Learning English for kids - Lingokids

App review by
Mieke VanderBorght, Common Sense Media
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Fun, full language immersion with live teachers.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn lots of new English vocabulary words from categories such as numbers, shapes, colors, food, animals, and more. Some activities introduce letter writing and give kids a bit of early literacy practice. Kids can also learn classic English-language kids' songs and rhymes. The Lingokids Live add-on gives kids a great opportunity to practice their English through live interactions with native English speakers.

Ease of Play

Navigation is super simple, though kids who are just starting to learn English may have trouble following the verbal instructions.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

There's no advertising, but to take advantage of everything the app has to offer, parents will need to buy at least two subscriptions.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Learning English for kids - Lingokids is a collection of videos, activities, and live tutoring sessions targeted at nonnative English speakers looking to learn the language. The app download is free, and a basic free plan allows access to five lessons per day. There are three options for premium access, which unlocks all content. Parents can download activity sheets and guides to help extend learning off the screen and also can receive weekly updates to track their kids' progress. Another add-on service -- currently priced at $60/month -- called Lingokids Live offers unlimited live tutoring with native English speakers through video conferencing in one-on-one sessions or in small groups of up to three kids. The app is meant to teach English to non-English speakers, but much of the content simply focuses on early literacy skills, so the program could work for native English speakers as well. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your information is collected and shared but doesn't address concerns or safeguards for families using Lingokids Live.

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What's it about?

LEARNING ENGLISH FOR KIDS - LINGOKIDS is a tool for young kids to begin learning English through a mixture of videos, songs, and activities. Kids interact with thousands of vocabulary words that form the foundation for learning a new language. In addition to lots of songs and animations, original content features live-action video of teachers introducing new categories such as animals, colors, and numbers. Games ask kids to interact with new vocabulary words. There are six levels of complexity, which get presented automatically based on kids' previous performance. For an extra subscription fee, kids can access live tutors for one-on-one or group classes.

Is it any good?

Lots of fun, kid-friendly material means a great, no-pressure, all-natural approach to fully immersing kids in the English language. Though there's an order to how content is presented, kids have the freedom to jump around as they please, which lets them take charge of their own experience. A fair amount of the video content is borrowed -- and fully credited -- from other (mostly free) sources. Learning English for kids - Lingokids organizes this content and adds a dose of its own through interactive games and live-action clips with native English-speaking "teachers." Yet, with little help beyond basic verbal instruction, the activities may be difficult for kids who are just starting to learn English. And the teacher audio in the videos sometimes gets slightly off track from the visual, which can interfere with kids matching the movements of the mouth to the sounds they hear.

In the basic and premium versions, content is overly weighted toward passive video watching. The Lingokids Live option is a creative solution to get out of that passive model and has potential to be a greatly helpful option -- but it can get quite pricey. All in all, for families who can budget for it, the whole package could be particularly useful for parents who want their kids to learn English, especially if they live in a non-English-speaking country.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the vocabulary featured in Learning English for kids - Lingokids. Learn along with your kids and use new words in different contexts throughout the day to reinforce learning.

  • Visit the developer's website to download offscreen activity suggestions, and then do as many of the activities as you can.

  • Find as many ways as you can to immerse your kids in their new language. Read books, watch movies, hang out with native speakers, visit an English-speaking country, attend English-speaking events, learn about holidays and customs from English-speaking cultures, and so on.

App details

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For kids who love learning new languages

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