Do you remember when I talked about helping your kids explore their interests when they are interested in something you know nothing about? Well, I happen to have one of those creative, artsy type kids. She loves drawing manga and creating cosplays (costume-play) for anime conventions.
She is very interested in career fields that involve creative art, such as movie make-up, video game design, or filmmaking. I know nothing about those things, so when I heard about the opportunity to review Freshi Learning Online (FLO), an interactive, self-paced, site for learning video game design, stop-motion animation, digital filmmaking, and even scriptwriting, I knew this was something would interest her.
My kids usually don’t get a whole lot of input on what I choose to review. However, this was something that I envisioned Brianna doing completely on her own, so I wanted to check with her before I committed to the review. She looked at me like I was crazy at first, then, said, “You even have to ask?”
Yeah, that was pretty much what I thought, but I wanted to be sure.
What is FLO?
FLO is a subscription service which gives the user access to dozens of self-paced training modules. You can choose to purchase a subscription to the entire site or for individual training modules. The training modules are project-based video lessons that guide users, step-by-step through the creation of their project.
We had access to the full site, so I got Brianna set up and handed everything over to her. All the courses require software that is not included in the subscription price, but it is industry-standard software that anyone interested in any of the fields of study would need anyway. FLO offers users discounts through their site and I was pleasantly surprised to find that the prices were lower than where I would normally buy (a site that might share a name with a river in South America…just in case you wondered).
Because purchasing all the software at once would be a bit cost-prohibitive (although they have a new bundle price that is super-competitive – so much so that I’m strongly considering making the investment – at 50% off retail), I asked Brianna to choose one module and see if she could work on it for a bit before we made a decision about software.
She chose the video game design and found a trial of the necessary software, so she’s been able to get pretty far into the program without having to purchase software yet. I mention that because that could be a good option for kids who want to try a module out before making a software purchase.
Using Digital Media as a Homeschool Elective
It’s exciting to me to see Brianna so excited about learning! She has never been one of those strongly academic kids, but this has captured her interest. I asked her to tell me about it for the review and I wish you could have heard the enthusiasm in her voice and seen the way her eyes lit up. She used words like “super-cool” and “super-fun.” She was so excited to show me what she’s created so far with her video game.
Brianna likes that the instructional videos show the user step-by-step what to do. She showed me that you can have the game software open in one window and the video in the other so that you can easily follow it as it walks you through each step. She said it’s very user-friendly and easy to understand.
I think FLO would make a fantastic digital media electives course for high school, although younger kids could use it, too. It even includes assessments so that students can make sure that they’re understanding everything before they move on. Of course, Brianna admitted that she hasn’t used them. She figures if her video game is working like it should, she understands, which makes sense to me. However, we both agreed that the inclusion of assessments is a great feature for parents who would like to use FLO as an elective course.
If you have a student who is interested in video game design, stop-motion animation, scriptwriting, digital comic book creation, digital animation, or digital filmmaking, I would encourage you to check out FLO. You may find that it will make a fantastic addition to your homeschool and give your student an opportunity to pursue an interest that you may not have the knowledge base to teach.
From now until June 30, WUHS readers can get the “all courses” subscription for 50% using coupon code FLOCA50!.
Do you have a student who would get excited about these courses? Which one would they be most interested in – or would they enjoy all of them?