An Online Preschool Program Review

Even if you have no interest in homeschooling your child, as a parent, you’re still your child’s first teacher.  Toddlers and preschoolers intuitively pick up a great deal from their environment, which is why experienced parents urge new parents to carefully monitor their words and actions. We even featured a great article a few weeks back about the importance of teaching your kids financial responsibility and the role parents play in helping children learn to manage money.

abcmouse classroom

If you’ve shifted your priorities to be a stay at home mom and are interested in homeschooling your child, finding suitable homeschool programs can be overwhelming.  There are so many different programs and ways to teach.  Even if you don’t plan to homeschool, you may want to consider online preschool programs to help make sure your child is ready for kindergarten.

I don’t plan to homeschool my kids, but both my girls, who are 4.5 and almost 3, are eager to learn, so I went in search of an online preschool program.  What I found was, and all three of us have enjoyed it greatly!

Who is Suitable For? is suitable for children ages 2 to 6.  There are 7 different levels to choose from:

  • Toddler Time:  Perfect for children ages 2 and older.  This is the easiest level, and it’s where I have my youngest daughter.  The activities are perfectly suited for her age (2 years, 10 months).
  • Preschool:  This area is for those ages 3 and older and has two levels–Level One and Level Two.
  • Pre-K:  This area is for those ages 4 and older and has two levels–Level Three and Level Four.  I started my daughter on Level Three, and it is just right for her skill level.  (She is 4 years, 4 months).
  • Kindergarten:  This area is for those ages 5 and older and contains the last two levels–Level Five and Level Six.

What Activities are Available?

This is my first time using an online preschool program, so I don’t know what other ones have to offer.  However, has thousands of activities, so your child will likely graduate from this program before running out of activities.  Each of the 6 levels from Level 1 to Level 7 has at least 400 activities each.  Between the 6 levels, there are over 3,500 activities!

The levels are divided into environments.  Each environment has 4 to 6 lessons.  Each lesson has 4 to 7 activities, depending on the level.  (Toddler Time, for instance, has just 4 activities, while Level Three has 6 or more activities per lesson.)

Within each lesson, there is a good variety of activities.  Typically, there will be a song, a story, a game, a puzzle and a coloring activity.  Each activity reinforces the theme of the lesson such as primary colors, or the letter b, for instance.

The parent can choose to have their child follow a preassigned learning path (which is what we do).  However, the parent can also choose to focus on certain activities such as math or art or to skip around to the activities that interest the children most.

Reward System allows you to personalize your child’s experience.  Your child can choose her own avatar, as well as what her teacher will look like.  She also gets to choose a virtual hamster and gets her own virtual room.

Each time a child completes an activity, she gets 1 to 3 virtual tickets.  Each time she finishes a level, she gets 20 bonus tickets and to choose a “prize”.  The prizes range from tubes for the hamster to run through to decorations for her virtual room.  She can use the accumulated tickets to “buy” more things for her room or to buy more tubing for her hamster to create a virtual maze for the hamster.

My girls like decorating their room and creating the maze for the hamster, but honestly, we spend less than 10 minutes a week on these activities.  The rewards are nice, but my girls aren’t really motivated by them because they like to do the learning activities anyway.

Does It Work?

The girls and I have been using this program for 5 weeks now, and I’ve noticed more letter recognition in my younger daughter.  My older daughter is now trying to write words and letters, which she did not do as much before using this program.

In addition, they both love the time we spend on  We use it about 20 to 30 minutes every day, and it is one of the girls’ favorite activities. offers a one month free trial, so you can try it out with your kids with no obligation.  That is what we did, just to make sure we liked it.

How Much is is a reasonable online preschool program, in my opinion.  The first month is free, and then it is $7.95 a month after that.  You can also sign up for 12 months at once and receive two of those months for free, dropping your monthly cost to as low as $6.60 per month.

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for preschool homeschool programs or you just want to spend time helping your child learn and prepare for school, I would recommend  For a small monthly fee, your children will likely learn and be entertained.  We also find it a great way to spend time together.

Have you used  Would you recommend it?

Picture by ABCmouse.

About the Author

By , on Mar 1, 2013
Melissa is a freelance writer and blogs at Mom's Plans, where she shares her family's journey to get out of debt, live a fulfilling life on less, and enjoy healthy, allergy friendly foods. She is a mom to three kids, ages 8, 4, and 2.

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  1. Kelly says:

    Sounds like a great program. I can only imagine how much work it would be to home school young children, but it would also be really rewarding. You’re right that kids pick up so much from just being around their parents and in regards to money management, its definitely something that should be instilled in them through parents or guardians.

  2. Great program. What could be the best recommendation in the case of early grade school levels? It is quite a necessity to have this kind of supplementary tool for school these days. Thanks.

  3. I feel like nothing compares to the classroom experience, so it is more beneficial to send your child to an actual preschool so they an interact with teachers and other students in person but if you are just using the program on the side while they are in preschool or as preparation for school over the summer it sounds like a great investment!

  4. Melissa says:

    Yes, I thought I would find a lot of DIY homeschooling options, so I was pleasantly surprised when I found this.

  5. Thad says:

    Thanks for a peek into what is available online for preschool help!

  6. Laurie says:

    This sounds like a great program, Melissa. I especially like the rewards part of it. Our kids are too old for this now, but I just wanted to make a little plug for homeschooling. :-). We’ve been homeschooling for 8 years now, and one of the great benefits of it is that it’s allowed us to teach the kids life skills and tailor other lessons for them at an early age. So, aside from having great academic scores (a 1:4 teacher/student ratio helps), they are all learning to run a hobby farm and create and start their own business, and the oldest is only in 7th grade. Tailoring your child’s education is one of the great benefits of homeschooling. It’s not for everyone, but I’d urge people considering it to research and find out more. Thanks for the great post!

  7. Homeschooling is becoming a much more viable option lately. Our kids are still in public school (and my wife and I are busy working pros), but the stigma of a home-schooled child is long gone in my opinion. Nice post!

    • Melissa says:

      Tony–I agree. If I didn’t freelance from home, I’d definitely consider homeschooling. I know some freelance and homeschool, but I don’t know how they do it!

  8. MomofTwoPreciousGirls says:

    My girls are 5 and 3 (will be 4 in exactly 3 months….wahhhh) and attend a local preschool and private pre-k program and they have integrated abc mouse into their learning. They do it or the class on a smart board and the school is covering the monthly fees for us to use it a home to supplement. It is great and the kids love it!

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