Review of Brain POP, Fun Brain, and Highlights Kids

CBT Systems workshop in October 1999 in Los Angeles ushered in the era of e-Learning. Today Online learning is one of the fastest growing areas.

The fourth information revolution posed a serious challenge to traditional education. As known, the first information revolution was due to the invention of writing, the second to the invention and dissemination of printing in the 15th century, the third is associated with the invention of telegraph, telephone, radio, and television in the XX centurie. At the end of the last century, digital techgologies and the Internet spawned the last, most powerful information revolution that continues today. The unprecedented amount of scientific information often does not allow a normal person to even simply track its dynamics. Learning optimization has become an urgent need for the educational process. Unfortunately, quarantine due to the epidemic has additionally limited the possibilities of traditional school education. In this situation, e-learning can be one of the main tools to solve this problem.


Today, the market is saturated with companies providing quality educational services for children. Of course, this segment has leaders. Today, list includes ABCmouse, Reading Eggs, BrainPOP, Starfall, Curious World, FunBrain, Highlights Kids, National Geographic Kids, Coolmath, PBS Kids. But the complete list is much wider. Of course, all of them can use traditional PCs, tablets or smartphones with a sufficiently large screen.

BrainPOP

BrainPOP
BrainPOP

In 1999 BrainPOP was created by pediatric immunologist Avraham Kadar M.D. For 20 years, this online learning tool has been recognized with a dozen prestigious awards. Like other similar services, BrainPOP is focused on the development of curiosity and creativity in children. But besides this, the service focuses on STEM (Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). In particular, STEM activities are present in BrainPOP Jr. for preschoolers, and in programs for high school students. In addition, BrainPOP Jr. offers children reading and writing programs. Unfortunately, BrainPOP is paid. But with a school subscription, it also offers free educational content for home use.

Pros

– BrainPOP was created by reputable pediatric immunologist Avraham Kadar;

– the service successfully competes for more than 20 years;

– very advanced curriculum;

– BrainPOP Jr. and BrainPOP cover all age categories, from preschoolers to high school students. This is especially convenient for families with several children of different ages;


– BrainPOP attracts real experts as advisors;

– a huge library offers quizzes, games, experiments, and more than 1,000 animated educational videos;

– BrainPOP offers Spanish and French versions, and an English Language Learner (ELL) version.

– free home access for childrens from schools with a BrainPOP subscription;

– free content for Internet safety, computer programming, ethics, conflict resolution, personal hygiene, social studies and English topics;

– monitoring the accounts to keep kids safe;

– in addition to PC, phones and tablets, BrainPOP supports projectors and interactive whiteboards.

Cons

– without a school subscription, the price is $ 115 for a year (original BrainPOP) and $ 99 for a year (BrainPOP Jr);

– some students (third graders for BrainPOP Jr and eighth graders for BrainPOP) may find the content is too simple;

– the videos include no built-in quizzes or comprehension checks;


– in addition to subscription, coding study requires additional costs.

FunBrain

FunBrain
FunBrain

In fact, FunBrain is a collection of interactive games. This site has existed since 1997. Today’s educational content includes videos, comics, and books. The site includes programs for preschoolers (Pre-K and K Playground) and for high school students.

Pros

– the site is completely free;

– no collection of personal data;

– experience of 20 years;

– the traffic of visits reaches 60,000 pages per day or 35 million per month, confirming the huge popularity of the site;

– 65,000 registered teachers have access to the classroom.

Cons

– advertising;

– the average educational leve.

Highlights Kids

HighlightsKids
HighlightsKids

Probably, many people remember Highlights magazines from school years, which have been available for over 70 years. In fact, Highlights Kids has become its online version. Basically, it is aimed at children aged 6 to 12 years. But Highlights Kids also contains a lot of content for younger children. This site does not require a subscription, earning from advertising.

Pros

– to a certain extent, 70 years of successful presence in the market confirms a high quality level;

– Highlights Kids will allow many parents to meet with their favorite children’s magazine;

– focus on entertainment content provides the site with high popularity among young children.

Cons

– the publication of images and texts on the Internet requires parental control;

– many ads often automatically transfer children to the main Highlights website with the e-commerce components and external links;

– to a large extent, the site is focused on entertainment by reducing educational content.

Conclusions


Of course, BrainPOP is most educational-oriented. It’s perfect for expanding and deepening the education of the child all the way to high school students. More fun-oriented FunBrain and Highlights Kids are effective in awakening children’s curiosity. Parents are unlikely to have to make efforts to attract the attention of their little ones to these resources. Most young children fall in love with them after the first acquaintance.

This video offers an introduction to BrainPOP.

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  1. Review of National Geographic Kids, Coolmath and PBS Kids - The Appliances Reviews
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