Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
I recently had the opportunity to check out the MaxScholar Orton-Gillingham Software as an online reading intervention program. Both my 12 year old daughter (who does not struggle in reading) and my six year old son (who is still in the early stages of learning to read) spent some time trying out different aspects of the program.
There are a variety of different component to this program that work on reading through vocabulary, music, phonics, words, and more. When the student first begins they take a placement test that helps them be in the right levels of the various programs.
My daughter is a musician, so after her placement test, she immediately wanted to check out MaxMusic. This program used songs from a variety of popular movies and musicians to help with reading skills. There were different activities including reading the lyrics and picking out various parts of speech. My daughter’s favorite was when she was able to use a virtual keyboard to follow along with the music and choose the right notes.
My six-year-old son enjoyed the MaxMusic but also checked out the MaxPhonics component of the program. He was working on the earliest level, which was all about learning the individual letters and their sounds. Each letter has a lesson which worked on learning to recognize the letter, learning the sound of the letter, and learning how to write the letter. The program incorporated tactile, visual, and auditory learning for each letter. The student would hear and see the letter, then have an opportunity to trace and write the letter with the mouse. Finally, there were activities to help them work on recognizing which objects began with that letter sound.
The MaxReading section has selections for a variety of reading levels including high school students. There were even selections about a variety of college majors which would be very interesting to a student that was trying to decide what they wanted to study. Inside of the reading program the selections has vocabulary words highlighted and if the student needed help with the word, they could click on the word and be provided with the definition, an example in a sentence, and synonyms. Next, the passages had the student highlight the topic, main idea, and important details. After that step the student worked on using an outline with the reading passage. Following the outline, the student completes a writing exercise. They can choose from three different options for the writing prompt. Finally, the student is asked questions about the reading passage.
In addition to the MaxVocab that is offered with-in the reading component, students can go directly to MaxVocab to get more vocabulary via the dictionary portion or play games such as hangman to improve the students vocabulary.
Another great component of this program are the MaxBios. you could choose a famous person from a variety of options including Aretha Franklin, Georgia O’Keefe, and even Mother Teresa. The student would then read the short biography, have the option of virtually highlighting important facts, and then be asked to answer questions based on the biography. A great way to include history and even art and music studies into reading. Similar to the MaxBios is MaxPlaces except instead of people it uses reading passages to explore a variety of different places throughout the world.
Overall, I found that this program has a variety of different activities and could be a great asset to a student that enjoys working and learning online. It can support reading skills for everyone from a young student learning to read to a high school student that wants to improve comprehension skills.
I highly encourage you to click on the graphic below and check out the other reviews to see how different families used MaxScholar in their homes with a variety of different ages and reading abilities.