While none of my children have been formally diagnosed with dyslexia, our review from Dyslexia Gold (affiliate link) came at a good time for us. With the school year winding down, I wanted to be able to assign work that can be done quickly, but that really packs a punch. This program fits the bill nicely.
We received a family license of the Dyslexia Gold Full Bundle (affiliate link) for my 4 sons. I quickly realized that my 4 year old was not advanced enough to use the program, so my older 3 sons used it. We will try it again with him once he has a little bit better fine motor skills and can read a little.
I had my 12 year old son work on the Spelling Tutor program. My 9 year old has been putting time into the Times Table Tutor. Finally, my 7 year old has been using both the Engaging Eyes program (which uses the cutest little 3D glasses!), as well as Fluency Builder.
In a regular school year, I would love to have at least my oldest son complete the entire program several times a week. When used together, it helps dyslexic students, or others who are struggling, to succeed better in many school subjects by approaching it the way that the program introduces and practices information. It truly trains students to think a certain way, track things with their eyes a certain way, and to practice skills so that they stay sharp and the student can learn to be more focused and consistent over time.
My 12 year old is not an intuitive speller at all. I suspect he made have dyslexia or something else going on. We have testing scheduled for this weekend, but until then, we’ve been using the spelling program from Dyslexia Gold with him, called simply Spelling Tutor.
I love that there is audio with the lessons. Instead of just playing some game on the computer, students grab a pencil and a sheet of paper to actually write out the spelling words. The program says it to them in many different ways, such as the example below where it is written in a sentence and verbalized to them.
He wrote his answer on his paper and when he was done, clicked “Mark”. The program then asks, “Did you spell the word correctly?” and has the student look at the correct spelling and mark a green check if they got it right on their paper, or a red X if they did not.
I like that this lets the students check their own work, but it also makes them report it to the program.
In addition to using that format for spelling words, they were also read sentences that must be copied down on the paper. It had a similar format in that once the student is done writing, it asks them to check how they wrote it for correctness and errors. They can mark errors individually before moving on.
My son told me that his favorite part about this program is that the lessons are fairly quick, so he’s not spending a ton of time on spelling each day.
This definitely doesn’t come easy for him, but I love that it is a structured program that teaches 1,000 common words in a structured, predictable, and systematic way. That’s the best way for Michael to do spelling and it only takes about 10 minutes each time.
Times Table Tutor
My 9 year old is finishing up third grade right now, so I knew that Times Table Tutor would be perfect for him. Our regular math curriculum doesn’t do a lot of drilling math facts, so I was excited to see how Heath would be able to use this program for a few minutes, several times a week, to help him to remember these simple multiplication facts all the way to 12 x 12.
It starts with some simple facts where it gives the multiplication problem and the student clicks on the correct answer. The stars on the side indicate how many have been finished and the unshaded ones are the problems left to complete.
After that style of questioning, the students will practice the same types of problems, but they type in the answers.
The next part of Times Table Tutor has the students build the math sentences by dragging and dropping the correct numbers and signs. I like this because it helps them to practice “showing their work” for word problems.
This has been a great math supplement for Heath, and I’m glad he’s had a chance to work on it for the past several weeks. It’s so quick, and it’s working on important skills that will keep him sharp for the next level of math that he will begin next month in his regular curriculum.
Engaging Eyes is a program that is meant to act as a vision trainer. Students learn to track across the page (or screen, in this case), focusing both eyes on the same letter at the same time. Please note that the FAQ section of their website states that it is NOT for people with strabismus (commonly referred to as cross-eyed).
Charlie thought it was pretty cool that he was allowed to wear 3D glasses several times a week as he did the lessons.
He did get frustrated with the game because he didn’t understand the purpose of it. I had to convince him to keep on going, because it would help him in his reading off of screens when he got pretty good at Engaging Eyes. Learning the game was easy enough, but unlike the other programs from Dyslexia Gold, the relevance of it wasn’t really apparent to my kids!
The original game has him shooting at targets. He prefers the Whack an Alien game, though! With both games, earning points and gold stars has been very motivating for him.
I have noticed that Charlie’s actual reading has been better lately, so I do feel like it is helping. Before starting Dyslexia Gold, when I would have him read a passage each day from his language arts book, he had a hard time keeping track of which line of text he was on, or which word. Since beginning Engaging Eyes, he has honestly stopped doing that and gets right down to business. I would normally chalk that up to a maturity thing, but this has been since April, so it’s just been a short time span and he has made great strides.
His reading has also become smoother and more confident. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that these changes began happening after he had been working on Engaging Eyes and the next program, Fluency Builder, for a few weeks.
The Fluency Builder is an excellent way to help students hear the individual sounds in words. In the example below, students listen and react on the screen. The first picture shows an exercise where the computer says a sound, and they click on the picture that represents the same sound. Charlie was to decide if the word had the ‘ou’ sound as in mouse or the ‘oa’ sound as in goat.
On the next exercise, the computer read words aloud and encourage the students to read the words out loud as well. You can speed up or slow down the pace of the reading. By the last 2 lines, the computer just highlights the words and doesn’t say it out loud anymore, but still expects the student to be vocalizing each word. I love this extra reading practice and how it grouped together similar sounding words. This is also helping with his spelling by being exposed to so many words using the same letter pairings.
I love the exercise where the student is supposed to spell out words with different letter and letter pair tiles. I thought it would be difficult, but Charlie has really surprised me with how well he has done here.
There is another exercise called “Swapping Letters” that uses exactly the same format, but instead of doing a new word with a new set of letters, students are asked to change one word into another by choosing and moving letter tiles.
For example, changing pounce to bounce by placing a B in the space where the P started out.
I like that students can keep track of their lesson progress by looking at the top of the screen at the little bubbles to see how far they’ve come and how much they have left to do. As with the other Dyslexia Gold programs, lessons are brief, just a few minutes each day.
At the end, they get a Results screen and it shows them how they scored on each of the exercises in the Fluency Builder program. Charlie was especially proud the day I took this picture, because he told me this was his highest scoring day ever! I’m so proud of him. There are a total of 50 lessons, and I admit, I’ll be sad when he finishes them all because I really love this program.
Each child’s account has a section with a brief report on how they are doing. It tells you where they are at, and how far they have come.
I love checking out these kinds of statistics about my kids, because we don’t do a lot of testing in our regular curricula.
As you can see below, Charlie’s reading speed has improved dramatically in just a month and a half! I’m also so excited to see his reading age as a year older than his true age, and I’m looking forward to seeing how it ranks when it scores him again on July 13th.
We have been using these programs as a supplement for my boys for the past few weeks. I hope to place my oldest son in all of the programs beginning in the fall, as I do feel that he may have more of a need for this style of practice and skill building. It is very orderly and brief, both of which help him to learn so much better.
I will continue with using the individual programs as supplements for my younger sons until they finish the programs! We are all really enjoying them.
I recommend Dyslexia Gold to others with children that could use a program like this, especially if their kids are dyslexic. Once your child tries it out, you’ll see just how quickly that lightbulb goes off and the information starts to click. Dyslexia Gold can be used for students ages 5 and up, and even adults can benefit from the programs, especially Engaging Eyes.
Several other children had the chance to utilize the full range of Dyslexia Gold products during the review period. Click the banner below to see how they were able to fit it into their home schools.