We are a reading Family, there isn't a book we couldn't curl up with and read on any given lazy weekend. I have been blessed to have Kiddos that enjoy reading and I've never had to struggle teaching them or getting them to do it. Kaden read at the early age of 3 all by himself....I still don't understand how he did it. :) So, when I first heard about MaxScholar and Reviewing their MaxScholar Reading Intervention Programs...I figured it was not for us. My Kiddos don't need an "intervention" when it comes to reading....Math, is a different story...we need all the help we can get. :) But, since we are a reading Family I looked into this company a little bit more and I realized this was not just for Kiddos who can't read or who struggle. This offered away for Kiddos with all learning styles to better their reading skills, comprehension and knowledge. I was floored at the teaching style, what all was covered and how it would be a chance to strengthen what Kaden already knows how to do, so I decided this is a product I have to Review. I'll try to explain a little better down below.
So, first I'll tell you that we received a 1 year subscription to MaxGuru which included a ton of things:
I was so excited at first because I saw a plethora of opportunity for Kaden to Read some great literature or articles. I was super stoked for the Bios and Places section. It's hard to keep his library filled because he reads so much. There was the promise of games and activities...we were so excited to get started.
Once we logged on using Chrome he was off to take his placement test. Since he is a reader he is particular on what he reads. It's his time he says, if it's not worth his time he refuses to read it. I can respect that. And once he was placed and we started poking around I found that maybe my expectations were a little on the HIGH side......and we were about to be disappointed. Kaden went straight to the MaxBios and was instantly disappointed by the selection of people he had to choose from. But, we decided to go through what we could. I wish that I had the ability to customize what he saw. Kaden has Autism and following the rules is extremely important to him and he is strict on himself. We Only listen to Christian Music and found some of the MaxBios and MaxMusic offensive and not age appropriate. This is a child who will not watch anything PG13 at all. Not even PG if we are not with him because in stands for Parental Guidance, so if we are not there to supervise even a movie we have all seen he will not watch it. If there was a way for me to eliminate certain Artists or People from his list that would have made us both very happy!!!
As for the MaxPlaces we had high hopes and for the most part I think it's fantastic and cool to locate different places on the map and then learn about them. But, Kaden felt like it was way bellow grade level...very elementary. I was kind of confused and thought maybe as he progressed in the program the material would get harder. We didn't find that to be true, but maybe as you get through the grade levels it would increase the difficulty.
In the MaxWords section he was able to learn Spelling Rules, most I had NEVER taught him. So, it was new information for him....so he loved it. He was able to touch on the Latin and Greek roots section. This also was new and a challenge so he enjoyed working through it. He will definitely continue using the MaxWords section for sure. Kaden's other FAVORITE was the MaxVocab portion. Where do I begin....he fell in LOVE with the Dictionary section. If you have a child on the Spectrum and they need input all the time.....hook them up to this!!! I'm not kidding, he will scroll through and go through each level and read out each word, the definition, synonym, antonym and put it in a sentence. Did I say over and over again he would do this? Well, he did over and over. I finally got him to try the games section, but it kept glitching on him which just made him frustrated and then he would stop. So, I encouraged him to do the parts that he Loved about the MaxGuru.
So, what did I think about this program? Well, first off I have to tell you if you do not like Rap music and Miley Cyrus this may not be for you right off the bat. Because there are lyrics to this type of music and the MaxBios have all kinds of colorful people to pick from. It's not all bad, there are some really Amazing people to choose from too. The reading portion wasn't challenging enough for Kaden. But, like I said maybe he didn't do as well on the placement test. He never really did well with the highlighting portion, because his motor skills is something we have to work on daily. He did test at a 6th grade level, but our personal Psychologist tested him at an 11th grade reading comprehension. And this may be why he felt it wasn't written well.
He did like the MaxMusic with Guidance with me, he felt like some of the content was not appropriate. And he Loved the MaxWords and Vocab sections. Would we use this after our year is up. No, we will continue our love/hate relationship through the Summer time while we are on our RV trip....because it will keep him busy while we drive and he can look through the MaxWords and Vocab section. But, because of the lack of control I have on what he is exposed to I will not be continuing. If you have Kiddos that are older and listen to that kind of Music you may enjoy it. If you feel that the placement is not accurate call them. They have great Customer Service. Make sure you head over and see what MaxScholar have going on with Social Media!!!