Computers are, nowadays, very much part of many children's lives. However, it can be argued that they are underused when it comes to education. Despite the pervasiveness of computers in homes and schools, the idea of learning using IT is still considered a novelty by many young children. For this reason, kids are arguably more likely to find the subject matter interesting when they engage with it in an interactive way.
If you'd like to provide your children with a fun and engaging way to learn at home, then you should visit one of the many online retailers that sell educational software packages. In this article, we shall focus on the educational software available online from Dixons - a UK retailer that specialises in electrical items, but also sells a wide range of computer software packages.
Please note that all of these software packages are compatible with Windows PCs only, unless otherwise stated.
Letts GCSE Mega Pack
The Letts range of GCSE study aids is well-known and trusted by parents - the titles are comprehensive and are tested by GCSE examiners. The pack contains six different titles covering six subjects - Maths, English, French, Biology, Chemistry and Physics. They're available separately from Dixons, but it works out cheaper to grab all of the titles in one go. If you want to boost your child's chances of success at their GCSE exams, then the features that these titles boast will be a great help. They include a revision planner and even mock exam papers that can be printed out - so you can recreate exam conditions at home. Also available from Dixons is the GSP Key Stage 4 Educational Pack, which covers additional subjects at GCSE level such as ICT.
DK Preschool Pack
Younger kids seem to be especially receptive to interactive, computer-based learning. This pack of preschool-level titles contains six software suites from the 'My First' series by Dorling Kindersley - Starting to Read, Getting Ready for School, Number, Dictionary and Toddler School. Like the Letts GCSE Mega Pack, these titles are also available separately from Dixons, but if you buy them as a set they come at a bargain price. They contain plenty of activities to help kids learn the basics of reading, maths and spatial awareness. Dixons also sells the Sesame Street preschool pack, which covers similar educational areas.
EdAlive Spelling Force V2
Compatible with Windows PCs and Macs, this spelling aid combines is a comprehensive suite of educational features and word games, presented in a fun and colourful way. It is arguably the most spelling-focused software package available from Dixons. If you'd like to try another piece of software, however, the Avanquest Junior Brain Train: Word Games package is also available online from Dixons for a very affordable price.
eMedia My Guitar
For many of us, our childhood memories of learning an instrument are less-than-fondly recalled. However, when we were kids we didn't have the eMedia instrument learning packages. It lets your child learn at their own pace, guided by an animated instructor called Gary the Guitar - and it even allows kids to record their performances! Dixons also sells the other titles in the range - including My Electric Guitar, My Piano and My Violin. If you'd like to pick up an instrument yourself, you can also find eMedia's 'For Dummies' instrument-teaching packages on the Dixons website.

It seems to be the case that children are more receptive to learning if they engage with interactive study aids. This article looks at four of the most effective educational packages for kids available online from Dixons - so you can help to bolster their education at home.