Samson’s Classroom {TOS review}

Samson’s Classroom is “software for young readers” and that is just what I have in Canyon. I really wanted to try this program because Canyon is an early reader. The target age for the program is for children in kindergarten through fifth grade and it focuses on three different areas of comprehension: Sight Words, Spelling and Reading. Through Samson’s Classroom, you are really gaining access to three different products (software programs) in one classroom.

We received a family membership, which gave us access to all three comprehension areas for up to four children. Students are introduced to Samson, who is an adorable dog (Lily thought he was cute). He works with the student in “his” classroom and assists him in three comprehension areas to help him master the skills through learning activities, which includes fun games and worksheets.

The activities in each section are taught in a progressive manner where children are presented the material and the skills they learn are built upon. This gives them an opportunity to review what they are learning through repetition and to incorporate new material to see how it all fits together.

Sight Words with Samson gives the child practice with sight words. The child is taken through a series of activities that includes more than 200 commonly used words found in the English language.

This is where we spent most of our time because of where Canyon is in his learning. The sight words section takes the student through five steps:

1) The word is presented and learned by the child.
2) The child spells the word using letters he chooses from the provided group of letters.

3) The child chooses the spoken word from a group of presented words.
4) The child practices spelling the missing spoken word in a sentence.

5) This is a fun one, where the student goes “fishing” for treasure. The treasure is the correct spelling word that completes the sentence.

In Spelling with Samson, the student has the opportunity to practice spelling words. There are more than 7000 words in the database that are customizable for your curriculum. Teachers are also able to create their own spelling lists in the program. There are fun games in this area, as there are in the other two sections.

In Reading with Samson, the student has the opportunity to practice reading comprehension. Just because a student is able to read does not guarantee he knows and/or understands what he has just read. Reading for comprehension is fun especially when you choose the right answer. Students are rewarded with carnival time.

Behind the scenes in the Scoreboard is quite helpful for the teachers. They can track the progress of the student and his usage. The progress of all of your students is easily tracked. Something that would be helpful is with the spelling words. I would like to be able to track what specific words my child may have difficulty in spelling. Since, I am sitting with Canyon now, maybe when he reaches that point, I will have to sit with him to obtain that information.

There are additional resources for teachers in the resource center to aid in instruction that include lesson plans, worksheets, certificates for student accomplishment and more.

Working with sight words was new for Canyon. He is learning to read phonetically, so quickly looking at a word and determining what it is was a bit of a challenge for him. I had to sit with him to work through this area. I believe that as he progresses in his learning that I will be able to move away from sitting at his side and he will be able to independently work through this section. For now, he was really only able to use Sight Words with Samson.

I like that the learning is not limited to computer use. Off-line activities that included worksheets and flashcards make this functional program away from the computer.

Watch the introductory video, which provides a walk-through of the program to see if Samson’s Classroom is right for your family. After that, take a run through a demo of the program, which will really give you an opportunity to experience what Samson’s Classroom has to offer.

Samson’s Classroom family membership is $50/year and allows up to four users. There are other pricing options available. See all of the pricing options.

You can read more reviews of this item by fellow crew members on The Homeschool Crew Blog.

Disclaimer: The product featured in this review was provided to me in exchange for an honest review by the manufacturer or representing PR agency as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. The opinions expressed are my own.
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