Information Overload – Need a virtual tutor

Spent a few minutes with Google looking for a decent app or website we can direct our kids to for working on the skills and concepts being introduced in the classroom. We are open to a subscription service, but don’t want to commit without some endorsement or referral from a trusted PDDer. Sure, there is plenty out there for free, but weeding through advertisements and such makes it complicated and cumbersome at times – we’d also like to track progress. Any of you using anything you can recommend? Specifically looking for math, spelling and phonics for the K-5 audience.



about 10 years ago

Our kids came home from school with the idea to play Sumdog - math interactive learning site. 

Once upon a time our 5th grader really hated practicing spelling. It was a direct conflict any time she got a word wrong. I got sick of it and for that year (first grade) entered the words into an online tutor.

Your mileage may vary. But both are free.


about 10 years ago

Khan Academy is fantastic for math, and there are other subjects that they are adding, too. It is aimed for a little older than K-5. The site seems to start at 3rd grade math, but they do have lessons for simple arithmetic that a student encounters before 3rd grade. The lessons and practice is really good (I used it for myself for higher math).


about 10 years ago

I subscribed to IXL Math and English for a year. Accounts for two kids cost $100 for the year. You can try samples on the website. The drawback I saw was the site's reward system. If the kid made one mistake, they'd be back to needing 5 in a row correct (or whatever) to earn their "sticker." That part got frustrating, even though I the kids getting 90%, 80% right was OK. But they wanted to earn the reward, and sometimes that was too hard.


about 10 years ago

+1 for Khan Academy. Our kiddo was doing it pre-3rd grade. I suggest doing your own learning side by side with your children. Model, don't meddle. ;) -- BTW, get them coding asap! We use scratch from MIT ... it's awesome, fun and even adults can do it.


about 10 years ago

One recommended and used at some local schools for basic math facts is, and it is free. It is for practicing basic addition tables and similar. is a free reading/phonics site, also used at some local schools for pre-K through 1st grades. is another good one that is free and it covers math, language arts, and computer skills.

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