Touch and Write Phonics
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Touch and Write Phonics is a beginning phonics and letter-tracing app that includes 18 fun "writing textures" -- pudding, pumpkin pie, pink chalk, and more -- as well as 35 writing-paper styles for backgrounds. Players can listen to a brief, animated lesson for each main phonics concept ("Vowels," "Blends," and "Digraphs"), then trace letters as they first hear a voice speak the phonetic sound and then the letter name. A little monster guides kids by following cupcakes along the tracing path. Parents can create tracing word lists, too, but only from a pre-chosen, alphabetized group of words. Options exist for kids who need more traditional pencil-and-paper choices to minimize distraction, and there's darker paper for kids who are visually impaired.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- letter or word recognition
Thinking & Reasoning
- part-whole relationships
Health & Fitness
- fine motor skills
Engagement, Approach, Support
Kids can choose from 18 fun writing textures and 35 writing-paper backgrounds. The animated lessons are brief and kid-friendly. Monster-and-cupcake guides and rewards continue the engagement through practice sessions.
Lessons help kids learn phonics concepts and hear examples in conjunction with tracing practice. The monster-and-cupcakes guides won't allow kids to trace letters incorrectly.
Kids get helpful in-app directions, as well as color-coded letters for phonics clues. Practice reports list the date, the number of the practice session, and the percentage of letters formed correctly. Dark paper is available for kids who are visually impaired.
What's it about?
Enter a username for each kid's progress profile. Then choose a main practice area by tapping "Vowels," "Blends," or "Digraphs," or create a pre-made word list. Listen to the animated lesson or begin a practice sessions. Choose the tracing texture as well as paper with a simple tap. Arrow keys allow players to skip or repeat letters or words. Kids can play on the reward page after completing practice pages. Progress reporting is easily accessible from the "info" page.
Is it any good?
TOUCH AND WRITE PHONICS artfully combines tracing and basic phonics practice in one app. This happy, colorful practice experience includes helpful features, such as animated phonics lessons, cute monster-and-cupcake letter-tracing guides, color-coded letters for phonics clues, and engaging writing textures and paper. Progress tracking and in-app email sharing can be useful for parents, therapists, and teachers working together to support a kid's language and writing growth. The beginning lesson for each main phonics section need not be repeated before each practice session. Parents can access settings, directions, and practice reports from the information page.
On the downside, there's potential for confusion when finding the right place to start, based on a kid's current letter-formation skills and level of phonics awareness. This likely requires an adult's help to avoid frustration for at least the first few play sessions. Also, some of the writing textures and paper combinations can get a bit busy to the eye. Nevertheless, Touch and Write Phonics can be a unique, useful way for kids to practice phonics and tracing.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about and try some of the writing textures -- chalk, shaving cream, ketchup -- at home for fun, sensory-based tracing.
Use the reporting to check on your kid's progress, and, if you have concerns, you have the in-app option to share the report via email with your kid's teacher.