Monday, June 24, 2013

Going From Reading Eggs to Reading Eggspress

Builder Boy has been racing ahead in Reading Eggs with the intent of finishing the maps and starting the Reading Eggspress level. Because everything in the Reading Eggs lessons have been review for him, I've been letting him go ahead with two lessons a day. Today he finished the last two lessons on the very last map. He was so proud of himself! He went right into Reading Eggspress with all the eager anticipation of an explorer and braved the assessment test, even though he did not like getting answers wrong. Thankfully we tried the spelling assessment test last week on the Reading Eggs level. This was his first time with an assessment test that he didn't know all the answers to. He cried and got very upset. (Probably my fault for not introducing him to something like this before now.) I calmed him down and explained that it was okay that he didn't know the answer because it was something he hadn't learned yet, and getting it wrong taught the computer what he didn't know yet so it could teach him. Knowing his response to the last assessment test helped me better prepare Builder Boy for the Reading Eggspress comprehension assessment test, and this time he didn't cry when he got the answers wrong.

It placed him at the beginning, which was just fine with me. Eager to get started, Builder Boy chose a book titled "Trains." Right away it started asking him questions about what he thought the book would be about, giving him several different options. I am not sure if he was reading all the options, or if he didn't understand the question, but right away we had a problem. This was a BIG difference from Reading Eggs, and seems like a really big leap! There is no easing into it, no in between steps or teaching how. This was discouraging for Builder Boy, and right now, for this week, we're going to go back to Reading Eggs and work on the spelling lessons that we didn't figure out until last week and he will finish the storyland paths.

I will also be reading up on Jen Bardsly's "From 'Learning to Read' to 'Reading to Learn'" suggestions at and will blog about implementing them and how they work out for us.

I'm really not sure what I'm going to do with Early Bird and Reading Eggs now. He's been working hard to catch up with Builder Boy on the maps, and will finish the last lesson by the end of the week. Though they have the same reading vocabulary level, I don't think Early Bird is mature enough for the "Learning to Read to Reading to Learn" developmental leap. I'm really glad I got those codes so that we could figure this all out before we have to start paying for it....


  1. We have have found the Reading Eggs part to be very good with easy to follow structured lessons. Although I do have a problem with them saying they have downloadable lesson plans. I called them up and asked where they were as I could not find them. Turns out they are the printable activity sheets. These are not lessons plans they are just plain old activity sheets which, incidentally, nobody in their right mind would attempt to print out. They have huge blocks of colour and big graphics on them. 2 or 3 of these will drain your printer cartridge/toner big style in return for very little learning gain for the child. I have a huge problem with them advertising that they have lessons plans. This is false advertising.

    Once my child (also 7 yrs) moved on the next stage (Reading Eggspress) we were not so impressed. There is definitely a huge jump in ability from the Reading Eggs lessons to the Eggpress section and the whole structure is completely different. Also the focus shifts from teaching to testing! For example my child did a spelling activity that asked him to find the word that was not an adverb. What??? Nowhere in the course does it even attempt to teach what an ordinary verb is let alone an adverb (or even a noun or adjective for that matter). Yes the first section of Reading Eggs is great but I do not take kindly to paying for a site that tests a child on what they think they should already know and does not attempt to teach them anything. If I had known this I would not have paid for another year subscription. The Eggspress section is also a pain to navigate, too "gamey" and focused heavily on graphics. Also a lot of children don't like timed activities - I don't know why teachers seem to think they do. It just stresses them out, rather like being tested on something that they have not been taught - just serves to make them feel bad that they don't know it when the site acts as if they should know it. So thumbs up from us for the Eggs bit (largely) but thumbs down for the Eggspress section.

    1. Thank you for sharing this! I couldn't convince Builder Boy to try it out more than he did, so I'm very pleased to hear that from your experience, we did the right thing. How disappointing of the website company. Here's hoping they get enough negative responses and change things.


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