Time4Learning is an online curriculum that began in 2004 with PreK and has since grown to cover preschool through highschool. The founder, John Edelson, started the company “with the idea that educational software should be as fun and as engaging as possible, and that the skills used to create console games should be put to work for education.”
Since its early days it has grown to provide an extensive online curriculum and community of families that use it. From the website it says:
Time4Learning is an online PreK-12 curriculum, covering math, language arts, science, and social studies. Unlike virtual schools with teachers, we empower you to take control of when, where, and how your child learns.
They state their benefits to be:
- 20,000+ activities and more
- 24/7 access
- Available on any computer/laptop or chromebook with an internet connection
- Automated grading and reporting
- Can start, stop or pause your membership at any time
$24.95 a month for grades preK – 8
$35.95 a month for grade 9-12.
Additional preK – 8 students from the same family – $14.95 a month.
PROS OF TIME4LEARNING
- Student paced for flexibility. You can work ahead or take extra time on lessons. You will have access to the grade above and below so they can review or move ahead whenever they need to.
- Online. This can be a good option if you travel or like an online curriculum. You are not downloading programs but can access it anywhere you have internet.
- Multisensory activities that are animated and interactive.
- Lesson plans and activity planner. This is available on the website. It shows you how to create structure and specificity if that is what you desire. “Planners can be created for a day, a week, or an entire school year. When students log in, they’ll be able to see what needs to be done. As they complete each lesson, they’ll mark as complete. If a student happens to get off schedule, no problem. The planner can be updated accordingly.”
There are also downloadable worksheets for some lessons.
- Grading and records. Lessons and assignments are automatically graded. This saves you time as the parent. You can print out reports of the grades. Lessons and activities are timestamped.
- “Teacher help”. Parents are the teachers with Time4Learning in regards to making sure their children understand concepts, problems and explanations. There are solution guides, online tools and answer keys for the parents.
- Electives. There are 15 electives available for highschool and 2 for middle school. Foreign languages are available by Rosetta Stone for an additional fee.
CONS OF TIME4LEARNING
- Extra screen time. It is a fully online curriculum so it does mean extensive screen time for your children.
- Core subjects only. For elementary grades only the core subjects (Math, Language Arts, Social Studies and Science) are offered. You will need to supplement for other subjects. There are more electives available for highschool, but you will still need to supplement.
- Not an actual school. It is important to note that this is a curriculum and not a school. Therefore not all national or state standards are met, though they do strive to meet them. You will also not be getting transcripts, though you do get reports of grades.
- No academic support. You do get customer support but not academic support because it is not a school.
Time4Learning is a secular curriculum. If you are looking for a faith based curriculum then you might not want to use T4L. They do cover evolution and the viewpoint on other areas might conflict with yours. Because you can’t read all the lessons prior to your student starting, you might find material that you don’t like.
While it does cover the core subjects, you will need to supplement to provide access to other subjects like music and art.
I can see why this curriculum is a popular one for homeschoolers. It covers a large part of the curriculum and it is student led. While there is input from parents as to the schedule and planning, grading is done by T4L (except for writing projects) and this limits how much needs to be done by parents.
I am not opposed to this curriculum. If we were traveling extensively I think it could be a good option for my girls – for a season. I don’t think I would want to make it THE curriculum for their entire schooling, but I can see why many families use it extensively for many years. I am not concerned about it being a secular curriculum because we like to engage our critical thinking and discuss what we are reading/learning.