This week, I focused on instructional software. Due to this focus, I also took the opportunity to review a few websites as well. Using my evaluation rating guide (see link below), I was able to decipher if SuperKids and Education World were good websites. Both websites were focused on children; however, they were completely different.
SuperKids was a website that focused on educational reviews. It analyzed a variety of instructional software and how well they were for educational purposes. I took some time to look at many of the links, and was able to obtain a great deal of information. For example, Algebrator was a software program that that helped students with algebra. SuperKids used a rating scale from one to five to rate the educational value, kid appeal, and ease to use. By providing this type of rating scale, I was able to see that Algebrator was rated 4's on educational value and ease of use. This type of organization and "reader friendly" material helped me understand a little about this program even before I read the detailed review.
Overall, I thought this website was organized fairly well. It provided me with a great deal of information as well as some new apps to try on my iPad. The only thing that made me a little hesitant to use this website on a regular basis is the lack of authors. It was difficult to find the authors that wrote the reviews, so it is made the reviews a little unreliable for me. Also, I wasn't able to try out any of the software. Being that I'm a visual-kinesthetic learner, I like to try things out before I buy them.
The second website I evaluated was Education World. As an educator, I found this site to extremely valuable. It was organized very well with all the links at the top! I was immediately drawn to the Teachers link. This link has some great articles that I was able to take the time to read. Along with articles, Education World also provides lesson plans and printable student worksheets. As an educator, always looking to improve lesson plans, I found these links to be valuable. The lesson plans also contained standards and objectives, making this a site I know I can trust on for reliable material.
Along with lesson plans, Education World contained some of its own instructional software as well. Due to the lesson plans being reliable, I found it easy to trust the instructional software. I even took some time to play Penguin Waiter to practice my own math skills!!
Based on my evaluations, I recommend Education World to be the more reliable website. Although SuperKids seemed to have great deal of information, it was not as interactive as Education World. I like the ability to "interact" with the software before I give it to my own students. Based on my Evaluation, both websites seem to be good, but Education World gets my final vote!
Websites Evaluation Forms