We’ve enjoyed a resource called IXL Learning for many years, so we were happy to review it this school year with my oldest 3 kids, grades 3, 6, and 8.
I received an annual online membership for my 3 oldest children to IXL, which includes the following subjects:
Math – For the math, it includes pre-k through 8th grade, but also includes Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2, Precalculus, and Calculus.
Language Arts – pre-k through 12th grades
Science – grades 2-8
Social Studies – grades 2-8
Introductory Spanish – The Spanish practice area includes information divided into 7 units of study and includes grammar, vocabulary, and using Spanish in context.
We use the program as a supplement to our homeschool, and I’ve been assigning my kids to complete one skill per day. They love that it’s quick and simple. I love that it gives immediate feedback on whether they answer a question correctly or not. If they do not answer it correctly, they receive a mini-lesson explaining the concept a bit and hot to arrive at the correct answer.
I like that I can look at their Analytics to see what they are doing, how they are scoring, how long they are spending on the program, and how many skills they have been working on. You can break it down by day, by subject, by the skill grades, or the date range. In addition to usage stats, you can look at diagnostic information, view their trouble spots, their scores, the questions, and monitor their progress in the program.
I’ve been letting my kids choose any skill to work on during their school day, and they are to work on it until they master it. My kids seem to be mostly choosing math topics and skills, but there are so many other subjects. I hope to use this program during the summer to help them to continue practicing skills they’ve worked on throughout the year without the bulk of a full curriculum year-round. I think it will work well for us for these purposes, because they program is simple to use and is divided into so many smaller, bite-sized chunks to work on that it isn’t overwhelming all at once.
Another thing we like is that the kids earn “stickers” and “awards” for different things. Some of them are based on how many questions they answer, some are based on how many or which skills they master, and others are based on times or days that they practice on IXL. These are colorful, fun ways for a student to feel like they’re really moving along in the program! There is so much positive reinforcement built right in.
When a student logs in, they are able to choose from a variety of different subjects, topics, and skills. You can see the various grade levels on the left side, indicated by the numbers. The various subjects are listed along the top, and students can toggle between those easily to choose what they want to work on.
When they pick a skill, they begin to answer questions about it until the program verifies mastery of the skill they are working on. If they are correct, it will give a brief screen that says something like, “Awesome!” to let them know they got it right. As I mentioned, if they happen to get something wrong, the screen will then show how to get the correct answer and works almost like a mini lesson. I make my kids take a moment to really read over that correction screen so that they don’t make the same mistakes again later!
My daughter has been learning a few math concepts that haven’t been taught yet in her math program. She’s quickly learning through her mistakes, but is grasping the information well and enjoying the program.
My oldest son works a little slower because he’s more of a perfectionist, but he is noticing that he’s able to remember what he has learned. There have been a few times where he has told me that the IXL assignments reminded him of how to work certain math problems or what certain parts of speech are like. He likes how brief his IXL sessions are, but feels like he’s getting a lot out of them.
My 3rd grader has been choosing topics that are similar to what he’s working on in his regular school. He needs the extra reinforcement and I think he secretly likes that I’ve been assigning them to work on skills, because it gives him a few extra minutes a day to work on some trouble spots he has.
Once a student has mastered a skill, it will indicate it with a little medal next to it and a filled in set of bars next to it on the main selection page. I love this feature, because a student is easily able to see that they have completed that one and won’t keep accidentally choosing the same thing over and over.
The annual memberships are currently priced at $159 per student for the 4 core subjects. Adding Spanish is an additional $40 for the year. Adding additional students is just $40 each per year. They have other options available, as well, such as just having math and language arts or choosing single subjects. These cost a bit less per year, but the Core Subjects package is the best value.
I do recommend IXL as a good supplement to home education. It’s a great way to practice MANY different subjects, topics, and skills from pre-k through 12th grade. It helps jump-start further learning, assesses knowledge for things your student has already been taught, and helps fill in any gaps in their learning.
See what other families thought about IXL and see how they used it in their daily lessons by clicking on the banner below: