Before a child can learn to read, he must understand that words are composed of sounds that represent letters. Children can learn how to blend sounds together to form consonant/vowel/consonant words with activities that are concrete and fun.
The Bottom Line:
Learn decodable, tricky, and CVC words through flash cards, sorted word lists, and interactive letter wheels.
- Something for pre-readers, early readers, and everyone in between – Choose the topic or section that best suits your child’s needs. Topics range from basic consonant-vowel-consonant (CVC) words to the more challenging decodable and tricky words (i.e., fully phonemic and non-phonemic words), and they are tackled appropriately in different sections. For instance, Play has a letter-wheel game that entices pre-readers to learn CVC words, and Word Lists organizes decodable and tricky words into four “phases” ranked according to complexity.
- Lovely overall design – The audio and graphics are quite nice. You’ll find vibrantly colored pages with cute artwork and hear some charming sound effects. Interaction is also smooth and quite engaging.
- Cost – It’s free!
- Room for improvement: Phonics guide – A phonics guide (with audio) would be a wonderful additional feature, particularly in the Play and Alphabet sections. It just makes perfect sense for this app to teach not only the spelling patterns of words but also how to sound out decodable words.
- We could not find anything ugly about this delightful app. If you discover something new or something that could be improved with this app, please leave a comment and we will consider adding it to this post.
- Cleverly unique CVC-word game – Use Play’s interactive letter wheels, which can all be locked into place, to construct random CVC words. The only goal is to create CVC words, and the game motivates users to continue discovering CVC words. Pre-readers and visual learners are likely to enjoy this specific feature of the app.
About This App:
My son enjoys this. He likes to play the main game and see how many words he can make. He also understands the word lists as he recognises this from school and is good practice. The flash cards are a nice addition.
3 – 8 years old
Spin and Spell is designed to help children construct simple Consonant-Vowel-Consonant (CVC) words.
An element of fun is introduced by randomising the letters when ‘spinning’ the letter lists. Children can then choose which letters to ‘keep’ to begin building a new word.
The Alphabet section provides 26 flashcards depicting all letters of the alphabet. Tapping a letter will reveal a picture and a word beginning with the tapped letter.
‘Word lists’ provides lists of high frequency words. The word lists are divided into ‘Phases’ with each phase representing a level of difficulty. Within each phase there are two categories; Decodable and Tricky words. Decodable words are words children can decode using known phonemes. Tricky words are common words that are difficult to decode because some of the letters don’t make the sounds you would expect, like ‘the’ or ‘said’.
This release of Spin and Spell contains word lists with approx. 100 words with more to come in future updates.
About this Review
Reviewed on: Jul 13th, 2012
Version Reviewed: 184.108.40.206
WPGirl: 5 year-old girl
All the information in this review is accurate as of Jul 13th, 2012