Skip to main content

TOS Crew Product Review ~ Read Naturally - Read Live!

Read Live (from Read Naturally) is a comprehensive set of research-based programs that assess reading while engaging students. It is a motivating curriculum that supports fluency, vocabulary, comprehension, and phonics.

The above words can be found online at Read Naturally's description of Read Live, and I must say, the above words are accurate and true. Read Live is a web based reading program that improves students reading ability along with their self-confidence. Yes, it's hard work, but most anything worth doing is.

When I first logged onto the Read Naturally website to set up our family's Read Live account, I thought the set-up process to be a little confusing. It is a multi-step process that is probably better suited to an administrator in a public or private school setting than the average homeschool mom. But I understand why Read Live operates the way that it does; it allows for multiple teachers and students to access the program, and keeps cheating at a low and accountability at a high. And overall, the set up process isn't that difficult - just a bit more time consuming than I'm used to.

The program itself is very thorough. VERY thorough. The placement method is solid and works well, but the option is given to place the student in any chosen level by bypassing the placement testing.

Each lesson is, again, VERY thorough. At first it seemed a bit repetitive to me (listening to the piece being read as many as 10 times!)but the continual improvement the student makes is worth the time spent on each lesson. And the beauty of the repetition is that the student is able to see instant progress. It's very encouraging for the reader, which in turn encourages the homeschool mom, which makes me smile because I'm all about encouraging moms who homeschool!

The vocabulary games are really good and the subject matter for each reading piece is interesting and engaging. Many topics we read could be considered cross-curricular, covering history or science in addition to language arts.

Overall Read Live is an excellent program. It's value is tremendous. The program is not likely to work wonders for your child if you don't use it regularly (just like any other curriculum), but if you and your reader(s) will take the time to complete the lessons you will see results. Second to teaching our children God's Word, their reading ability is the hinge on which the door of all future educational success hangs. Read Live will increase your child's reading ability and comprehension, along with their fluency and self-confidence. It's worth the financial and time investment. A top-notch, five-star program in my book.

As it is an online program, users need to have regular access to a computer. And as a disclaimer to Christian homeschoolers, much of the reading material that is scientifically related mentions evolution. The child is being timed while they read, and each piece is read multiple times, so they will hear evolutionary spiels over and over again. We have some set methods in place when it comes to evolutionary content in our home, and it has worked fine to discuss content from a Biblical perspective with this program. However, each family is cautioned to make the best choice for their family and I would be remiss to fail to mention this aspect of the program.

At the website you can learn more about all the products available. You can also find a tab for a free 60-day trial of Read Live on the main page.

A 12-month subscription to Read Live costs $149.00. The recommended ages for students is 1st through 8th grade, although it can be used as an intervention program from 1st grade through adulthood. For more information, you can email them at

Since it is an administrator controlled program, the primary homeschooling parent (usually mom!) needs to set aside time to work with the child as they complete their Read Live lessons. This is probably given, since it would be nearly impossible to assess reading progress if you aren't actually there to hear the student read...but I thought I'd mention it anyway :)

As always, I received this product free of charge for review purposes.

To read what other TOS Crew members had to say about Read Live and other Read Naturally products, click HERE.

Thank you for taking the time to read this product review and may the Lord richly bless you as you homeschool!

Day 133 done :)

Jan L. Burt


  1. Reading is very important because without it we cannot read & understand God's Word.

    I love you about me picture!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

A Homeschool Mom's Devotional (# 1)

Colossians 4:17 tells the reader to "be sure to carry out the work the Lord gave you".

How can this be applied to the enormously busy lifestyle of a homeschool mom?

First of all, we must always remember that the Word of God has the answer for our every need and we can trust fully in God to use His Word to lead us, guide us, correct us, and bless us.

Keeping that in mind, let's consider what this verse is saying. We are told to carry out, or complete, the work the Lord has given us. We are wives, mothers, homeschoolers. Those three BIG job descriptions come immediately to mind when I think of homeschooling mothers. Applying God's Word to our life means carrying out our work as wives, as mothers, and as homeschoolers.

When I am exhausted from another long day (or long week, long month, long year, etc.) I still must honor the Lord by blessing my husband. Maybe that means having a hot meal on the table when he arrives home from work. Perhaps your husband would prefer a…

A Schoolhouse Crew Review ~ Homeschool Spanish Academy

Homeschool Spanish Academy described in a single word ~ WOW!!!

Okay, now that I've pretty much summed up how our family feels about Homeschool Spanish Academy, let me give you some reasons for the "WOW" factor.

Right from the start, the process was a breeze. Working with tech support was fantastic; they made all the set up/prep/techie stuff easy.  Once it was determined that our laptop was good to hook, my daughter logged into her Skype account and answered a call from her teacher, Elda. And let me tell you, Elda is terrific. In fact, everyone we have had the pleasure of working with has been terrific. I could boast all day about the caliber of the people at Homeschool Spanish Academy...but again I can sum it up with the word WOW!!!

Live video chat lessons are done via Skype - if you don't have a Skype account you can set one up for free. The teacher from Homeschool Spanish Academy will "call" your child; once your child "answers" the call the tea…

Homework for the Homeschool Mom

As the homeschool mama, I am the one doing the assigning and not usually the one receiving the assigning. I am sure you feel the exact same way. But today I am giving you, the mother who is (most likely) primarily in charge of her children's education, a homework assignment. And I really hope you will take the time to complete it!

The first part of your homework assignment is simple:

          Grab your Bible, turn to Matthew 25:14-30, and read it.

Re-read, highlight, underline or take notes on any portion(s) of this passage that stand out to you. Be an active reader. Read this while thinking about your own life. Ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you about this passage.

Then, read it one more time.

Finally, the "hard" part of the assignment....

Sit quietly before the Lord, pen and paper in hand, and write what He speaks to your heart about this passage. Ask Him to show you where you are rightly using what He has given you for His glory and His purposes. And, on the more di…