Friday, May 20, 2011
TOS Review: Wordy Qwerty
Last fall we had the priviledge of reviewing Talking Fingers, an online program that teaches reading, writing, and spelling. You can find my review on it here. We loved Talking Fingers and were thrilled to have the opportunity to review another one of their products Wordy Qwerty.
Wordy Qwerty-Foundations for Reading and Writing Fluency is a program for 7-9 year olds that starts off where Talking Fingers leaves off. You do not have to have completed Talking Fingers in order to use Wordy Qwerty. Talking Fingers teaches how to read, write, and type, but children may not be able to spell some words correctly because they don't know how words are constructed. Wordy Qwerty teaches how words are constructed in English and provides reading and writing exercises (in the form of fun and interactive games) to increase fluency and reading comprehension. Wordy Qwerty has 20 lessons with 6 activities per lesson:
1. Patterns- Children make to lists of words by typing the word shown in the picture and sorting them by a given characteristic. They are directed to notice the patterns in the lists. If they cannot spell the word correctly the helping hands help them out.
2. Karaoke- There is a song about each of the 20 spelling rules. Children can read the lyrics on the screen and have the opportunity to sing along.
3. Recycler- In this game children are taught different vowel combinations that can make the long vowel sound. The recycle changes the first letters of rhyming words and children learn to distinguish between real words from non words.
4. Pop-a-Word -"Outlaw" words are best memorized by learning to quickly recognize them. In this game children are given a 4 word phrase to pop the ballons in order. The faster they pop the more points they are awarded.
5. Write Stories- In these 8 line rhymes, children are given the first line and then have to type out the second after they hear it. It can be repeated as many times as necessary but more points are awarded if they remember the sentence and spell the word correctly.
6. Read Stories- Childrem read a story in which every so often there is a missing word that the child chooses from 3 possible choices to fill in.
20 Lessons in Wordy Qwerty teaches the following rules:
1. Silent E 2. Sounds of C 3. Sounds of G 4. J or DGE 5. W or WH 6. C or K 7. CK or K 8. CKS or X 9. CH or TCH 10. LL,SS,FF,ZZ 11. OI or OY 12. VE words 13. Open Syllables 14. Double Constanents 15. Doubling Rule 16. ER, IR, OR, UR, EAR 17. I before E 18. Plurals: ADD ES 19. Plurals Y to IES 20. Plurals F to VES
For a free online demo click here.
Wordy Qwerty is available in two formats:
Online (license is good for 5 years!) price starts at $25 for one user
CD (not compatible with Windows 7 or Mac 10.6) $35 Includes Wordy Qwerty CD, program guide in a 3 ring binder, 1 Jingle Spells audio CD
The programs are also available for schools to purchase. For information on School License, Talking Fingers, or the K-4 bundle click here.
Nick (9) has been working on Wordy Qwerty for the last several weeks and has done really well with the program. Many spelling programs have kids simply memorize lists of random words. Wordy Qwerty does not do this. Instead, they teach that there are some patterns, or rules you need to know to help you spell. The activities that are used make learning the rules fun. Nick liked the characters of Qwerty and Midi and the story of building a music machine. All of the children liked watching the music machine being built and hearing it play when Nick finished lesson 20.
We did have an issue with the program loading. It takes a very long time for the page to load, but once we get into doing the activities we have had no problems. If your child does not pass the level, the game sends him back one time. If they still do not pass, they move on to the next one anyway. You can redo any level as many times as you would like, but the game will advance you even if you don't master the rule. I also wish that the CD was compatible with Windows 7 as it would be much more economical for larger families to buy the CD rather than pay for multiple online users.
To see what other crew members had to say click here.
I received a complimentary subscription to Wordy Qwerty for the purpose of writing a fair and honest review. I received no other compensation.