16 Nov HowtoHomeschool.net’s Review of Edublox Online Tutor
Have you heard of Edublox Online Tutor? I did a little research recently, and I discovered that the company offers online multi-sensory programs that help students improve their concentration, processing, memory and reasoning skills. Read our Edublox review and learn how their programs also improves students’ performance in reading, spelling, writing, and math.
Here’s what can you (and your child) can expect in terms of academic improvement:
- After about 15 to 20 hours on the program you may notice improvement in some non-academic areas. Maybe your child is able to organize their work better, is more attentive, or is able to express themselves more easily.
- After about 30 to 40 hours on the program you should see some significant improvements in your child’s academics. Your child might remember more, require less time to complete work, etc. At this point you might even see an improvement in self-esteem (that’s super!).
- With time, your child should get to the point where she is at least one year ahead of her grade level in her particular area of difficulty. The minimum time that is required to achieve this is about one year, but it can take up to two years. So, it’s not an overnight solution – but solutions rarely are. I’ll be thrilled when my son reaches grade level in his most difficult subject, let alone surpasses grade level!
Do your kids have to be behind for Edublox Online Tutor to be a good fit? Not at all. Their products work for lots of kids – they’ve been optimized for children ages 7- 13, but older students can also benefit; as can average students, gifted learners, and students struggling with dyslexia, dysgraphia, dyscalculia, and ADD/ADHD. After trying this product for a month, I even believe adults can benefit (the flash exercise widens eye span so you can read faster – I’m a great reader – but a slow reader).
When I discovered all of this while working on the Edublox review I was really excited. After all, what parent doesn’t want their kids to improve their concentration, their reasoning, and/or their reading, math, skills? AND….as I just mentioned, I’d like to read a little faster!
Before I start my actual review, you might want to check out the video below (I like giving company info before I start on the specifics about what I/our family likes).
And these are the two programs we tried:
My son tried Development Tutor – and my daughter, the reading program.
Reading Tutor is in two parts; first the learner completes the cognitive exercises (Development Tutor) and then advances to the reading and spelling exercises. Even if a student is cognitively strong, the exercises adjust to his/her level over a very short period of time – within one to a few sessions – and then start challenging the student to proceed to a higher level. To test where a student’s current cognitive abilities are happens from the bottom up, not the top down, or one might demotivate the student.
Writing and Math Tutor programs are coming soon. I’m pretty excited about this –I’m especially excited about the math program!
Edublox Review – Not sure which product you need?
Edublox Online Tutor has an Online Assessment (one free assessment per student) that helps you identify problem areas and assess your child’s current reading ability.
Four cognitive skills are included in the assessment, giving a clear indication of which Edublox Online Tutor product suits your child’s needs. The four cognitive skills include:
- Visual sequential memory – sequencing refers to our ability to perceive items in a specific order, and to remember that sequence – e.g. months of the year, a telephone number, the alphabet, etc.
- Auditory memory – auditory memory involves being able to take information that is presented verbally, to process that information, store it in one’s mind and then recall what one has heard. Basically, it involves the skills of attending, listening, processing, storing and recalling. I am horrible at remembering someone’s name. I was hoping this would maybe help that. But I did the Auditory Arrows exercises and scored well – I guess I still have to figure out why I have trouble remembering names.
- Eye span – by increasing the learner’s eye span, the number of fixations, the duration of the fixations and regressive movements can be reduced, leading to faster and smoother reading. Clearly, I need help in this department. I found the eye span flash exercises to be the most difficult.
- Logical thinking – logical thinking is the process in which one uses reasoning consistently to come to a conclusion and is a foundational skill of reading comprehension.
The assessment is short – but it is a bit intense (your kids really have to concentrate and not be distracted). Same with the daily exercises – kids really need to concentrate. Just do one session of exercises per student per day. If you try to fit in two, I think you’ll get diminishing returns on the second set of exercises. We took a break between the exercises and our homeschool day.
What are the exercises like? I’ll mention a few of them below.
The Flash Exercise – Colored boxes are flashed on the screen and removed quickly. You have to then put them in the correct order. You’re advised not to scan blocks from L-R, but to look at the middle. For some reason, this is just tough! This exercise widens eye span so you can read faster.
The Block Pattern Exercise – Blocks are shown in a grid, then some are removed – you have to put the removed ones back in the same spot (same color/same spot). This improves mathematical abilities.
Auditory Arrows Exercise – This exercise gives you arrow instructions (up, down, right, left), and you must duplicate the instructions – this exercise improves listening skills. For my kids (and myself), this was the easiest exercise.
Sequence Exercise – see below – can you remember the sequence?
Edublox Review – What do I like about Edublox Online Tutor?
- The company is founded on pedagogical research and 30+ years’ of experience – that gave me confidence to try them out.
- It works! My daughter’s concentration has definitely improved and my son’s reading ability has improved as well. I’m very impressed!
- And FYI – annually, since 2010, Edublox clients have been asked to complete an online survey. In the last survey parents were asked, “Did your child’s academic performance improve?” and 94% answered positively!
- It works for different learning styles (I have an auditory and a visual learner).
- Edublox instills a positive attitude towards learning. The message is clear – Having difficulty? These exercises will help.
- Kids can choose their avatar (my son is a watermelon and my daughter a worm). I do like how it’s personalized (this is a screenshot from the very beginning, so my son hadn’t earned coins yet) –
- Kids can earn EduCoins to purchase online creatures – this is rewarding.
- There is a “map” for every lesson – so you kind of know how many exercises are left to do.
- Every exercise starts with a demo video – you can choose to watch or skip the demo. We watch every one – as there were numerous exercises and I don’t want my kids to get confused as to which one they’re starting.
- The website assesses and tracks learners’ development, and progresses them to the next level only when a set standard has been reached.
- The program provides good feedback for students. Learners receive constructive and encouraging feedback as they progress – which helps keep them motivated. I think the woman’s voice is soothing and re-assuring.)
This screen shot is from early on in the program – my son had just started – you can see he did well in shapes!
- Edublox gives good feedback for parents too – you definitely know how your kids are doing.
- Children (and their parents) can work at their own pace in the comfort of their own home.
- The website offers great support – support services are provided via e-mail with a 48-hour maximum response time. For more complex issues, the team is happy to engage directly via Skype. Also, I had difficulty one day switching students – and was able to handle this with an online dialogue – no wait at all!
- Subscription/payment options are available – options are always a plus. The different payment options include monthly, quarterly (10% discount), bi-annually (15% discount) & annually (20% discount).
- The website offers a 30 day money back guarantee – another plus.
My son’s progress after the first week
My daughter’s progress after the first week
What didn’t I like?
Let me preface with – these are all really minor complaints – the program itself is great.
- As with all computer programs – sometimes there were glitches…or we couldn’t move faster through a lesson when we wanted to. (BTW – I do understand why you can’t hurry through a lesson – it’s probably better that you can’t. So, maybe I shouldn’t even be mentioning this…)
- If you hit an incorrect key by mistake – often, the program sees it as an error – and you don’t have an opportunity to change your answer.
- The auditory exercise demo was at normal volume, the exercise much quieter. This means you really have to listen closely – and maybe our laptop volume isn’t the best – but you really have to listen!
- Logical thinking exercises are hard when you can’t see the entire string of boxes. I get it – this makes it more difficult – but smaller boxes – so you can see them all at once might be nice.
(Gosh, I feel like I’m nitpicking! I understand the reasons behind everything I’m mentioning here.)
- Not an issue – but just so you know – you may experience some problems using Edublox Online Tutor on tablets, Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge, as the program is currently not optimized on these platforms. For an optimal experience, use Google Chrome on a PC or laptop. (I used Firefox and it was fine). Their developers are working to complete the cross-platform design phase.
In conclusion, we really loved working on this Edublox review.
As mentioned previously – the Edublox multi-sensory exercises help students improve their concentration, processing, memory and reasoning skills – plus the exercises help improve students’ performance in reading, spelling, writing, and math. Given that – why wouldn’t you want to give this a try? We hope you enjoyed this Edublox review!