IXL Math and Language Arts {Schoolhouse Crew Review}

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A couple days ago, I shared a list of our favorite online resources that have saved my sanity this pregnancy. IXL has quickly become a staple in our home! We’ve been reviewing IXL Math and IXL Language Arts with Bug, and have seen awesome results.

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What is IXL

IXL is an online review program for math and language arts. There is content for math from preschool all the way to algebra 1 &2 , geometry, and pre-calculus. Language Arts is available for grades 2-8. When you get a subscription for your child, you have access to all the grade levels, so you can review material from past years, or choose content from across multiple grades. (Language Arts and Math are sold separately- see the end of the review for purchasing information)

This program is aligned to standards, so it’s pretty easy to match up the content with most math and language arts programs on the market. You can see the content both by grade and by subject for both math and language arts so even if your child is working across multiple grade levels, they will be able to find topics to work on.

How it Works

This is a review program. Within each grade level, there is a list of topics for your child to choose from. Each topic has dozens of questions for your child to answer. Questions are presented in a multiple choice format.

Question IXL

 

A sample language arts question

If your child gets it correct, fantastic! If they miss the question, IXL provides a basic explanation as to what the correct answer was, and how to solve it.

IXL Explaination

A sample explanation

It’s not a teaching program, so your child won’t get a lesson with this program before they get started, but so far, any confusion my kids have had with the questions is easily cleared up by the explanations.

Our Experience with Third Grade Language Arts and Math

Bug has been using this program on a regular basis, and I am loving it. Most of the time, I sign him into the program, and then set him to work on a specific topic. For example, if we reviewed subject and predicate in our language arts curriculum, I can choose to have him work on that same topic on IXL. I love that it is easy for me to find anything he needs to review on the program, and I can use this to reinforce our work.

Other times, I just signed him in and told him he could do anything as long as it was within the third grade level. The neat thing is that for Bug, this really is fun. He asks to use this program almost daily, and will happily “play” on it until I make him get off the computer. I think this is interesting, because it isn’t a flashy program- it doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles, and it isn’t a game.

What it does have is a very good built-in reward system. When your child is working on the questions, they can see at a glance how many they have answered, how long they have been working, and what their score is. Bug doesn’t want to stop playing until his smart score is high (he aims for 100) and he is always trying to earn new “badges” on the reward screen.

IXL Reward screen

Bug’s reward screen

The Language Arts program doesn’t have as many bells and whistles as the Math program does. Bug’s one bit of criticism is that he wishes he could earn the “badges” on language arts as well. The Language Arts program does do the same smart score counter, so that motivates him, but there is no reward screen with the little pictures to earn.

Final Thoughts

IXL works on the computer, and some tablet/mobile devices. We have a third generation iPad and were able to use the app, which is awesome for us since there is only one computer, and many people trying to use it. We didn’t run into any glitches on the computer or iPad, which is always nice with an online program.

One thing I really like about the program is the detailed reports and feedback it gives me. This pregnancy has been rough on me, so I can’t always be sitting over Bug’s shoulder to see what he is doing, and how well he is answering the questions. This program has multiple formats for reports, and it’s easy to see exactly what subjects have been practiced, and how well Bug is scoring on each of them. I like that I can see at a glance where he is struggling, so I can follow up with a lesson or more information to help me do better.

IXL Weekly Report
A snippet of a sample report

On this screen, I can click on the skill to take a look at the sample questions, and I can easily see what we need to work on more. You can also print reports to keep records for portfolios or what have you.

I feel like this program has really helped Bug retain information from his lessons. I love that I can send him to go practice more and it doesn’t really matter what we covered in our lessons, I can find something on IXL to reinforce the information.

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Pricing Information

Pricing for family memberships starts at just $9.95/month or $79/year for one subject. Each additional child costs $2/month or $20/year. For more information or to purchase a family membership, go to www.ixl.com/membership/family/pricing, and select your preferred membership option to view pricing details. An annual subscription for one child for math is $79; for math AND Language Arts, it would be $129.  For two children for math, it is $99 for the year; for math and language arts, it would be $149.

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