UPDATE: Hey parents! I am happy to announce that Spellyfish has now released an app for Short I words! This newest edition has all of the same great features as before but now with another letter to challenge your early readers with. The only downside, is that since I originally did the Spellyfish – Short A Words Review, the price has been upped from $0.99 to $2.99. However, for an app as fabulous as Spellyfish the price is worth it! Feel free to read the original review below for an overview of everything Spellyfish has to offer.
Every so often, an app comes along that I instantly love and know is going to be a winner with my kids. Spellyfish – Short A Words was one of those apps. This app has it all: Fantastic graphics, wonderful animation, educational content and FUN! Your preschoolers and Kindergarteners will have a great time in this underwater phonics adventure with the adorable ”Spellyfish” the Jelly Fish and his ocean friends.
Before your child begins playing, you can set up a user account for them so that you can follow and track their progress. Once that is done your child will begin a basic introduction to the Short A sound and then progress through different suffixes and prefixes using Short A. In each grouping Spellyfish will pronounce a word and show a picture illustrating that word. For example, he would say “Rag” and show a picture of a “Rag Doll”. Next your child must spell the word “RAG” by tapping the letters on the keyboard. As they tap each letter, Spellyfish will say the letter sound. When the correct letters are chosen the sea shells they letters are written on turn from green to red. If your child gets the correct spelling, he blinks off and on and your child earns a “starfish”. He also gives an encouraging compliment like “Fantastic” or “Alright”. If your child needs a little help, they can tap on Spellyfish who will give them a little clue or they can tap on the illustration of the word to get a reminder of what the word was. There is also a little starfish hint button that will first sound out the word and then if more help is needed, will reveal the correct letters one at a time.
This app has too many wonderful features to name. I love how it not only teaches letter sounds and letter recognition, but it is a great way to encourage kids to begin sounding out words. You can choose from either upper or lowercase letters as well so that your child learns to recognize both. This app is aligned with the US Common Core Standards that many states have adopted making it a wonderful tool for reinforcing reading and spelling skills at home. If you are a teacher, this would be a wonderful resource for your classroom. This app accommodates up to 40 user accounts and allows you to track, export and email student progress reports.
I had my Kindergartener sit down and play this app last night and he was instantly hooked. He played 2 rounds and did not want to give it up when it was time to get ready for bed. In fact, he asked to play the app first thing when he woke up this morning! I absolutely LOVE apps that make learning fun for my kids. Parents and teachers alike are sure to love this app. Spellyfish – Short A Words gets 10 gold “starfish” from me. I hope that there are more letter sounds to follow!
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this app for review purposes.