Word Wizard App
By Pierre Abel
Age Recommendation 4+ years.
Remember Speak and Spell? Well this is the answer for the new generation. An app that teaches kids how to read phonetically, and it does this cleverly through voice in response to your child’s choice of letters and words. As your child places letters or even groups of letters on the workspace to make a word, the voice will sound out for them how the letters sound not just as individuals, but as they come together. Something I have not seen in an app before.
The large letters the game displays are a true asset. Other applications I have seen with full alphabet on screen have made the letters too small making them less inviting and more difficult to read especially for the preschooler.
The dictionary holds more than 1000 words and has a hint option, that if stuck on a spelling word, the app will throw out a letter to help. For early readers, you can use this hint button as a copy option where you simply want the child to copy the word. When giving my kids the spelling test, I get them to ask me if they can get a hint.
With three children doing homework at the same time, I have found this app a blessing. As I am working with one child, I can send the other off to do their weekly spelling list on the Word Wizard. You simply create a personal list of words you want the child to work on, and independently they are able to complete it with the help of the hint button if stuck. At the end of the list, the Word Wizard tells me how many they got right, wrong, and how many times they needed to touch the hint button. This allows me to see how much assistance they needed with their words. If you choose to use the set spelling lists, it is easy to manipulate difficulty. The set lists also cover a wide variety of categories.
The game gives your child an option to use numbers, although if you’re after a number app that teachers counting, addition and subtraction, this is not the app you’re looking for. The number sections is however fun, and is great for teaching number recognition, even up to a billion! Once again, the voice tells the child the number they have made when joining them together.
I wish I had this app in my hands sooner, as the potential benefit to kids is great. Try it with your child’s spelling list, and you’ll wonder how you did without it. This is one that will be staying on my iPad for a few years yet.
Danielle Mantakoul 2013
Copyright 2013 Mummy Weekly