Families all have unique financial circumstances. When children struggle in core subjects like math and science, parents often look for different programs to help their child. The budget can be a barrier, though, especially for more expensive or intense programs. Private tutoring also could be beyond the family’s financial means.
There are many budget-friendly programs to help kids read. These programs can be used at home or on the go, thanks to the internet.
Every family might have their own definition of budget-friendly. When looking at budget-friendly programs, we’ll look at those costing $20 or less a month. Even better? Some can be free!
Parents also might want to look at the yearly cost, although budgeting per month might be easier. For example, a program that costs $20 per month adds up to $240 per year. However, paying per month might be easier to manage for some families versus a program that charges a per year subscription fee.
Every reading or learning program could have a different financial structure. Families need to understand payment obligations before committing. Typically, though, programs are up-front about their fees and costs. If the pricing isn’t listed on a website, drop the company an email. Most companies are happy to provide a quote.
No Budget: School Programs and Free Apps
Some families might not have any extra money per month to spend on enrichment programs for their child. In this situation, they may want to reach out to the school to see if their child qualifies for any reading intervention programs.
Children might need to be tested or evaluated to determine if they qualify for additional help or programs through the school. This might or might not include being evaluated for an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or a 504 Plan. What’s the difference between the two? While the IEP focuses on ensuring a child with a disability receives specialized instruction, the 504 Plan is focused on accommodations for children with disabilities. Administrators can help parents understand what option might be best for a child.
For families who know or have documented proof of their child’s reading struggles but cannot afford private programs might try contacting the school as a first step. There also could be free tutoring programs available, too. However, the school or school district could be a powerful resource in finding these opportunities.
In the meantime, parents also could use free apps or online sites to help their child with reading. There are many different free apps available and some sites also post free content. Parents looking for the best free app for their child might want to focus on apps that help their child’s particular reading struggle.
There are many apps that can help younger children practice sight words or even work on letter recognition. Some apps might be designed as games. Others could focus on reading comprehension.
When parents download free apps, though, they might want to be aware that some offer in-app purchases. This could lead to children making purchases while using the app. However, parents can turn off in-app purchases via their phone or device to ensure that no surprise charges appear on their monthly bill.
For parents who don’t have a high budget—or maybe any budget—for a reading program, e-readers also can be a free resource to help children read more. While e-readers don’t teach reading, they can be used for children who maybe don’t like standard books or for children who favor technology.
E-readers are typically pre-loaded onto phones or tablets, so parents shouldn’t have to pay for these resources. Many e-readers also allow parents or users to download free books. While the book variety might not include more popular titles, there are numerous free books that children can read via e-reader apps. And there are also many famous and well-known titles available for free through e-readers. Parents might have to just seek them out!
Budget-Friendly Subscription Apps
Parents whose children struggle with reading might opt for reading programs that offer more guidance and instruction to help their child gain proficiency. These apps might offer subscription packages that are billed monthly or yearly.
Some programs can be downloaded via an app for handheld devices like phones or tablets. Others might be accessible via a web-based platform or site. Each program might offer a unique structure, and parents might want to investigate several apps or programs to find the best choice for their child.
Programs might be priced as low as $20 per month. In fact, Readability is priced at $19.99 per month. Each account, however, can be used by up to three children. For parents with more than one child that needs reading assistance, the program can offer a financial benefit.
Some programs also offer help in different subjects, too. With certain programs, parents can gain access to both reading and math help for their child. This could be a benefit for parents whose children struggle with both core subjects.
Apps with Free Trials
Apps or reading programs might offer free trials to let parents and their children better understand how the app works and its content format. This is a great way for parents to let their children explore the program and see if they like it.
When using free trials, though, parents might wish to sit with their child to explore the program with them. This is also a good time to address any glitches or hiccups with the program. If, for some reason, the app isn’t working as it should, parents can contact the customer service department to troubleshoot the app.
Before signing up for a trial, parents also need to understand any limitations of the trial. Sometimes parents forget to cancel their trial during the stipulated time period and then are charged for the program. Parents should read the terms of the trial so that they understand if and when they might be billed. Many companies require a form of payment to access a free trial.
The Benefit of Reading Apps
Accessibility is one of the biggest benefits of using a reading app. Readability and other apps are downloaded to a device like a phone or a tablet. This means that children can access the app wherever there is a wifi signal or via a cellular network. However, parents should check their phone’s data plan to determine if data limitations are an issue.
For families who have unlimited data plans, children might use the program at a sibling’s sports practice, in the doctor’s office or maybe just in the car during a road trip. With programs like Readability, though, children will read content aloud…so parents might want to keep that in mind. Reading aloud might not be embraced during a band concert or a dance recital!
While families might have different financial limitations, there are many reading apps and programs that are budget-friendly. More basic apps might even be free to download! With free apps, however, parents might need to turn off ‘in-app purchases,’ as these apps might offer users items within the app. Parents who wish to purchase a subscription-based app can find several that are less than $20 per month. Apps might offer free trial periods, too, that enable children and their parents a way to test out the program and its lessons.
Ready to try Readability? Sign up for a free trial today!