Word Wagon - by Duck Duck Moose

Common Sense Media says

Colorful spelling game with lots of ways to customize.






What parents need to know

Ease of play

Clear instructions, although they're not provided immediately at the beginning of the levels, so kids need to wait until narration begins. The activities and rewards are easy to understand while in progress.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Not applicable
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

No personal information is required. The developer's Privacy Policy is available on its website.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Word Wagon - by Duck Duck Moose is a phonics and spelling app designed for beginning readers. As the little mouse and bird bop along, kids can tap any item they pass and try to spell it. Depending on the level you choose, you can either see the silhouettes of the letters in place, or try to spell it without any such hints. For each word they spell, kids will win an animated sticker for their virtual sticker book. And every three correct spellings earn them a chance to play a connect-the-stars constellation game.

What kids can learn


Language & Reading

  • phonics
  • spelling

Engagement, Approach, Support


Engaging, colorful, whimsical animations and solid educational content that's easy to grasp while still being fun for the youngest readers and spellers.

Learning Approach

Kids learn to spell through matching, a rewards system, and increasingly difficult levels that ultimately remove all visual and audio clues and leave them to spell words on their own.


For each word they spell, kids earn a sticker. Every three correct spellings earns them a chance to play a connect-the-stars constellation game. The app doesn't keep track of progress from session to session. 

What kids can learn


Language & Reading

  • phonics
  • spelling

Kids can learn about letters, phonics, and spelling with Word Wagon. Parents and kids can set it to one of four progressively harder levels: letters, phonics, and spelling of short and long words and also to display either upper- or lowercase letters. In the first two levels, kids can match the letters to form the words; in the latter two levels, there is no visual cue, and kids have to arrange the spelling of the word on their own. There is also a nice variety of word topics such as animals and food to choose from. The level of customization makes Word Wagon a good fit for kids at different skill levels.

This Learning Rating review was written by Cynthia Chiong

Parents say

Kids say

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What's it about?

In Word Wagon, kids follow Mozzarella and Coco as they travel down a conveyor belt of objects. As they jump over each object, kids can tap on the object to learn more about the letters in the word associated with it. With each word they spell, they earn a sticker, and with every three words, they earn a star that leads to a constellation picture. However, Word Wagon does not keep track of progress from session to session. Finally, Mozzarella and Coco do silly things, making Word Wagon an app that combines humor and learning.

Is it any good?


WORD WAGON - BY DUCK DUCK MOOSE has the same crisp, colorful, and whimsical animation as the other wonderful learning apps by this publisher. And the solid educational content here is conveyed in a way that is clear and easy to grasp, while still being fun for preschoolers. The sticker collecting feature and the bonus constellation game are both neat additions that kids should enjoy a lot (although they may complain that the constellations don't really look much like the animals they're supposed to be until after all the lines are filled in). The best part for parents, though, is the ability to customize the lessons. Choosing different levels doesn't just make the words more challenging, it can also mean removing audio or visual hints, or allowing kids to hear the word used in a sentence, and so on.

Families can talk about...

  • Make sure kids don't lose focus on the word by playing with the characters too much.

  • Ask your kids to spell the words they just learned.

  • Draw connections from the words shown to real life. ("Train starts with the letter T, just like your name.")

App details

Devices:iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
Pricing structure:Paid
Release date:September 14, 2013
Size:25.70 MB
Publisher:Duck Duck Moose
Minimum software requirements:iOS 5.0 or later

This review of Word Wagon - by Duck Duck Moose was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent Written byembeau August 25, 2011

Great app that reinforces letter and sound recognition

Great for learning to recognize letters, read etc. Mostly short words which is a plus in the beginning. This app also reinforces the "sound" of the letters instead of what you call the letter..For example it refers to E as "eh" not 'ee' . This is the best way to learn letters and learn to read.
What other families should know
Educational value


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