The Old Schoolhouse® Product & Curriculum Reviews

With so many products available we often need a little help in making our curriculum choices. The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine family understands because we are in the same boat! Do you need more information on a product before you buy? With over 5,500 products listed in 52 easy-to-use categories, much of the information you need to know is only a click away! Let our reviewer-families help yours.
Do you want to get the word out about your product or service to the homeschool community? Email Tess Hamre and share a little about what you´d like showcased, and we can help with that!

Wordsearch Designer Review by Leslie Talley

Focus Educational Software Ltd.
PO Box 52 Truro, Cornwall TR1 1ZJ
(+44) 01872-241672

The Wordsearch Designer is a computer program produced to help you create your own wordsearches. The program is simple and easy to use. The simplicity of it means that you can create a wordsearch in just a few minutes. The wordsearches can be printed out, or you can use the included wordsearch viewer program. There are quite a few options when making a wordsearch. You can change the size of the grid, the font, and the direction in which the words are placed.

I used this program to make wordsearches for my first grader. I took the words from her spelling lesson, and added spelling words from previous lessons. She enjoyed searching for the words, and it helped prepare her for the next lesson. This program is best suited for first graders and up. Older children would probably enjoy making their own wordsearches. If you decide to print the wordsearch, you have two options: portrait, which prints one wordsearch, or landscape, which will print two. I chose the landscape option because I was then able to make an answer key from the second wordsearch, which gave my daughter the opportunity to correct her own work. This program would work well for homeschoolers, as well as traditional school settings.

I like the program, but one thing that I found lacking was the size of the font and grid once printed. You are able to change the size of the grid to accommodate more words, but that does not change the size of the font, or the size of each square in the grid. Therefore, the letters are small and slightly close together, which makes it more difficult to search, especially for my first grader. This would not be a problem if you were able to increase the size, once you go to print. I would recommend it to those with older children, because the grid size and font is so small. At this stage in our homeschooling, I would not purchase this program. My children are all too young. I will still use it with my first grader, though, because I think she will benefit from it.

Product Review by Leslie Talley, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, January 2012