Session 6 Evaluating Resources (Lucy)

http://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/for-school/default

This is the website that I have chosen to explore in detail and evaluate. The website is primarily aimed at supporting children with their reading, the website may be used at home by children and their parents as well as at school by teachers and children. The website contains detailed information for teachers, providing resources and opportunities for professional development. The website is free to join, there are no subscription or one of fees. This would encourage more parents and teachers to join as they can support their child/ children’s reading through the website free of charge. The website provides a variety of different resources, both English and maths which are aimed at children in reception to children in year six. However, the majority of resources tend to be for early years or key stage one, there is less of a focus on key stage two. The basic function of the website consists of activities which children can engage in, for example there are e-books which children can read which also incorporate interactive activities within them. There are also a variety of educational games for children to play, these often link to the e-books which are available. The website does not provide opportunities for children to create things themselves.

This website could be used by children on their own, they would not need to have assistance from an adult as the website contains games, stories and educational activities which are straight forward and in many cases there is an adult voice over. For example, there is an adult voice which reads the e-book out loud if the child would like to use that tool. The only thing which children may struggle with and may need assistance with is logging in and navigating their way around the website as it does not seem to appear in a clear layout.

The website could be used to help children to develop their phonics skills, for example some of the activities require the children to sound the words out and to spot the odd word out. The website also supports the national curriculum as it gives the children the opportunity to develop their reading comprehension skills, the e-books encourage children to de-code the words and to understand the meaning of the sentences. Although the website does not provide maths activities for the children it does support teachers in their planning for maths sessions, there is a considerable amount of information on maths in the national curriculum, planning maths and assessing maths.

One of the things that I really like about this website is the filter buttons for the activities, this enables the teacher, parent or child to choose the appropriate age group, the series, the level and the book type. This would ensure that children are reading the correct material for their age range/level of development.

One other things that I like about the website is that children can read e-books, play games or take part in activities without assistance from an adult, this gives the child freedom, independence, the space and time needed for them to learn new skills. The website enables children to learn at their own pace and without relying on an adult.

One thing that I do not like about the website is that it is difficult to navigate around, instead of there being one section for games, one section for stories and one section for activities, they all appear to be dotted around and this would make it difficult for children to find activities, books and games. In order for the website to work better I would organise the website differently using categories, for example all of the games under one section, all of the e-books under one section, all of the parents information under one section etc.

I would also change the design of the website by making it more colourful, interactive, engaging and child friendly so that children would be interested and would want to explore the website. At the moment the website looks dull and unattractive for children, it appears to be adult friendly by providing lots of important information but would not necessarily draw a child’s’ attention.

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