Common Sense Review
Updated February 2015

TopIQ Math, Reading & Writing Learning Program for Kids in Preschool, Kindergarten & 1st Grade

Skills-based games teach effectively and grow with kids
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating (1 Teacher Review) 4
  • First download content, then earn enough stars to unlock books and games in a variety of math and language topics.
  • Match letter names and sounds in this classic memory game – but pay attention because those birds move around!
  • Experiment with properties of weight balance while building a tower tall enough to reach the star.
  • One game features a kid-friendly introduction to division.
  • With the higher subscription levels, grown-ups can see very detailed progress reports.
Tons of solid, age-appropriate learning content, and the challenge level grows with each kid's progress.
Subscription plans carry a hefty price tag; some games' learning approach is confusing.
Bottom Line
The learning content and personalized leveling system could make it worth a try.
Mieke VanderBorght
Common Sense Reviewer
Common Sense Rating 4
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 4

The games are fun, and the overall design is very kid-friendly. With so many games and constantly advancing levels, kids are likely to stay interested.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer? 4

There's solid learning content within most games. Learning happens mostly through trial and error. Kids follow a personalized learning path, and difficulty grows to target learning. 

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students? 4

There's some in-activity support for kids looking for the right answer. Kids track their progress with a growing number of stars, and grown-ups can see very detailed progress reports.

About our ratings and privacy evaluation.
How Can Teachers Use It?

TopIQ is best suited for individual play. Teachers can set up accounts for every student and then send them off to play games and practice skills. As new games unlock, kids will need access to an Internet connection to download them, or teachers can download all the games ahead of time. Be aware, though: With so much content, it's easy for kids to get caught up in wanting to keep playing. Set clear time limits. Teachers get detailed progress reports, which can help point their classroom instruction in the right direction. They can also pick and choose which topics will show up for kids. Turn off the ones that are not relevant for each student. While not ideally suited to the task, TopIQ could be used as an assessment tool or comprehension check. 

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What's It Like?

TopIQ used to be Agnitus Personal Learning Program but got a new name and a bit of a makeover. In the new version, kids forge a personalized path through a collection of games, videos, books, and songs. Topics focus mostly on early math and literacy (topics include counting, tracing letters, patterns, and letter recognition) but also touch on a few general themes like personal hygiene and career options. Activities need to be downloaded, and then they are grayed out until kids earn enough stars to unlock them. As kids progress, the material also gets more challenging to meet kids at just the right level. In addition to unlocking new games, kids also earn awards for completing games and mastering content. Grown-ups can see very detailed progress reports, which describe what kids are playing, point out strengths and weaknesses, and provide general information about the curriculum and individual games. 

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Is It Good For Learning?

With lots of well-designed games, kids get great practice and opportunites for skill building. It's nice that kids start out with some basic games before they can move on to more challenging material, but the path feels a bit overly restrictive. Quick learners are forced to slog through really basic content before they're allowed access to other games. It would also be nice to have more control over the path kids take through the content. There's nice in-game support for kids who are having trouble choosing the right answer, thought there are a few games that either are poorly explained or present information without enough context; for example, the purpose of a counting game with different types of food might be confusing to some kids. Detailed progress reports provide teachers and parents with valuable information about how and what kids are learning.

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