A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
Start by designing a monster. Then, when your monster gets into trouble on a journey through space, step in and TEACH YOUR MONSTER TO READ. Lots of mini-games and challenges introduce basic reading concepts from letter sounds to phonemes to words to sentences. Kids can start at one of three points along the adventure: Level One for beginners, Level Two for kids already confident in basic letter sounds, and Level Three for kids ready to start reading short sentences. Once on a level, kids must progress through the whole program. Along the way they can collect items such as stars to buy accessories for their monsters and "trickies," which represent sight words.
Is it any good?
Early reading content gets slow, methodical, and thorough coverage in a complex intergalactic adventure. There's a lot of backstory in Teach Your Monster to Read, which may excite some kids but may be distracting for others. It also slows down the process of getting through the games, which also has its pros and cons. The presentation of content follows a reasonable sense of logic: The very early material focuses on single letter sounds and then graduates to blended letter sounds and simple consonant-vowel-consonant words. Finally, kids learn common sight words and sentences. It's a nice option to choose from three starting points, but it also might be nice to be able to choose a particular area to focus on if kids don't want to play through all the content. Since there are so many games, kids will often see repeats, but with lots of things happening in between each mini-game, they may not be bothered by it. It's important to note that the exact same content is available for free on the developer's website to play on the computer. Though it is easier to maneuver with the tablet's touchscreen, parents may want to give the free online version a try first. Overall, Teach Your Monster to Read has potential to be a wonderful way to accompany your kids to reading competency.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the sounds and words in Teach Your Monster to Read. Point out the concepts they're learning -- such sa letter sounds, sight words, or simple sentences -- through songs, alphabet games, books, and your everyday surroundings.
Read to your kids as often as you can. And as they get more confident in their reading skills, encourage them to read to you.
How do you get your kids to read? Are there ways to keep them reading once they're started? Check out Common Sense Media's expert article, How to Get Your Kids Reading.
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire
- Subjects: Language & Reading: letter or word recognition, phonics, reading
- Price: $4.99
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Release date: October 26, 2016
- Category: Education
- Topics: Adventures, Numbers and Letters, Space and Aliens
- Size: 100.00 MB
- Publisher: Teach Monster Games Ltd.
- Version: 3.1
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 6.0 or later; Android 2.3 and up
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.