Cultivate it.

There are many concepts to conquer when you first learn to read. Within the educational app world, there are many apps that help with the reading readiness aspect of reading, however, there are not as many apps that help kids once they have already conquered intro-level reading. What makes this part of the learning process particularly difficult is teaching students the relationship between letters and sounds in order for deeper reading to be achieved. In addition, the English language does not always follow the same rules. While the majority of our words prove phonetically correct around 84 percent of the time, rule-breaking words are within the top 25% of words that are used on a regular basis. Herein lies the problem in teaching reading, as some words cannot always be decoded using the same formula. There are numerous sophisticated processes that drive comprehension including inferential and deductive thought processes, observation, analogical reasoning, and reflection. Children need a strong foundation to build up to these higher level thinking skills in order to become strong readers. TWA went back to look at some of the most popular apps to help assist with this challenging task and have come up with this collection of apps to aid instruction for those already on the road to reading. Reading is essential – cultivate it!

The Sounding Out Machine – Assistive Reading Device by FizzBrain is a brilliant app andhas been built specifically for decoding purposes. It helps children focus on hard words for them when reading, and then models/teaches them how to sound out difficult words. Children are able to isolate and enlarge a challenging word with the Word Window.  Then, the app “models how to chunk the word into syllables and use phonics skills to blend the phonemes together and sound out the word.  Children can use their own digital word card to practice and become independent.”

World’s Worst Pet – Vocabulary, by Curriculum Associates, LLC, in conjunction with ArtGig Apps, is a great way to grow students vocabulary skills. Students will stay motivated through great gameplay, as this app is a take on the ever-popular Cut the Rope. That, combined with sharp knives, scary spiders, old attics, toxic dumps and so much more, kids LOVE it! Word definitions are learned in several different ways and the player(s) needs to be on their toes. This game is quick paced and formats change quickly. Snargg, the dog – otherwise known as the worst pet ever – traverses through all kinds of sticky situations, while words and phrases are matched by differing categories.

Kids Vocabby MindSnacks, is the latest release by this prestigious language company and Kids’ Vocab says it all in its video trailer, “Words Shape Your World.” This app has nine games addressing multiple skills including context, spelling, categorization, etymology, roots, and affixes with 350 pertinent vocabulary words – all based on the common core standards. Did you know lit is Greek for letters, and literacy is Latin for education? Learn it from the language masters! MindSnacks continues to produce mindful educational apps for a variety of users. What makes this app a complete standout is that it addresses deeper learning in the form of engaging gameplay, not just rote memorization. The app serves as a comprehensive vocabulary tool that teaches definitions, spelling, pronunciation, contextual usage and parts of speech. Designed for student’s ages 7-12, Kids’ Vocab offers hours of fun and challenging activities that can be used on a daily basis to supplement regular class work.

Skoolbo is a FREE app with both math and literacy covered. Skoolbo offers personalized game-based skill practice for literacy and English language learning allowing both teachers and parents to monitor and track a child’s progress. It’s also FREE! It is compatible with a variety of platforms including PC, Mac, and iPad (iOS) and Android devices a web version is available. The skills covered in Skoolbo range from decoding, vocabulary, reading comprehension, as well as sight word and grammar gameplay. This wide variety of skills make this app appropriate for a wide range of children.

Pocket Sight Words by Cortes Global Pty Ltd. is a literacy learning app for teaching the age-old task of learning to read sight words in a brilliant one of a kind app! Sight words are the common words that are not usually phonetic in nature and therefore cannot be decoded or “sounded out” and as a rule are a challenge to learn. These words make up a list of about 220 words that keep appearing on almost any page of text, “the, he, was, does, me, come, and look” are all listed on the beginning lists first introduced to early readers. Pocket Sight Words helps teach children these high frequency/sight words for beginning readers and writers in an easy to use, concise, and engaging manner.

e Skills Learning was founded to develop and publish instructional materials using the latest in mobile technology that will challenge and motivate students. With over 30 years of experience in traditional educational publishing, the staff at e Skills Learning™ have an experienced understanding of carefully developing materials that align with the new Common Core Standards, meet state testing standards, correlate with core curriculum and achieve successful learner outcomes. Mastering Essential Skills is the foundation for success in learning. Essential (basic) skills are necessary if students are to apply classroom learning to real-world solutions. Two apps recommended by e Skills Learning are Figurative Langague and Parts of Speech. Unlike other materials on the market, each of their apps is designed to help students learn and practice a specific academic skill allowing for mastery of that skill as a foundation for understanding the next sequential skill.

iTooch Middle School, by eduPad is not only a state of the art and completely comprehensive educational app, it is exciting, effective and enormously fun!  iTooch Middle School has more than 10,000 exercises in ELA (reading, writing vocabulary, grammar) and […]Read Post → Leading the educational and mobile apps from Elementary to Middle school, iTooch is now available on the Google Play Store. Educational apps eduPad is publishing a large list of educational and interactive apps for tablets and smartphones.

 Crack the Books by Mobile Education Store is wonderful for non-fiction reads. Five Reading Levels. Infinite Possibilities. For when not all things are equal. Teachers and parents can spend countless hours trying to find curriculum content to support their varying reading levels. That’s why Kyle Tomson designed Crack the Books™ just for you. These revolutionary digital science books are the first that can allow for reading level adjustment from 1st to 8th grade within the same book, making it possible for all students in a classroom or home scenario be able to access the same great content regardless of their reading ability.

Seashores to Sea Floors, by the Mobile Education Store, is an extraordinary addition to the Crack the Books series, a succession of upper elementary ibooks that target 3rd to 6th grade science and social studies core curriculum concepts. Seashores […]Read Post →

Blades – The Grassland Biome, by Mobile Education Store, is the second ibook in the biome science series to be released. This grasslands based part of the INCREDIBLE Crack The Books™ series of educational, interactive books. TWA recently wrote about Pines and Vines, the […]Read Post →

Pines to Vines – The Forest Biome, the first in the series of Crack the Books by developer Kyle Tomson of Mobile Education Store, is a masterpiece about to revolutionize the world with its 21st century textbook model! This app […]Read Post →

The Mobile Education Store also has many apps originally developed with the special needs child in mind, turns out they are great tools for many children and various ages and stages for a plethora of different literacy skills that need to be taught. Check out these other apps here:

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