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      November 16, 2019

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Hooked On Phonics

Reading Eggs

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Kiz Phonics

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Kiz Phonics vs ABC Mouse

To help you find the Best Learn To Read Programs, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of Kiz Phonics and ABC Mouse.

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Help Your Child Learn To Read With Hooked On Phonics Today! What is the best way for someone to learn to read? There are many approaches to developing literacy in young children, struggling older readers, and even adults. Some education experts advocate the study of phonics, or the sounds that combine to make words, while others push for "whole language" methods that emphasize meaning over sounds.

The most current studies show that the best way to help people learn to read is by mixing both strategies, teaching students how to decode the way words are formed and spoken while encouraging increased comprehension of what's being read.

Continue reading below reviews

Best Reviews

2019

Learn To Read Reviews

4 stars
Kiz Phonics

KIZ PHONICS Visit Site

Cost:

$39 for 6 months (1 user)

$56 for 1 year (1 user)

$79 for 1 year (2-10 users)

$99 for 1 year (11-20 users)

You won't be shocked to learn that Kiz Phonics is a Learn to Read program that focuses on phonics. Although this program was designed for students learning English as a second or foreign language, we were pleasantly surprised to see that all of the instruction videos, descriptions and materials were in clear, native-speaker English.

The company is based in Hong Kong, however, so be prepared to make an international phone call if for any reason you want to speak with a customer representative. Kiz Phonics does have a representative location in Ireland, but you'll still be making a non-US phone call.

Kiz Phonics is best used with children ages 3-9. We recommend that you watch the intro video, to see how the platform incorporates the following elements:

  • Course Plan
  • Worksheets
  • Video Tutorials
  • Games
  • Listening Materials
  • Flashcards

The included worksheets and flashcards can easily be printed out and used whenever you like. If you want hard copies of the printable materials, you can buy book sets directly from Kiz Phonics. You can purchase them in sets, such as Pre-K and Kindergarten or 1st and 2nd grade; each set includes a 1-year membership to the online learning platform and sells for $174 to $179. You can also buy all 4 grade levels for $279, which comes with a 2-year online membership as well.

Otherwise, an online membership with Kiz Phonics costs $39 for 6 months or $56 for a year, when used with just one student. If you have more children that need to learn to read, you can get an expanded membership that includes up to 20 children; you'll pay $79 for 6 months or $99 for the year. This makes Kiz Phonics one of the most affordable Learn to Read programs on the market.

It's hard to tell if Kiz Phonics is updated regularly. We found a good number of fairly recent reviews from customers, but the site itself had a copyright date from one year ago, and the site archives dated back to 2014 with nothing more current. On the other hand, you can try out many of the activities and lessons offered with this program right on the website - no need to sign up for a free trial or enter your credit card information to access it. You'll see that the materials are well designed, attractive, and look much like what you'd expect to see in a children's workbook or school classroom.

Parents and teachers have good things to say about the results of using the Kiz Phonics program to help kids learn to read. We found many reviews that praised the system as effective and fun, especially for younger learners. And, because you get complimentary access to the first few lessons at each grade level, you can try it out with your own student before subscribing to the full program.

Although we typically prefer working with companies that have easy-to-access, US-based customer service representatives, Kiz Phonics still earns a high ranking because of their perks: many materials provided upfront with no commitment or sign-up necessary, extremely affordable pricing, and effective strategies for teaching children how to read.

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3 stars
ABC Mouse

ABC MOUSE Visit Site

Cost:

$9.95/month

First month free

ABC Mouse is an online educational program designed for children ages 2-8. The materials cover Reading, Math, Science, Art and Colors across 10 levels, with over 850 lessons and 9,000 learning activities.

If your priority is helping someone learn to read, we suggest that you review the Curriculum Overview for Reading. You'll find that link at the bottom of the page. There, you'll get more details about the ways that ABC Mouse targets the following Learn-to-Read foundational skills:

  • Learning Spoken Words
  • Recognizing Sounds in Words [Phonics]
  • Knowing Letter Names and Sounds
  • Sight Words
  • Understanding Stories and Books

ABC Mouse puts a lot of emphasis on Phonics. Under the site's Results and References tab, there's a wealth of information that explains the importance of Phonics to parents, including a webinar from a National Teacher of the Year award-winner, that could be really helpful in understanding how a child learns to read.

According to parents, one of the most motivating aspects of ABC Mouse is the Tickets and Rewards system. As children successfully complete learning activities, they earn virtual tickets that can be used to buy rewards in the online platform, like new items for their digital classroom or add-ons for their avatar. Many parents say that their kids ask to use the program all the time, specifically because they want to earn more tickets.

Parents appreciate ABC Mouse's Progress Tracking system. They can easily and quickly see exactly how their learners are doing, by subject and by academic level.

Pricing for ABC Mouse is straightforward: you'll get a free one-month trial, and then you'll pay $9.95/month thereafter. There are no contracts or long-term commitments. This subscription includes 1 parent account and up to 3 student accounts, making the program a bargain if you have more than one student that needs to learn to read. On the other hand, ABC Mouse doesn't have any satisfaction guarantee or refund policy, so you'll want to make sure you use the program thoroughly during your one-month free trial.

While ABC Mouse's parent company, Age of Learning, has an "A+" rating with the Better Business Bureau, we weren't happy to find so many complaints from customers who said that they were charged for subscriptions they didn't want. While some of those were very clearly situations where the users hadn't read the fine print or followed the required steps for cancelling, especially after the free trial, there were quite a few cases where the customers had followed the process to the letter and still wound up with charges - sometimes months after they thought they had successfully cancelled their subscription.

We also found more than a few comments saying that the Tracking and Rewards feature was glitchy, especially for app users. Some parents said that their children were in tears after working hard for new rewards that mysteriously disappeared.

ABC Mouse is probably best used by younger children; most of the reviews we found from happy customers had children who were 2 or 3 years old and were using the platform for advanced learning. The games and activities would probably be too "babyish" for children on the high end of their recommended spectrum of ages 2-8.

If you decide to give ABC Mouse a try, watch your credit card statements very closely, since the biggest issue users have with the program is related to billing.

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Continued from above

There are many online programs designed to teach these fundamental reading skills to learners of all ages. Of course, younger students have the most potential for rapid skill acquisition, because the human brain is amazingly flexible in the earlier years. Fortunately, hope is not lost for older students, who often have greater vocabulary and background knowledge compared with children and can use those language experiences to help them understand how the printed word works.

As you consider the various Learn to Read programs currently on the market, it's easy to get confused by all of the options. Here are several criteria to keep in mind as you choose the program that is right for your student:

  • Target Age. Is the program geared towards preschool, elementary, or middle school and beyond? You should select a program that isn't too advanced or "babyish", otherwise your learner won't feel engaged with the instruction.
  • Structure. How is the program formatted? Is it online and interactive, just on paper, or a mix of both? Do you have to progress through lessons in a certain amount of time, or can students go at their own pace?
  • Value. How much will it cost to access the Learn to Read program? What do you get for your investment, and is it a good value for your money?
  • Effectiveness / Reputation. What do other customers say about their experience using the program for learning to read? Does it work? Does the company have a good track record for customer service?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Learn to Read Programs available today. We hope this information will help your student get better at reading, in a way that is fun and effective, right away!

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