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Is Epic Free for Parents? The Complete Guide for Families

Hey friend! If you‘re wondering whether the popular children‘s e-book app Epic is free for parents, you‘ve come to the right place. As a fellow parent and reading advocate, I‘ve explored Epic in-depth. Let me walk you through everything you need to know about cost, access and more.

In short–no, Epic does require a paid subscription for parents. But it‘s quite reasonably priced and provides incredible value, especially for boosting young readers. Here‘s the full scoop!

What is Epic? A Quick Background

First, a little about Epic itself. It was founded in 2013 by education technology veterans Kevin Donahue and Suren Markosian. Their mission was simple but powerful – get kids excited about reading, learning and exploring the world through great books and videos.

Epic has since become the leading digital library for kids 12 and under. It provides unlimited access to over 40,000 high-quality, ad-free books, audiobooks, learning videos and more. As of 2022, Epic is used in over 90% of elementary schools in the US and over 5 million kids have home access too.

Epic‘s ever-expanding library includes award-winning books and videos covering diverse topics, authors, and formats. All content is carefully vetted by child development experts to ensure age-appropriateness. There are beloved classics like The Very Hungry Caterpillar alongside exciting new releases, graphic novels, and non-fiction.

Epic Subscription Options and Pricing for Parents

Now onto the key question – how much does Epic cost if you want to use it outside of a school or classroom?

While teachers get free access, parents need a paid subscription to unlock full use. Here are the pricing options:

  • Monthly Plan: $9.99/month, flexible cancelation
  • Annual Plan: $79.99/year, equivalent to $6.67/month (saves 33%)

Both plans allow unlimited access to Epic‘s entire library across up to 4 child profiles. There‘s no limit on the number of books read or videos watched.

Many parents opt for the Annual Plan since it provides over 30% savings. There‘s also a 30-day free trial so you can test drive Epic before committing.

At just $10/month, most families find Epic well worth the investment considering the unlimited content and features. For the price of one or two physical books per month, your child gets an entire world of reading adventures!

Key Benefits of Epic for Kids and Parents

Beyond the vast library, what makes Epic such a valuable literacy tool? Here are some of the core benefits:

Encourages daily reading habits: Kids are intrinsically motivated to use Epic independently. The average student reads 5X more books on Epic than with print books only.

individualized recommendations: Your child gets book suggestions tailored to their personal interests and reading level.

Interactive reading experience: Books include read-along audio, highlighting, dictionary and narration speed control.

Built-in reading incentives: Kids earn badges and points as they read which they can redeem in the Epic Shop for cute characters.

Downloadable books: Every book can be downloaded for reading offline – great for travel and spotty wifi.

Parental controls: Manage time limits, content filtering and access by profile. Access real-time reporting on your child‘s usage and activities.

Safe and ad-free: As a parent, you can feel good knowing Epic is 100% child-safe with no ads or links.

Supports learning diversity: Epic includes dyslexia-friendly fonts and text-to-speech for emerging readers. Books also represent diverse characters, families, abilities, and experiences.

For these reasons and more, leading experts view Epic as an invaluable literacy supplement for developing young readers both in the classroom and at home.

Epic Usage Statistics and Impact on Reading Skills

Extensive research backs up the measurable benefits Epic provides for literacy skills. Here are some key statistics:

  • Students using Epic show nearly 2X greater growth in reading than peers with regular instruction only.

  • Over 70% of students meet or exceed literacy benchmarks after 2+ years of Epic use.

  • English Language Learners (ELL) using Epic score 25% higher on reading fluency assessments.

  • Kids read an average of 7 more minutes per day when using Epic, adding up to 19 more full school days of reading time per year.

  • Students take an average of 55 quizzes per month on Epic, helping reinforce comprehension.

It‘s clear the interactive experience and wider book selection drives more frequent, engaged reading with Epic. Both parents and teachers rave about the growth they see in kids‘ vocabulary, comprehension and reading confidence.

Real-World Epic Success Stories and Testimonials

Beyond the statistics, it‘s helpful to hear directly from parents and educators on how Epic has impacted readers:

"Epic has been an amazing resource as we‘ve navigated remote learning with our daughter who is in kindergarten. She is so motivated to read different books and earns stars for the challenges. Her reading skills have grown tremendously this year thanks to her teacher using Epic." – Sarah D., parent

"I‘ve been able to differentiate literacy instruction in ways I never could before by leveraging Epic‘s thousands of titles. Students have so much choice and autonomy to explore books tailored to their level and passions." – Jamie R., 3rd grade teacher

"As a busy homeschooling mom of three kids, Epic is our go-to for squeezing in reading during the day. My kids love bookmarking new books and videos and Epic helps reinforce what we‘re learning in our language arts curriculum." – Wendy S., parent

Epic Book Library Content and Highlights

Now that you know the benefits let‘s explore the Epic library itself! Here‘s a sneak preview of some of the great content your kids can discover:

  • Popular fiction series like Dog Man, Captain Underpants, Jedi Academy, Magic Treehouse and more
  • Beloved characters like Pete the Cat, Narwhal and Juno, Bad Guys and BabyLit
  • Esteemed authors like Tui Sutherland, Lemony Snicket, Mo Willems, Dav Pilkey, Michelle Obama and Jeff Kinney
  • Classic tales, folktales and fairytales from around the world
  • Non-fiction books and videos on science, math, nature, history and social studies
  • Graphic novels, chapter books, hi-lo readers, and early readers
  • Audiobooks, read-alongs and dyslexic-friendly font options
  • Spanish, Portuguese, French and other world language books

And it expands every single week! Young readers will never run out of amazing books to explore.

Comparing Epic to Other Kids Reading Apps

How does Epic stack up against other popular reading app options for kids? Here‘s a quick comparison:

Epic: Over 40,000 books and videos. Unlimited access for $10/month. Strong teacher analytics and controls.

ReadingIQ: Claims over 7,000 books but selection is unclear. Owned by K12 Inc. Mixed reviews.

Bookopolis: Smaller collection of 500 books. $7.99 per month. Limited reporting for parents and teachers.

Homer: Focus is early reading and phonics. Good foundation literacy supplement. Light on independent reading content.

Libby: Free app for borrowing library ebooks. Great value but limited children‘s book selection and no analytics.

Epic comes out ahead in my book thanks to the unmatched breadth of high-interest reading content at a very reasonable price.

Tips for Parents New to Epic

Ready to get your kids started with Epic? Here are my top tips as an educator for maximizing success:

  • Do the 30-day free trial first so your child can explore before committing.

  • Make sure to download the mobile apps so kids can read on phones or tablets on-the-go.

  • Take time to set up profiles and customize book recommendations for each child.

  • Designate a consistent "Epic Reading Time" to encourage daily reading habits.

  • Review Epic‘s parental controls like time limits and content filtering.

  • Check assignments and quizzes in student profiles to keep up with progress.

  • Discover new books together and add them to a family want-to-read shelf.

  • Set weekly reading goals tied to incentives like special treats or activities.

  • Ask your child‘s teacher if they use Epic in class to get potential free access.

Following this onboarding guidance will ensure your family gets off to an successful start. Most importantly, let your kids dive in and explore Epic‘s magic on their own terms. Happy reading!

Final Verdict: Is Epic Ultimately Worth the Cost for Families?

Given the robust library, great reading features, and educational benefits, Epic offers tremendous value for families at just $10 per month. The unlimited access and customizable profiles make it easy for parents with multiple kids to get set up.

While pricier than some free book apps, Epic opens up an enriching world of literature well worth the investment for developing young readers. Before committing, take advantage of the free trial to experience Epic for your family. But chances are, like the millions of existing users, you‘ll be hooked once you see the passion and progress it ignites in your kids.

Now if you‘ll excuse me, I‘m off to join my daughter in exploring Epic‘s latest book releases. Happy reading to all! Let me know if you have any other questions.



Michael Reddy is a tech enthusiast, entertainment buff, and avid traveler who loves exploring Linux and sharing unique insights with readers.