Wednesday, February 24, 2016

A TOS Review: HelpTeaching.com


I have to admit I am not a big fan of The Worksheet. I understand the appeal, but to me they seem like a good excuse for busy work and don’t mesh with every learning style.
I tend to favor a variety of hands-on experiences in our homeschool. I like having the option of using eclectic methods. That being said, I also appreciate the need for tests and worksheets for practice or independent learning. 
Recently, I had the opportunity to review HelpTeaching.com. We received a one-year subscription to the  Pro Plan which has a variety of tools available for the homeschool family. A huge draw for me was the combination of skill mastery, review resources and  interactive options not generally seen with comparative products.


HelpTeaching.com is an online resource. The site includes printable worksheets and tests, online lessons, a handy test maker and more. There is something for almost everyone. The resources are intended for grades K-12. You will obviously need a reliable internet connection and a printer to really take advantage of the site.

There is a variety of options available for users on HelpTeaching.com. You can sign up for a free membership which allows some access to the site. A  Pro Plan provides the user the ability to create tests and assign them online. It also gives you access to hundreds of premade worksheets, tests and lessons. There is also a group subscription for schools and businesses.


How We Used And My Thoughts

I used the site primarily as a supplemental resource. I want to share with you how I used it with  the assistance of a few screenshots.
You can see that there is a line of tabs at the top of the screen. The first tab is the one I used most often. Tests & Worksheets.


One concern I have been having is that Josiah needs work on his comprehension skills. Because he is dyslexic I often focus more on the execution of reading rather than the content of the material. The site contains tons and tons of great little articles (fiction or nonfiction) that I can assign for just this purpose. He did really well and I could tell it built his confidence. This is certainly something we will continue to do.
I liked using the informational texts available. They are sorted into reading level. The word count and type of skill used is also recorded.

 

One of the articles I used was this one on yawning. You can see that I am given the option to print, save as a PDF or take online. I can also schedule the assignment for Josiah to do at a later date. There is an answer key provided, as well.


Some assignments I chose to print off, but I can tell you that the "take now" option is a lifesaver for those of us who find printer ink a hot commodity. The online test opens up in a separate window. It also presents each question at a time with the reading passage conveniently located at the top of the page.

This was Josiah's score. Instant gratification. The site also records what tests he has taken so I don't have to be on my game most of the time. You know how that is.


Another tab we used was the Lessons tab.

This screenshot features the science lessons. Now. I only found lessons from grades 5 and up. This wasn't a problem for us, but you might do so more digging if you have younger children.  You can see that there is a grade level available; as well as the time needed to complete the lesson as well as an "assign" tab. I never used the "assign" tab, but it allows you to send or share the link to your student.

I focused on the Astronomy lessons because Josiah had just completed a unit study on the planets. I felt like this was a great supplement. I loved all the options and little extras available for us.

I've provided a few screenshots for the "Why Does The Sun Look So Bright?" lesson.  Picture 1 is a informational article to read. When you scroll down just a bit you will find Picture 2. It includes a tab to take small quiz. There is also a multi-media presentation and a link for a related worksheet. Picture 3 provides links to related lessons and additional resources. The additional resources took us offsite to fun places.


A fun and handy tab is the Games tab. You can make your own or find one already premade. I found the word search generator to be very handy.


I didn't use the test generator at all for this review. Frankly, I was thrilled to find plenty of content I could use. I am sure that it will be something I will take advantage of in the future.
Given my aversion to most worksheets, I was pleasantly surprised with my HelpTeaching.com experience. This is much more than a worksheet site. I love the interactive aspect. I especially love the option to take the tests online. HelpTeaching is constantly adding new content. My son (who is an big sports fan) loved the sports themed worksheets and has suggested that they add more. As a homeschooling mama to a Middle-School-aged son I just appreciate the help.

You can connect with HelpTeaching.com via the following social media sites. Don't forget to click on the banner below to read more reviews.


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/helpteaching

Google+: https://plus.google.com/b/100894483454551317755/+Helpteaching/posts

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/helpteaching/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/helpteaching  @helpteaching   #HSReviews #printableworksheets #onlinelessons #readinglessons


HelpTeaching Review


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