What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Read To Kids is a voice recording app, mainly for adults who want to record themselves reading a book for their kids or for kids to practice reading and speaking skills. The app inserts beeps to indicate when a page should be turned, provides options for the length of silence for page turning, and records book information. The screen doesn't change, nor is there any way to insert an image of the book cover or photo of the reader. Read To Kids is essentially a basic voice recorder with a page-turning notification feature.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- using and applying technology
Engagement, Approach, Support
What's it about?
READ TO KIDS is very easy to use to record and play back recordings. There are only three choices on the main page: Record, Listen, and Instructions (which includes a 14-point tutorial). Users can log the name of the book, ISBN number, and the name of the reader. They can also set the tone that listeners hear for the page-turning notification, and set how much time is given between pages for turning time. Recordings can be emailed and also stored on iTunes.
Is it any good?
The voice recording and book cataloging features on Read To Kids are very easy to use and can be beneficial to parents and kids in many situations. But this app really needs to include visual elements in future versions. Currently, the screen remains static -- listing the title, narrator, and ISBN number on a plain, brown background -- as a kid listens to the recording and presumably looks at the hard copy version of the book being read. Even though Read To Kids mirrors a book on tape format, it is an app, and kids expect at least some minimally interesting visual elements. Something as simple as a photo of the narrator or of the cover of the book would help interest kids and hold their attention, especially if the book being read is not available to look at while they listen.
Families can talk about...
Ask your kids if the page-turning settings (time and tone) are set the way that's comfortable for them.
If your kids can't yet read independently but want to record a story, take turns reading pages or parts and record it together.