Review by Amanda Bindel, Common Sense Education | Updated December 2014
Get it now - Early Learning Academy

Get it now

Busy kinder curriculum teaches letter and number skills, much more

Subjects & skills

  • English Language Arts
  • Math
  • Science
Grades This grade range is a recommendation by Common Sense Education and not the developer/publisher.
Common Sense says (See details)
Teachers say (3 Reviews)

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Pros: Colorful virtual classroom offers a variety of learning activities.

Cons: Number of activities and ways to navigate can seem overwhelming.

Bottom Line: Activities are effective for learning, but kids may be distracted by the shopping rewards.

Kids will enjoy playing - Early Learning Academy, and the activities reinforce kindergarten academics. Offer it as a station activity for students to work through on their own while you work with students in small groups or individually. Kids will likely spend as much time shopping for rewards with their tickets as they do on the other activities, but learning is embedded there, too, as kids work with numbers counting their tickets.

Continue reading Show less - Early Learning Academy is the companion app to the subscription-based, a website that offers a comprehensive preschool curriculum for 2- to 6-year-olds. Teachers can sign up for a free account online and use the same login for the app. Kids explore different activities in a virtual world, visiting a classroom, zoo, farm, and map. They can go directly to the day’s featured activity or work through a learning path that features five activities for their level, which can be customized by the teacher. Kids can learn letter and number skills as well as animal facts through simple games, books, puzzles, and coloring pages. Fun stuff includes customizing an avatar, choosing a pet hamster and an aquarium, and shopping using tickets earned in the activities.

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Content seems almost endless, and kids will discover solid new learning activities every time they play, but there's so much content, it's almost overwhelming. At every point of play, preschoolers are presented with multiple options: learning path, classroom, zoo, map, farm, songs, and featured activities. More choices are offered within each of those categories. Even the rewards are overwhelming, with options to buy items for an avatar, room, hamster, or aquarium, plus an option to count tickets earned that day by ones, twos, fives, or tens. The curriculum is excellent, however, and teachers can customize kids' learning level, time allowed in-app, and more, creating a highly tailored learning experience.

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Overall Rating

Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return?

Learning activities are brief and as enjoyable as traditional worksheets, coloring pages, and puzzles. Fun factor comes in with the ticket-based reward system.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer?

Curriculum begins with Toddler Time (numbers 1 to 5, colors, and vocabulary), and advances through Level 6, which includes word families and sight words and using math, including patterns, basic addition, and subtraction.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students?

Teachers can view student progress, customize challenge levels, set in-app time limits, and print worksheets for offline work.

Common Sense Reviewer
Amanda Bindel Classroom teacher

Teacher Reviews

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Featured review by
Katrina G. , Technology coordinator
Technology coordinator
Great site to use to engage early learners and students up to grade 1.

I love the website. Its easy to integrate, offers a lot of flexibility and keeps students engage. Parents also love that they are able to use their accounts at home and report that students are very engaged at home. I love that all subjects that are available and the Teacher printables that are free to use.

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