Online learning websites are a great way to supplement your teaching, especially when things get busy. With an 8th grader and high school senior, I am always looking for ways to bring in some more challenging content (or in some cases extra help) for certain subjects. For this review, we got to check out the Pro Plan from HelpTeaching.com, and it turned out to be a big help for a number of reasons.
Help Teaching offers a huge bank of lessons for grades Kindergarten on through high school with videos, practice activities, games and tests designed to help kids learn all kinds of topics in Language Arts, Reading, Math, and Science. Some of the videos are made by the company, others are from Khan Academy, Educator.com, and Bozeman Science. There are lessons on a variety of topics. For my boys we focused on grammar (modifiers, verbals), reading (irony, propaganda, hyperbole), and math (probability, geometry), and my youngest wanted to check out some of the science just because he’s like that.
Now, once you set up a parent account, you go in and set up your classroom and add students. Then, you assign lessons by emailing the student the link to the lesson. This was pretty easy for us as my boys are older and familiar with email and everything. All they had to do was go into their email, click on the link and start the lesson. As the teacher, I could log on, review what I had assigned, and watch their progress. This came in very handy as I had a few last minute trips come up this year and I had to leave my youngest with my hubby. Since I’m the one in charge of school, it was simply easier for me to assign work from Help Teaching for the time that I was gone. That way, I could log on from wherever I was at the end of the day and make sure he was getting his work done or reassign or change things as needed.
Another option on the Help Teaching website is to create your own tests based on content you’re teaching. You can make any kind of test you want, from short answer to multiple choice, and they even have a bank of questions you can choose from and a library of images to use if you wish. This is a handy tool, especially when you have older students. After a unit study, you could easily put together a short test or quiz if you wanted to, or you could create practice tests to help your child prepare for a bigger test.
The site also offers a number of printable worksheets. I found the study skills worksheets and graphic organizers particularly interesting, but they also have a ton of stuff for math, science, language arts, and even art, music, and seasonal activities. Even after using this for a few months, I still feel like I haven’t gotten into everything it has to offer and I think it’s going to be something I come back to and keep finding new reasons to love. Honestly, for less than $25 a year, I think HelpTeaching.com is a great addition to any homeschool because it’s one of those things that will just make those hectic, crazy days easier, and also offers a lot of tools that they continuously update.
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