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[ctt template=”4″ link=”0GrMa” via=”yes” ]My son, Mason, was given the first three months of a program for a PandaParents product review that he could use on the electronic tablet called MESSYLEARNING FOR PRESCHOOLERS AND KINDERGARTNERS.[/ctt]
PandaParents Product Review – Bridge The Early Learning Gap
What is MESSYLEARNING?
It sounds messy, right? Well, I found out that it's really not! It is an acronym. M is for Mixed subjects and activities for integrative learning. E is for Engaging activities that challenge minds. S is for Simple 1-2-3 steps: read, learn create. S is for Smart designs for creative learning. Y is for Yeah, a new way to promote preschool STEM and early brain growth!
PandaParents has a goal to “bridge the early learning gap” and they have done their research and found some great ways to help small children, ages 3 through 6, to learn.
You can click the image above to go to their website to see this image better, but basically it tells how each area helps in the learning process. Your child will not only enjoy hearing a story, but also can learn words, play games, answer questions, and problem solve while reading.
What does it include?
We received the first three months of the program. Each month include a pdf book that we could put on our electronic tablet. We have an iPad that we used it on. There are videos to watch online and a workbook with fun learning activities. We were given instructions how to download it and the passwords required and when I followed the instructions, I didn't have any problems getting it up and running, so I think it is very easy to implement. You can try it out with a free course.
How we used it:
So one of the blessings of homeschooling is that we can do school in any room of the house that we choose! We prefer the living room couch to read books and watch online videos on the iPad if there is only one student watching and the dining room table for paperwork or art projects, so that's where we were.
We would read the story first. I really liked that in the stories, phrases were repeated many times over, repetition really helps the learning process. At Mason's age, five, I like to keep his learning times to less than 30 minutes per subject. Sometimes, we would have to get onto another subject or take a break, so the story was all we could do that day. Then the next day, we would watch the video and they would show words on the screen along with the colorful illustrations. He really liked the preschool stories with pictures. Next, maybe on another day, it depends, we would do the activities from the on screen preschool workbooks. Some of the activities would be on the screen and we would talk about them or trace with a finger. We did choose to print some of them and do them at the dining room table. During the time of this review, I didn't have color ink, so you will see what printing in black and white looks like below. I did draw in a few things with pencil that did not show up printed.
How Mason did with it:
Mason is five years old and in the preschool learning stage for homeschool. He seemed to be a little antsy and distracted when I would read to him, but very engaged and actually sitting still when he could watch the story be read to him on the screen. Now is that because this program is so amazing or because he rarely gets to use the iPad for homeschool and it was a real treat to him? I am not 100% sure, but I personally thought the stories were very engaging and I really enjoyed the colorful pictures.
A brief description of a few stories:
A Jolly Jingling Journey
Santa meets a boy and his dog and together at the North Pole with some new friends, they help Santa Claus find his missing reindeer. There are some positive thinking examples in the story. The worksheets have patterns and counting for some math teaching as well as letters to learn.
Little Amanda says “woo-hoo” at bedtime and needs Mommy to tell a Mommy's Baby story. Her Mommy asks questions like, “Are you Mommy's little pillow?” etc. and Little Amanda responds. This one is very short compared to the Scotty Skunk story, that I will mention in a moment, and one would think that this would be more enjoyed by the younger end of the 3 to 6 age group for early brain development, but I was surprised to see that Mason was very engaged with it. The music is very nice when the story was read to him. My 19 month old toddler also enjoyed hearing this story and it made him giggle, which in turn made Mason giggle.
A longer description with photos of one of the stories:
Scotty Skunk Hears A Scary Sound
This is a longer story than the ones above. Scotty the Skunk was scared of many things that made loud sounds, like a train and a lawnmower. He would go on and try to find a new home that was less noisy. He was worried about being cold at night in the Fall, so he wanted to find a suitable home. As you are watching the video of this story being read, some of the words pop up on the screen near the illustration of what it is, like “home”. The story asks kids questions to get them thinking ahead, predicting or problem solving. One example of this is, “What scary sound will Scotty hear next?” The story has sound effects to make sounds like a tractor engine running. Throughout the story, Scotty the Skunk often says, “Loud noises scare me, it is time to find a new home, but where?” We learn that skunks should live inside a den or a log, but it gets us thinking, what if another skunk is already there? Also, the story teaches us we should not make loud sounds around skunks.
After hearing this story a few times, when Mason would hear a loud noise, he would exclaim, “Wow, that would be too scary for Scotty!” The first time, I was like, “Who's Scotty?” (I am rather forgetful now at age 44, I probably just need more sleep!) Then he reminded me about the story. I smiled, very happy that he was truly listening!
Mason liked the colorful pictures on the printable worksheet pages too.
I didn't have colored ink to print the colorful photos, but they turned out okay. In this letter “H” picture above, it should say, “H is for home” under the dot-to-dot.
For some pages, I just drew the missing colorful parts in pencil. Mason enjoys doing pages that have lines drawing from one thing to another and it gets him thinking and learning and able to comprehend the story better.
Mason likes to color. I showed him what to do on the above page by coloring in the first two squares for him, then he did the rest. There are lots of things you can do for workpages in this program.
I think it was cool, I liked the Scotty the Skunk story and using the tablet. I want to do it again.
Well, I have to admit, I am a frugal person because I have to be with nine people in the house and I was pleased that a subscription to this online program is only $9.95 per month. I do think that is reasonable for all the stories and activities and online learning you get. It has music, sound effects, a professional sounding story reader, colorful artwork, words that are close to the objects they represent on the screen, etc. It really is a good value for your child to learn those precious early reader skills. I also like that I don't have to run out and buy a color ink cartridge to make this program work when I want it to, because I do live 22 minutes away from that store, so it is not convenient to do that for a mommy who doesn't always plan ahead! I think your kids will really like it, and like Mason, may ask to do it again.
Where to find them:
- Website: http://pandaparents.com/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PandaParentsABC/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/Panda_Parents
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/pandaparents/
The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Review Crew has a great team of people who have also used and reviewed PandaParents so click the banner below to see all the reviews:
Thanks for stopping by! I look forward to sharing more great curriculum reviews throughout the coming year.
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