If you read my blog you know we use lots of Twinkl pages in our home-education so I thought I would put together a quick summary about the website. (My personal opinion I was not asked to write this.)
Twinkl have a number of different memberships. Here is my understanding of them
Free – you still have to set up a Free account in order to download the free pages. I have found a number of FREE pages which are great for early learning. – here are some links for the Free pages that we have used.
Gold – Mainly display type pages. I have used a few of these pages and turned them into learning games by reducing the size when I print. But for a home-educator I think you would get frustrated with this package as it would not include the worksheets and activities in the platinum classic (I also feel that if you are a parent wanting to do extra activities at home this package might be limited for you).
Platinum Foundation – this is aimed at Early Years only. (here is the twinkl free to download user guide for their foundation package).
Platinum Classic – everything on the site expect for the planit pages and foundation pages (ie if you don’t think you need planit this is an amazing deal). There is a free to download classic user guide on the twinkl website – it shows what is included and it is a LOT. All of the subjects and lots of fun crafty stuff.
Platinum Plus – Access to everything. This includes access to their Planit downloads. (This is what I have and I am finding with my oldest that we are using the Planit pages more and more). So Planit trying to find words to describe what you get….. Topics are broken down into detailed sections. So example if you are looking at the Romans they break it down into 6 lesson plans (Twinkl was designed to be used in schools so yes you are going to get a lot of school terminology but as a home-educator/ or a parent you just don’t use those pages). So in my example of the Romans the 6 lessons set out are – The invasion, Roman Roads, Boudicca’s rebellion, Hadrian’s Wall, Gods and Goddesses, Roman Baths. If you download a lesson plan you get a big zipped file with a bunch of different documents inside. I always download the file and then open all the documents and choose which ones we want to use, possibly tweek them in some way and just ignore the ones we don’t need.
If you do get a membership two things I would recommend you do. Firstly join some of the facebook groups – there are a bunch – they have a separate Home-education facebook group and a separate parents group and they also have some groups for locations – eg Australia, US etc. I am on a few of the groups and they tend to be very active, with people sharing ideas and links for Twinkl pages which they have used. It really does help. Also they have a number of Twinkl staff who monitor the facebook groups so you can ask questions on facebook and normally someone is around to help you (even over weekends and in the evenings I have had Twinkl staff answer my questions).
Second tip use the Save button. Okay so you are probably wondering what I mean. When you search for resources on their website and you select something to look at you will see a save icon in the top right hand corner of the picture. If you press that you will be able to save the resources to a folder which is linked to your user name. You can set up a number of folders eg Maths, English whatever you want. They later on (days, months whenever ) if you decide you want to do fractions you go and look in your maths folder and see what it was that you saved (to look at what you have saved place your mouse over your user name and a drop down menu will appear on which will be – SAVED RESOURCES – click and go and see what it was that you saved months ago). I Love this tool.
Maybe you are wondering what do you start with first – the site is BIG and it can be very overwhelming as there is just so much to choose from.
If you have younger kids I recommend starting off by looking at some of the book resources – scroll through the books in their list and choose one of your kids favourites, have a look at the activities linked to the books and see if there is something that might interest you. Also when you select a resource to look at be sure to scroll down the page and see what is recommended below it (I have often stumbled upon ideas this way).
Otherwise choose a topic. Use the menus at the top to give you an idea. So maybe choose the KS1 button and then under the subject heading select history and on the left hand side of the screen you will see a selection of history topics which you can choose from. Or you could type in key words in the search function up top (I prefer using the menus as I often think of a key word which makes perfect sence to me but is not a key word that others might think of using).
In case you are wanting some examples of how we have used their platinum pages here are a few of our favourite platinum downloads.
Hope that gives you a bit of an idea about the Twinkl website. We love it !!
I am part of Twinkl blogger network and have been given a Platinum Plus membership so that I can continue sharing ideas on how we like to use their pages.