Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Let me introduce you to a great learning tool that we added to our homeschool - the Toobaloo, by Learning Loft.  It is a simple device that magnifies the child's voice so they can clearly hear their reading, phrasing and speech. 

Ella's reading has really improved by leaps and bounds this year.  We use a phonics approach to reading rather than whole language (for reasons I will divulge on another post), so it is important for my daughter to hear what is coming out of her mouth.  She is a perfectionist and wants to read at the same speed that I do - I am constantly having to slow her down so that she reads each and every word on the page.  I noticed that she would sometimes skip words or exchange simple words (like 'a' for 'the').  The Toobaloo lets her hear what she is reading so that she is more likely to catch mistakes herself.  

We tried it for the first time today.  On several occasions she corrected mistakes without my prompting and she seemed to have an easier time sounding out words that she did not know.  Paying attention is a challenge for her so this tool, I believe, works well for her.  We call it our "school phone".  When she reads, I ask her to "call" her friend and read the story to her.  If you can turn a subject into a pretend game or fairy tale, then Ella is all ears!

This tool is also great for children who struggle with speech.  My daughter does not have any major speech issues, however, there are certain words that she does not pronounce correctly.  I think the Toobaloo will help with that.

Learn more about the Toobaloo at Learning Loft's website.  Toobaloos are available at most teacher supply stores.  Or, you can find it here at Amazon.