5 Apps to Help you Raise a Reader
by Catherine Ross
For every child who must be coaxed and bribed to read, there’s one caught reading with a flashlight under the bedcovers. If your little one belongs to the former category, as so many kids seem to do nowadays, don’t give up hope yet. Touch-screen generation parents have a unique resource to encourage their children to read, something their predecessors couldn’t have dreamt of. Yes, I’m talking about reading apps for kids - a quick and easy solution for every smartphone-owning family. Here’s my list of 5 reading games and apps that make reading so much fun, your reluctant reader will happily devour entire books by himself. Happy downloading!
For beginning or slow readers, words are little more than jumbled-up letters that take ages to decode. PocketPhonics for iPad uses a simple technique to help them make sense of letters and eventually form words of their own. The app shows a letter and then your child must pick the letter out from a bunch of other letters. Correct answers get a thumbs up and he has to move on to the next one. The app also teaches different kinds of printing and handwriting, including cursive, and is priced at $US6.99.
If your little one has watched the T.V. show (and even if he hasn’t), he’s sure to love this collection of 4 interactive reading games for iPad. The app targets kids aged 3-6, with the aim of teaching them phonemic sounds, short word spellings and simple comprehension. The background can be distracting at times, though the app has a relatively moderate price tag of $US3.99.
Depending on your child’s age and reading level, this app compiles a suitable list of literature uniquely suited to his needs. The more he reads, the more books get unlocked, so he can start on a new book as soon as he finishes one. Parents and kids can read together and recreate the time-honored magic of bedtime stories. Interactive and fun, a six month subscription will set you back by a mere $US4.99 a month.
NFL My Preschool ABCs Kickoff
When your tiny tots thoroughly enjoy learning the letters of the alphabet, and then gradually move on to reading simple sentences and stories, the journey to becoming an avid, voracious reader is a smooth one. Start the little ones on reading with JumpStart’s NFL My Preschool ABCs Kickoff. What with football mania all around us at this time of the year, this app is perfect to coach your little ones and make them master the alphabet. And the best part is that while the paid version of the app is available for only $US2.99, it also has a free version that you can use!
A great way to encourage kids to read is by getting them involved in storytelling. Listening and telling good stories is sure to spark off an interest in reading good stories. If your child has a fertile imagination and loves telling tall (or small) tales, this iPad app will give him an amazing outlet for his creativity. He can use it to record a story in his own voice using the simple interface and stitch together different records to create a coherent narrative. He can use up to 50 different story lines and even archive or email his stories. Help your little story teller improve his skills for $US7.99!
There are loads of fun reading apps for kids out there. What are your favorites?
Catherine Ross is a full-time stay-at-home-mum who believes learning should be enjoyable for young minds. An erstwhile elementary school teacher, Catherine loves coming up with creative ways through which kids can grasp the seemingly difficult concepts of learning easily. She believes that a ‘fun factor’ can go a long way in enhancing kids’ understanding, and blogs at http://kidslearninggames.weebly.com/
Original Photo: Zaneology on Flickr, slightly adapted by The Book Chook.