Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of Math Shed and Spelling Shed through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Our family has been blessed with access to both Math Shed and Spelling Shed for 12 months – https://www.edshed.com/en-us. This is an online program, which we use on both our computer and iPads. It is designed for multiple children, and therefore it’s no surprise that it’s used in both classrooms and homeschool environments.
Math Shed gives your child the following category options to work on:
- Number Bonds
- Times Tables
- Powers of 10
- Subtraction and More
Within each category there are multiple options your child may choose, as well as difficulty levels.
Spelling Shed focuses on fun spelling tests, which are divided by Stages (basically Grades 1-2, 3 and 4-5). The main game involves practicing spellings, but there are bonus games too, such as Bee Keeper and Missing Word. Bee Keeper is essentially the game of Hangman, but for bees. There is also a Hive game, which is designed when multiple children are involved.
On the main screen you’ll find an extra bonus game for any level called Buzz Words. This is where your child makes as many words as they can from the letters given.
Throughout the program each child is given a choice of difficulty for their games. This determines the number of honey pots they will receive for their correct answers. The honey pots then act as a currency for items such as upgrading their individual avatars.
However, as a parent you have a lot of control over what your child sees via assignments on the Teacher Dashboard. So, instead of seeing the different Stage options on their Spelling Shed main screen, the child will instead have their own personalized game of words you have chosen for them.
I should note that you don’t have to customize the child’s main screen. I didn’t do this at the beginning as I wanted to see how the system worked first by allowing them to start ‘playing’ straight away. Nevertheless, with personalizing the lists I saw better results as it was no longer overwhelming for my children with too many new words to learn to spell at each sitting.
I highly recommend that you watch the training video. This gives details of the whole system and how you can use it for your family or classroom. This is when you’ll quickly understand the power of this online program. Before I watched the video I stumbled through setting up my ‘students’ with their own accounts, but it was still easy enough to do.
Once you have set everything up the way you want e.g. student accounts and any personalized spelling lists you want, your children/students can then log into their own account on their chosen electronic device and begin.
Now that they have started you can check the overall progress of your children, change or add more lists and assignments for them, as well as review leader boards of your top spellers and mathstronauts.
What’s more, is within your teacher’s account you can also look at each student in much greater detail. For example, you can see what your child has spent their honey pots on in their shop. You can also reward them with extra honey pots or even fine them accordingly.
At the top of the page there is also an overview. It is provided so you can see their shed score, highest score and total score for both spelling and math. I found this interesting, and used it as a guide to see where my girls were spending more of their time.
You’ll also have access to detailed progress reports via separate tabs for Spelling Shed and Math Shed. These tabs are where you can view the words your child has spelled over the last 7 days, and if they got one wrong how they spelled it instead. This is very handy when you want to create your own personalized spelling list for them. Every child will have different words in which they struggle.
On this page you’ll also find a competence graph and a list of their history i.e. the daily results, levels they chose, % and scores achieved.
My girls really enjoyed independently playing a game to learn how to both spell words and practice math operations. Both systems (Math Shed & Spell Shed) encourage accuracy, speed and independence. It’s a powerful system that provides lots of practice.
I’m not a fan of leaving children to electronic devices, but both these programs are very good at grabbing a child’s attention as well as being very educational. Math Shed and Spelling Shed bring practice drills alive which typically is not the case. This is easily something that your children could do for a few minutes everyday and you’ll quickly see great improvement in their skill levels.
I initially found it unclear where each child should start, but that became clearer after watching the training video. Also, once I took a look inside my teacher’s hub, reviewed the words, set assignments and then took a look at the reports for each child, I was more confident they were getting the most out of the program.
It’s wonderful to watch the excitement my girls have when they make a better score or received extra honey pots than they were expecting. I even caught my oldest setting herself extra goals, such as getting a certain number of answers correct within the time period.
The is a very powerful system, but to make the most of it you do need to put in some effort. However, it’s worth it as you’ll then know exactly what each child is learning and even struggling to get right. The Teacher Dashboard is very comprehensive and it’s great for supporting multiple children.
Other families reviewed the Spelling Shed and/or Math Shed online programs, which you can take a look at here:
The company is also found via social media here:
Hi there, we’re Micheal & Katherine!
We’re passionate about helping families strive for health and wellness, and living a non-toxic lifestyle. To us this also means homeschooling, choosing joy, exploring, making everyday count, and doing our research. We know it’s not an easy journey, but we’re doing our best and trying to make the right choices for our family.