What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that LearningPlanet.com is a subscription-based collection of learning games for kids in grades PreK-7. There’s a handful of games kids can play for free, but more games and tools are tucked behind one of two membership options: $39.95 for a family (or five students) and $99.95 for a classroom of 30, both good for one year. Parents may want to turn off "interest based" ads, but this can be tedious and time consuming. (Click on the "Ad Choices" logo in the top right corner of each ad for options). Otherwise, kids will see ads for things adults may have searched for on the same computer.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- letter or word recognition
Thinking & Reasoning
- solving puzzles
Engagement, Approach, Support
A range of games will draw kids in and keep them playing.
Drill-and-practice games reinforce specific math or language skills. The games target age-appropriate skills in each category, but games in other grade-band categories are accessible depending on kids' needs.
There are printable coloring pages, a matching app for mobile devices, and a tool to create word searches. Otherwise, supports and extensions are limited.
What's it about?
Kids can access games two ways: from the the \"Play Now\" buttons and game icons on the homepage or by clicking the Student tab where games are organized by grade level. All games have instructions and are mouse and keyboard based; they're fairly easy to pick up and there are even a few multi-player games like Word Mayhem. Kids have to enter a name to play them, but contact between players isn't supported.
Is it any good?
LEARNINGPLANET.COM's games are enjoyable and kids may find their drill-and-practice style useful for memorizing facts. Membership has its benefits; with a subscription, parents or teachers can search a large database of available games, assign particular skill-based games as needed, create customized puzzles and games, and track kids’ performance data. There's a lack of information about what makes the games good for learning. Did educators help design them? Are they aligned to a set of standards? With so much promised from a paid membership, parents may want to use the "Contact Us" link to find out more before signing up. There’s a 10-day free trial period but it requires a credit card to start.
Families can talk about...
Train yourself to choose the best learning games for kids. Read our advice to find out what’s really best for learning.
Computer games are fun and can be used as a reward when kids meet expectations at home or at school. Learn how to manage these rewards and a read our advice for being a good technology role model.