being around 20.
I found the videos to be great way to supplement our curriculum. We used them a lot for history, music and art. We also enjoyed the science and literature videos as well. I searched for videos based on topic to tie into some of the things we were studying, and we usually watched them together. I thought the quizzes were a nice feature as well, I used them mostly for review.
Zane is great for use in a homeschool setting, and is easily used to supplement any curriculum. Membership costs for Zane vary, depending on how much access you want. A Gold membership, giving you access to all of the videos, quizzes, lesson plans etc. for a whole year, costs $17.99 per month or $197.89 per year. A Silver membership, which provides you access to all of the videos within a grade level of your choosing, costs $12.99 per month/$142.89 per year. A Bronze membership, which allows you access to all of the videos within a subject area of your choosing, costs $8.99 per month/$98.89 per year.
That’s expensive, I know, and I don’t believe a regular membership would fit within my homeschool budget. I would consider a monthly membership, to allow my kids access to a specific subject, if I thought it would benefit our studies, but I don’t have an extra hundred or more dollars to spend on a supplement. Zane is a nice program, and if you did have some extra money and wanted to use it on this, I would say go ahead, but if you are pinching pennies, then probably not. You can get a limited free membership to Zane if you want to check it out for yourself. To learn more about Zane Education, click here:
**Disclaimer: I was given free access to this program for the purpose of writing this review. All opinions expressed are my own.