My, my, my… the online curriculum options just keep getting better and better. We were recently given the opportunity to review Essential Skills Advantage and it is AWESOME!
Essentials Skills Advantage (ESA) is designed to help kids in K – 6th grades build and strengthen foundational Language Arts and Reading skills. ESA retails for $9.99 a month for a premium membership of 24/7 unlimited advertising free access.
You can try out a free trial of the full version before you buy to see how this wonderful program will work for your family. ESA has just started a free version too that is sponsored with advertising if you don’t mind the ads popping up while learning. For a limited time, you can use the coupon code TOS50 and receive a 50% discount on the full advertising free Premium Membership version, and with your discount your cost would only be $4.99 per month as long as you remained a member.
By strengthening their “essential” skills, and building a strong foundation, kids can learn to master any other curriculum. ESA has over 20,000 learning activities and teaches 38 phoneme sounds, progression from phonics to complete sentences, 220 English words to help your student master the English language that make up to 70% of the words we use in our daily life, learning the meanings and comprehending the outcomes of stories they read, and grammatical rules of spelling.
Both kids and parents can keep track of progress. Kids are encouraged to progress and can earn virtual silver and gold stars and printable certificates to keep them motivated to learn.
I have set the program to allow each child to work in their current grade, plus work on lessons that are a grade below and a grade above for both review and additional challenge. Both the kids and I are pleased with their progress.
ESA is online, but is designed to appeal to all types of learners including visual, auditory, and kinetic learners and works well for on level learning, remedial practice, and is also flexible for those with learning disabilities. The majority of kids can learn to master the essential skills with ESA.
I usually have the kids spend 20 to 30 minutes each day doing a spelling, reading comprehension, and vocabulary activity each day on the ESA curriculum. They have their own dashboard on ESA and can choose from several options: vocabulary, spelling, reading comprehension, word puzzles, fill in the blank, grammar, and so on.
Once they have completed their lesson they can see the stars they have achieved by answering correctly. Most of the time, the program will not let them progress until they have answered the problem correctly. This method allows them to make mistakes, but also ensures they have learned the correct answer before moving ahead.
All of my kids love ESA and can’t wait to get on the computer each day. I have them work on two or three assignments per day. It is quick and painless (no whining, no drama, and no tears), and lots of fun. With six kids all waiting for their turn, and excited about their schoolwork, I just wish we had more computers in the house! While one is on the computer the others are doing book work or hands on learning. But even though they have to wait on each other and take turns, they stay excited and motivated to for their opportunity to do their online learning programs. I am thankful!
Be sure to read what other homeschool families on the Schoolhouse Review Crew had to say about ESA.