Crew Review: Webber HearBuilder Following Directions
Auditory processing, how the brain perceives and interprets sound information, is foundational to our ability to follow verbal directions. “Following verbal directions requires strong knowledge of basic concepts and the ability to process and retain auditory information.” (p. 23 Instruction Booklet)
Webber HearBuilder Following Directions teaches 40 basic concepts. What are basic concepts? These are the the words that we need to understand in order to perform tasks like following directions or engaging in conversation.
Basic concepts taught include:
- Basic Colors ~ red, blue, green, yellow
- Quantities ~ one, two, all, both, either, except, none, or, and , don’t, not
- Sequence ~ first, second, third, next, then, last
- Shapes ~ circle, square, triangle, star
- Size ~ large, small
- Time ~ before, after
- Spatial Relationships and Positions ~ first, second,third, last, between, next to, above, below
- Condition ~ hot, cold
Students become “master toy makers” and build “their own Toy Central Factories” while working on auditory training activities. There are 5 targeted skills. Each “toy factory room” focuses one skill.
The 5 Targeted Skills:
- Basic Directions ~ The Tool Room: this has 14 levels. Starts with “Click on the Dog” and advances to “Click on the large blue dog that is spinning below the boat”
- Sequential Directions ~ The Toy Machine Room: these 7 levels target the ability to follow multistep directions in order. Level one starts with “Set the size to large and press start” and the activity progresses to “First, set the size to small. Second, set the color to blue, and finally press start.” Some levels require the steps to be completed in the exact order and some levels allow any order.
- Quantitative and Spatial Directions ~ The Toy Inspection Room: with 20 levels student progress from “choose two dollhouses” to “Choose the third small red plane.”
- Temporal Directions ~ Toy Packing Room: Uses the concept words before and after in different places of the sentences. 14 levels moving from “put a train in the box before you put a duck in the box,” to “Before you put the blue Frisbee in the box, put the red duck in the box.”
- Conditional Directions ~ Toy Shipping Room: this activity provides directions containing conditions. This room has 14 levels. At level one directions are similar to “If a doll is in the box, put the box on the truck.” At level 14 the directions are more like “if a green doll is in the box, put the box on the large truck; if not, put the box on the small truck.”
My Thoughts: I admit that auditory processing skills are near and dear to my heart. Closely related to the skills of following directions is auditory memory. A strong auditory memory is necessary to process the different steps in complicated directions. I love that Following Directions stretches those auditory memory muscles. The stronger the auditory memory, the easier it is for the brain to process, perceive and interpret the verbal data presented.
I was a bit concerned when Supergirl mastered and completed the “Tool Room” which focuses on basic directions. Did I underestimate my daughter’s abilities? Is the program not as strong as I hoped? Are all the “rooms” going to be this easy for her? Yes, I did slightly underestimate my daughter’s abilities. Yes the program is as strong as I hoped and not all the rooms were that easy for her. This has been a great product for her. She has completed 3 of the 5 rooms. I like this program for her because it is engaging and stretches her auditory memory muscles which increases her ability to process information received verbally. When she completes the whole factory, we’ll start over. Eventually, I’ll have her try the expert level which adds background noise to the activities.
This product is intended for children in the Prek-3rd grade range but I did have my 17 year old daughter start at the advanced level. She has always struggled with following directions and we suspect that she has some type of mild auditory processing issue. She was not as dedicated to using the program as Supergirl. BooBear did share with me that “maybe it would have been better for me if it wasn’t so babyish. I wish we’d had this when I was younger. Some aspects were good for me like the part where we put stuff in the boxes. You’d have to actually think about it for minute in order to figure out which toy to put in the box first.” I want to have BooBear try the expert level. Though the games and activities were too young for her, I think she would greatly benefit from having to filter out the background noise. I do not regret having her try the program.
Thoughts from Supergirl: “I like it. It’s fun. I like the truck room [shipping]. I get to drive when I complete a level. I like to get all the toys. [reward game in the Toy Inspection Room]”
I would not recommend this program to older students who do NOT have trouble following directions but I do highly recommend this program for ALL children in the target age range.
Webber HearBuilder Following Directions, intended for grades prek- 3, is available from Super Duper Publications for $69.95 for the Home Edition. A Professional Edition is also available. The crew also reviewed a few other Super-duper Publications products: HearBuilder Auditory Memory and a game, Jeepers Peppers. You can check out the online catalog for more great ideas!
Super Duper Publications has provided a coupon code for Webber HearBuilder Following Directions. With this coupon you can save 30% on this product. Coupon is valid until 8/31/2012. Coupon Code: BLGFD30. For more coupon codes visit the other crew reviews.
Click on the banner below to read what other Crew Members had to say about the three different Super Duper Publications products we reviewed.
Disclaimer: As a Schoolhouse Review Crew member, I received the Home Edition of Webber HearBuilder Following Directions free of charge to review. I am required to write a review but I am not required to write a positive review. This review contains my and/or my daughters’ honest opinion with, hopefully, enough detail as to why I/ we liked or did not like a product so that my readers can make an informed decision. I received no compensation.
You can read my other Schoolhouse Review Crew Reviews by clicking here.