Teach your child with multimedia

Why not? There myriad of options available! However, if you are worrying for early TV/computer exposure?

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Power Point Presentations
Special Computer Programs
Websites
DVDs
Toys

If you are looking for multimedia solutions for teaching Spanish, read more in Teaching Spanish: resources.


Power Point Presentations

The links to files and further resources are available in the Jump Start Teaching Your Baby To Read description of Glenn Doman’s method


Special Computer Programs

For initial Math operations – quantities, simple ision, multiplication, subtraction and addition operations I used the plugin into Power Point by Matt Hudson. It also allows to randomize the existing presentations, even if they contain pairs (word on one slide, picture on the next). See more information on Matt Hudson’s randomizer and other randomizing options: Randomizers for PowerPoint – problems resolved!

Once we got to three-four member equations, someone recommended the following program:

Geenogee Prodigy Reader – Prodigy Math CD
I’ve tried the Math section of this CD, the equations. Looks good. You can find more information about it at the seller’s site and there is a video about a cd. They don’t have any information about math component at their site, but math is included to the same cd. I liked that it was actually counting the number of times to show the lessonnette per day for each user that you enter: pretty neat. Unfortunately it doesn’t have inequalities (4+1 not equals 6+8), so we’d have to go back to cards for that.
I was not really happy with their “Reading” program: I find the text too small and the options too limiting. I didn’t find a way to customize their list of words and really wish I could insert pictures. May be I just didn’t spend enough time with the program. My son was completely turned off by flashing small words, so to get his attention, I just started creating my own lists of words in Power Point, with sound effects and loud pronunciation of every word (you can download them in our Jump Start Teaching To Read article). Now he is really excited about English words again!

Little Reader by BrillKids.
I haven’t tried this program but I’ve heard lots of wonderful comments about it. Their site says: “Little Reader is a flash card program for parents and educators who wish to teach children to read in an easy, powerful and efficient way.” Apparently, they have a database of images, you can customize your wordlists, create new presentation sets and even teach multiple languages with it. It seems that you can use it similarly to PowerPoint presentations, but you already have “templates” and some word lists preloaded. I already have so many PowerPoint presentations, and there are much more of them available online, while the circle of people using this software and sharing their presentations is quite limited, so I didn’t see the need to spend money on another software, but if you are considering something anyway, it is definitely worth checking out!

Rosetta Stone Software is the most highly recommended by other parents and by Doman’s institutes program for learning other languages. I am totally in love with it. The vocabulary and simple phrases come naturally, are easy to remember, and fun to learn! I still feel that I need some simple grammar book, since grammar rules elude and mystify me with just sentences. Still, this program is the best thing I’ve seen.

Spanish language ebook by Patricia Parten: I don’t know anybody who has used it already, so if you have any comments, please share!


Websites

For web sites where you can get more power point presentations or other similar resources go to Jump Start Teching Your Baby To Read article. Below you can find a list of sites where you child can click himslef, enjoying the internet based learning experience:

  • Fun To Be Smart: a remarkable site full of wonderful projects for kids, book, dvd and other recommendations, various scientific information
  • Learn to Read – Starfall: absolutely terrific site that kids can navigate themselves getting familiar with letters, words, enjoying memory games, etc.
  • Science with me : after Starfall – this is our next favorite site. It contains tons of little well done animations (cartoons) with songs and funny characters telling about circulation system, skeleton, steam engine. Free, but registration is required.
  • Brain Pop: cool animations for kids on various topics – art, science, English, math, health, social studies.
  • NY Public Library – Read Children’s books on line: lots of excellent stuff – english and spanish
  • Story Place: english and spanish stories and activities, interactive, read aloud cartoons.
  • Jason’s WL Reading: list of sites with story telling in different foreign languages
  • Palo Alto College Books Online: has text and audio – don’t know if it is fully interactive
  • Sesame Street Workshop
  • New York Philarmonic
  • NASA archive of online books
  • NASA kid glossary
  • Fun To Be Smart web sites recommendations
  • Nick news: news web site just for kids
  • Funbrain: Math, Grammar and other educational materials presented as fun games.
  • Ed Helper: this is more for parents, then for kids: design worksheets, games, and other printables to give kids the extra practice they need in spelling, math, or reading. Total access to the site is available at various pricing levels, but the free area. Activities can be designed for all ages: from pre-k to high school levels.
  • Kaboose: “has a long list of downloads in lots of different categories, including math, science, social studies, and music. Each list is also broken down by age group and operating system (Mac and PC). Several links point to Web sites that only contain printable PDFs and worksheets, but be sure to hunt around for downloadable software too.” (information provided by DownloadSquad)
  • The HomeSchool Mom: “a popular Web site among home educators has a mile-long list of free educational materials in every conceiveable subject from typing tutors to Forensic Medical studies. Some of the links are for Web-based activities but many take you to sites where you can download free software or send away to receive goodies in the mail.” (information provided by DownloadSquad)
  • Free Educational Podcasts: offered by Adam Smith Academy “you can download and listen to on an MP3 player or your computer’s media player. Younger children will enjoy stories from Kipling or Aesop, while older kids will love hearing stories by James Joyce or Nathaniel Hawthorne. The site even has a number of history lessons and college lectures available for download as well.” (information provided by DownloadSquad)
  • Exploratorium: “San Francisco’s famous science museum. Though much of the information is Web-based and interactive, there are plenty of links to other sites for additional printables and downloads.” (information provided by DownloadSquad)
  • Montessori material downloads: lots of wonderful free materials, “offers materials for all the curricular areas, including language, reading, math, art, music, science, history, and geography.”


DVDs

I personally haven’t tried many of these, since my baby doesn’t watch TV at all (at two he actually was still convinced that remote controls are cell phones), but others have recommended the following dvds:

Love and Learning vs Dr. Titzer

You can find my review of Your Baby Can Read DVD here: Your Baby Can Read! – DVD by Dr. Titzer.
Special thanks to Laurie Tiemens for comparing Love and Learning and Dr. Titzer dvd sets:

  • The LAL and Dr. Titzer methods are similar to Doman’s method with some differences. LAL and Titzer show the words for much longer and advocates showing them for a month or two before moving on to other words. Doman’s method is to show each word three times a day for five days and then only use it in couplets, phrases, or sentences. With the Doman method your child gets to see *lots* more words and they are tailored to his/her interests. I believe that the Doman method offers the most possibilities.One side note about the Titzer videos: don’t think that just because your child goes all the way through all his videos that he/she will be reading like Dr. Titzer’s daughter did as a baby. Aleka Titzer saw many more words than are shown on the videos before she could read as she did as a three-year-old.The LAL series has lots and lots more words in it. I think it will get your child further in reading than the Titzer videos.Doman uses homemade flashcards so the cost would depend on how long you do the program.The LAL is much more expensive than the Titzer videos.Yes, the video programs are easier to start because you don’t need to prepare any materials.Quickest win? Hmmm. I think they’re about the same.Offers most lasting result? If you are comparing the Doman method in which you only show as many words as are shown on the videos then probably you will have the same result with all. But the beauty of the Doman method is that it is easy to show many, many more words than either of the other two programs. Many children (like my daughter) who are taught via the Doman method actually figure out phonics on their own. The thing I appreciate most about the Doman method is the way it has affected my daughter’s thinking abilities. She is very, very smart – definitely smarter than her 7 older siblings who did not get the benefit of a Doman program. She’s learned all kinds of stuff all on her own. She’s learned her address and phone number by herself without drill of any kind. She’s learned how to say 1-, 2-, 3-, and 4-digit numbers on her own without instruction. Lots more stuff like that.Hope that helps!

Monki See Monki Doo

  • From the original MonkiSee website:

    Monki See Monki Doo is a learning system designed to teach reading to small babies and toddlers. By using our playful DVD’s, flash cards, and/or books, your child will be well on their way to reading. Your child will laugh and play their way to literacy with Howie and Skip.

  • Comment update: Now that we have Dr. Titzer’s Teach Your Baby To Read, we rarely watch Monki See Monki Doo. Monki See doesn’t withstand the comparison very well. Even after numerous watching of Monki See, TYBTR swept us off our feet with video/footage quality, fantastic materials, flip-flap word books, etc. Even my five year old doesn’t mind when I occasionally put TYBTR on for the little on in the car. I don’t even recall when we had Monki See on… Nevertheless, TYBTR is quite expensive. Monki see provides a decent alternative for the price. It is fairly good.This is my original review and opinion:
    This is a DVD actually designed and produced by one of the members of TeachYourBabyToRead group. I had lots of mixed feelings when I just got this DVD, expecting it to be non-professional type of videos that are usually coming out from home production… and I was very pleasantly surprised! This DVD turned out to be well made and I actually found it exceptionally good for the little ones! The initial DVD targets kids up 2 years old. It incorporated the good features of many other DVDs for the small babies: similarly to Baby Einsteins they have lots of baby’s favorite images – kids, animals, and even engaging scenes with cute puppets (my kid used to love them when he was smaller). But that’s not all! It has songs, it has poems, it even has little animations! This video actually does what it promises: it helps you to get started with a reading program with kids – it shows 40 introductory words, that are common in baby’s everyday vocabulary.What I absolutely loved was that the words are not animated, like in LeapFrog, they don’t have any distracting shadows and backgrounds, images on the words themselves… it is just so Doman to show large red words and to read it loud and clear. The words are followed by a small demonstration: kids pointing to the body parts, or an animal (if the word was an animal), or a puppet show.What I loved the most about the video is the amount of comments. My major complain about Baby Einstein videos is that they are mostly silent. On the rare occasions when I was showing Baby Einsteins to my son, I’d usually sit next to him and comment every image, every action, every animal. “Monki See” does that for you: it has plenty of good comments on actions and imagery, plenty of songs and poems that are read nicely and clearly, so mom’s work would really amount only to hugs for the baby who is watching it. My son’s reaction: he is almost three. He has outgrown it (unfortunately!). He was interested for the first part of the show, but he is watching a lot more advanced videos by now and this is for the little babies. So I just turned on the slide show of the words that is available at the end. He was glad to review the old words that he has seen before, and I was glad there was such a simple way to show just the words themselves! In all honesty, if I ever could do a DVD for my kid, that’s how I’d like to do it. I was so charmed that I’ll be definitely showing it to my number /#2 one who’ll hopefully join us soon and I’ll be looking forward for more videos from this series.

Italian Lyric Language DVD

  • Thanks to lmkonstantinou:
    My let my two year old watch the Italian Lyric Language DVD. I found
    this DVD to be fantastic because it is in both English and Italian
    and has the subtiltles on the bottom of the screen. We don’t speek
    Italian at home but by watch this for about a year now my daughter
    and I can read hundreds of Italian words and know there meanings.I am going to invest in getting all the languages DVD’s.
    Here is more of a description below:

The Complete Lyric Language® CD & DVD
French o German o Italian o Spanish

Penton’s dynamic live-action music video – with bilingual lyrics
subtitled on-screen.

Now available in this complete, 70-minute DVD format. Also includes
an audio CD with all 21 bilingual songs with a full color Lyric Book
in U-print format on DVD

U-print lyric Book is on the DVD

Baby Einstein: My First Sings, Baby Van Gogh, etc.

  • This DVD series is inevitably making it to every new baby gift list. We’ve got it as well. Is it really educational? See for yourself here: Baby Einstein Videos are harmful to kids?. My personal opinion is that they are not worth the time. We used to watch them – during long car rides I would sit next to my kid and narrate everything he sees, making sure it is not just a random array of images any more. So there are a few that we liked more: The First Sings and Baby Van Gogh. There are a few that we found too useless: e.g. Baby Bach. There are a few, that with my narration could be somewhat useful: Neighborhood animals, Wild Animals, Baby MacDonald, Baby Noah. Otherwise – why babies need any TV at all? We needed it for the long car rides, so (again, I can’t stress it enough) with my narration and for the lack of everything else, it was serving its purpose as a distraction. If you are looking for a good, really educational video that doesn’t have to involve YOU, check the other options from this list. Teach Your Baby To Read, Singing Times, even Leap Frogs I think would be much better. My son also loved the DVDs recommended at Fun To Be Smart.

Singing Time

  • Viviane, Isabelle,Christina & Michael Aziz:
    christina loves those 10 to 20 minutes in front of the tv watching signing time and your baby can read dvds
  • This collection of DVDs is the first one to be recommended every time the discussion on educational DVDs comes up. I haven’t bought it for my first one, but I’ll definitely consider it for my second one – I haven’t heard anything but raving reviews from everybody who used it.

Leap Frog DVDs

  • Leap Frog Phonics DVD
  • Leap Frog Letter Factory, Leap Frog Word Factory, Leap Frog Math, Leap Frog Storybook Factory: I am not sure if frequently recommended “phonics” are the same as these ones, but this collection is absolutely great. Once my own son discovered the true meaning of the big black box taking so much space at the wall, this series became one of his favorites. He is singing their “letter” song, he seems absolutely charmed, just as our friend’s kids who have these disks. I guess it is not as dense in material as DVDs above that teaching kids reading and showing whole words, but highly amusing. I wish they sometimes just flashed the resulting word, sound, etc. in less animated way, so that it is easier to recognize the word as a “cat” or a “hat”, rather then presenting a very cute set of letters with eyes, noses, and animated movements, but I like that some phonics are introduced in such fun way without any special effort on my part.
  • Thanks to Tamsyn for sharing: I recently purchased this and my little one loves these videos so I thought I’d recommend them. My Mom bought these on VHS 10 years ago and it helped my siblings learn to read. The pros are they have great voice talents and they use real music (not digitalized) including classical music excepts. I even chose a song from these videos for my Jr recital at the University. The music is great. The other pro is the cost, 4 DVDs for $10. The cons are that it’s an older video and the animation reflects that. Also from the phonetic sense they teach that L says “la” and not just “l” by itself, which is contrary to how I’m teaching Peter his letters. But that’s a minute point. For the songs, they sing it once, then speak it once while showing the words and highlighting the word. Then they sing it with the text below. Then they sing it in the foreighn language it originated from, if applicable. I don’t get anything from this, I’m just a happy customer
    sharing what I found. The seller has a few of these.http://cgi.ebay.com/Rusty-percent26-Rosy-Early-Reading-Level-1-Kidpercent27s-4-DVD-Box-Set-_W0QQitemZ180341598108QQcmdZViewItem

DVDs that Teach Music

  • Trebellina: (Thanks to Musical Mommy) You should check out a music-teaching DVD for babies to learn to read music, pitch, and instrument names and sounds. It is called Trebellina. Anyone interested in early learning and music should know about it!
  • Classical Baby: The Music Show: It looks very cute: cuddly animals dance, play, move during classical pieces.Still, I wasn’t thrilled about it. This video is targeted for the babies: for kids under two years old. I am not a great fan of TV for babies. There are a lot of resources at this site pertaining to the lack of positive effects (or even harmful effect) of videos for very small children. I also think it lacks very important component: labeling what the baby is seeing. This DVD seems to have the same fault as BabyEinstein DVDS – there is action, but no description. The only way I can see this DVD have any value at all, is if parents sit with the baby, label all characters, their actions, etc. AND – composers. Every musical piece lists composer on the screen… but nobody reads his name loud. Why not? “Baby Steps”?! This is Nutcracker suit by Tchaikovsky! To the baby both phrases are equally meaningless in the beginning. So if you’ll say “baby steps”, that’s what he’ll learn. If you say the full name – THAT’S what the baby will learn!There is a mode that actually shows the names of the pieces, names of the composers and their birth/death years. That information is also silent – the parent is needed to read it. No other information is available.I am sure the babies would be entertained by the jumping teddy bears, baby folding the puzzle, etc. I haven’t met a baby who wasn’t fascinated with the moving images on TV. Listening to the Classical Music is very beneficial for them too.

    But honestly, with all the negative effects from TV, I think that putting the classical CD at the background, while baby is playing in his baby-gym, or crawling around the room, or even sucking on his thumb – is going to be a LOT more beneficial to his development, then watching this DVD.