Tuesday, June 23, 2015

A TOS Review: SmartKidz Media Library for Homeschoolers

I cut my teeth on PBS documentaries. It could be because we could only get two television stations way out in the country where we lived. One of those was PBS. I still enjoy a good documentary. They have become an important part of our homeschool experience. We are fortunate to live in a day and age that we can truly utilize all manner of media to help us along. The struggle often is to find media sources that are not only educational, fun, but appropriate for my guy to plug into. I don’t want to have to wade through filthy language or inappropriate subject matters.

I recently had the opportunity to review the SmartKidz Media Library for Homeschoolers from SmartKidz Media .

What I Received

I received a full year subscription to the SmartKidz Media Library for Homeschoolers  Most of the resources are videos, but there are quite a few music selection; as well as a few book and study guide resources. I’ve listed some of the content included.

Animals & Wildlife Collections
Documentaries & Culture Collections
Health & Fitness
History Titles
Lifestyles & Cuisine
Travel & Adventure: World Wide Discovery Collections
Cooking Instruction
Classical Music Collections
Cultural Music Collections
Cultural Music: Vol 2
Jazz and Blues Classics Collections
Relaxation Music Collections
Mighty E-Book Collection
Sign Language Collection
Special Needs Learning
Living Skills
Fun Zone

You can see that there is a BIG selection. Some of the sections have minimal content right now (or none at all). However, there is content being added all the time. We found plenty to keep us occupied. All the media is of the streaming kind so you will need to make sure your internet connection is a good one. It can be streamed on a variety of devices. We used it on our computers and Kindle Fire.

How We Used This Product

Our summer schedule is fairly easy and breezy. We just jumped in and started watching what appealed to us. I was interested in those Sushi cooking videos. Josiah wanted to watch some sort of video series entitled “Designed By Nature.” He was fascinated.  He was also interested in videos about World War II.

This is just a screen shot of the front page. If you could scroll down you would see resource after resource.

I loved that I could just let him browse the site without worrying about what he was watching. There weren’t any questionable ads, either. Josiah is 13. I was horrified when this past winter he was watching a perfectly harmless video on Youtube and saw a commercial for a very popular movie that in no way shape (or form) should be in front of a young teenagers eyes. We aren’t the strictest parents in the world when it comes to media, but good grief! Somethings I just don’t want to explain at this stage in the game (‘nuff said).

One of my absolute favorite parts of the site was the music selections. There are several classical albums available in the fine arts section. And….Jazz! We listened to a creaky, old Ella Fitzgerald album. It was just heavenly. And I have to tell you about the Nature’s Odyssey collection. It’s just a little collection of ambience. There were a few evenings I put on Nature’s Song, which is a lovely recording of birds and crickets at nighttime. I fixed myself a hot cup of tea and pretended I was at the farm. I have found that gentle music and lovely songs create such a peaceful atmosphere. This was certainly a pleasant bonus.

I need to also talk a little about the Mighty Ebook Collection. It is primarily for preschoolers, but we enjoyed the Aesop Fables section. Josiah is dyslexic and this was a nice feature to utilize.

My Thoughts

This has been a nice product to review. I look forward to really use it more during our more structured homeschool year. I can see it being a valuable tool. I would like to see a handier search feature. I am a little bit random…I got distracted going through the videos. “Oh! Let’s watch that one. Wait! How about that one!”

You can connect with SmartKidz Media via the following media outlets. Don’t forget to click on the banner to read more reviews.

SmartKidz Media Review

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