Does your child understand how words work? How they are constructed? How adding prefixes and suffixes change the meaning of words? This is called morhpology, and WordBuildOnline by Dynamic Literacy will help your child understand all of this in under 15 minutes a day!
Since the end of April Tristan has been using WordBuildOnline at least 5 times a week. It’s set up for 5 lessons/week, with 25 weeks of content. Just right to cover a traditional school year and still leave a few weeks free for other business or unexpected life events. When Tristan misses a day, he usually then does two lessons to catch up – completely of his own initiative – brilliant!
Tristan likes to get up and start his day with WordBuildOnline before tackling the rest of the day’s work and fun. Because it takes only a maximum of 15 minutes per lesson, this is a good way to start. The lessons are counted down with a timer from either 10 or 15 minutes, depending on the type of lesson it is.
The short length of the lessons means that regardless of whether Tristan is flying through the lesson with ease, or struggling, he won’t be spending longer than that amount of time on them. The timing is just about right, in my opinion.
Tristan has said to me that he didn’t mind doing WordBuildOnline while his grandparents were visiting from overseas because it didn’t take him very long and he could finish it in the time it took everyone to get ready for breakfast.
Each week Tristan has been learning about a new prefix and how it works to change the meanings of several words. Later in the year he will also begin to work on some suffixes.
Your child will move through the lessons and learn what the words mean and how to correctly identify them in context. The last lesson of the week consists of a short 3-question quiz to assess the week’s understanding.
The basic structure of the lessons follow the same path, for example, every Monday he will do the same activity, but using the current week’s target structure. Tristan likes knowing that he will have a magic square or a Word Power coming up.
After only 3 weeks Tristan was picking up the structure and pointing out words in daily life. “intestine” wasn’t truly correct, but I love that he was starting to recognise “in” as a prefix and trying to understand them in new contexts.
By using the Parents’ screen you can see how your children are doing. You can set up an email if you’d like to be notified each time a lesson has been completed, edit your children’s profiles (as well as your own), and you can see the progress your children have been making. At a glance you will see their overall average, as well as how they have been doing in each lesson. For finer details, such as particular questions and answers, you can click through and see those, too. There are also short videos to watch that explain that week’s lesson plan. Just in case we need a refresher of how to use a particular word structure.
You may see that your children have been bouncing around between both the Novice and Mastery Levels, but don’t be alarmed about that. This program will automatically move a child between the levels based upon how well they’ve been completing previous lessons. The ease or difficulty of the lessons will adjust according to their understanding.
Should circumstances arise, or if your child needs more practice on some of the lessons and you “reset” a particular lesson (or even a week of lessons), then you need not worry about your subscription expiring. Even though you will have access for a full year, which should be ample time to complete the assignments, you’ll still have your subscription until the level your child is working on is complete. I really like this feature, as sometimes things just don’t go as planned and more time is required.
WordBuildOnline takes a couple of weeks to get used to, but then the learning really begins. Tristan enjoys his time learning about morphology, and he’s been able to take what he’s learned and apply it to new circumstances. He’s putting thought into his answers, and is keen not to miss even a day. All of these things combined, make WordBuildOnline a winner for us. I definitely see Tristan continuing until the lessons run out!
Update: WordBuildOnline have released a free version supported by advertising; the ads don’t interfere with the content and are kid-appropriate. There are no differences between the free version and the paid version except for the advertising. You now have the choice to use WordBuildOnline for free (with ads), or you can buy the “premium” (ad-free version) for $30.