WordFlex Touch Dictionary for iPad

Common Sense Media says

Dynamic, highly visual resource makes exploring words fun.






What parents need to know

Ease of play

This interactive dictionary begs for exploration, and the controls are intuitive. Gestures include tapping, swiping, and pinching. Detailed tutorials explain how to use the app, but kids easily explore on their own.


Contains excellent definitions of terms, including words relating to violence.


Contains excellent definitions of terms, including words relating to sex.


This exhaustive dictionary includes vulgar slang and other offensive terms.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Contains excellent definitions of basic terms, including slang.

Privacy & safety

Kids can create posters of word trees to share via email or social media. A conversation reminding kids that sharing shocking things may humor their friends but would likely not entertain parents, teachers, grandparents, or future employers may be in order.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that WordFlex Touch Dictionary is an even better learning experience than perusing a hardbound dictionary and discovering words. And just as kids often like to explore shocking language in the dictionary, they can in WordFlex -- and they can even hear the word pronounced aloud or share a word tree poster via social media of the word, its meaning, and synonyms. There's nothing here language-wise that isn't available to kids in any dictionary, but the presentation of the words really sets this educational app apart. 

What kids can learn


Language & Reading

  • vocabulary


Tech Skills

  • using and applying technology

Engagement, Approach, Support


Word lovers and tech lovers will be drawn to this dynamic and visual dictionary, but some kids may need motivation to explore it fully.

Learning Approach

Representing words visually increases interest for kids, which should enhance their ability to learn and retain the word and its definitions.


The interface is already intuitive, but kids can choose from a quick how-to or a full, expanded tutorial to get started.

What kids can learn


Language & Reading

  • vocabulary


Tech Skills

  • using and applying technology

Kids can learn all about words -- definitions, spelling, pronunciation, word origins, synonyms, other tenses, and related words. WordFlex Touch Dictionary -- sourced by three Oxford references including the largest, most exhaustive compilation of words in print -- allows kids to explore and interact with words visually. The nodes branching out from the word, creating a tree-like structure, show kids how complex words are while breaking down each aspect of the word into small, easily understood chunks. WordFlex is an amazing interactive dictionary that can deepen kids' engagement with and understanding of words.

This Learning Rating review was written by Amanda Bindel

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What's it about?

WordFlex Touch Dictionary is a dictionary –- three, actually, including the largest, most exhaustive compilation of words in print –- that kids can explore and interact with visually. Kids start by searching for a word, even without precise spelling. For example, typing the word excess also offers the word excel as an option floating onto the screen. Tap the intended word and the dictionary entry expands like a tree, showing dozens of similar words, grouped in branches demonstrating the subtleties of meaning for each.

Is it any good?


Looking up words in the dictionary can seem methodical -- even boring. But kids will actually enjoy looking up words and playing around with WordFlex Touch Dictionary. By exploring, kids can develop a depth of understanding for old and new words and broaden their vocabularies. Its breadth and interactivity are also impressive. Picture the huge unabridged dictionary sitting on a pedestal in the library -– the one kids are afraid to touch because it's so heavy. Add to that a personal tutor pointing out all the connections that a word has with other words. Then make it visually appealing and compact enough to be accessed at the touch of a button on the iPad, and you get an idea of the power of this educational resource. The controls are pretty intuitive, but kids can review the Quick Start Guide for a short tutorial, the Comprehensive Guide for a more detailed manual, or the Touch Gestures link for a short list of screen maneuvers. The information page includes a link to the developer's website, which features a short video showing how to interact with the word trees.

It's pricey as far as apps go, but it's fabulous and costs substantially less than buying the multiple Oxford's dictionary/thesaurus titles covered in this app. WordFlex Touch Dictionary puts kids in charge of discovering and exploring words and gives them a visual representation of language.

Families can talk about...

  • Encourage kids to "look it up" in WordFlex when they need spelling or definition help. And then encourage them to explore and discover.

  • Work with kids to compare and contrast the experience looking up a particular word in a traditional dictionary and the experience of looking up a word in WordFlex.

App details

Pricing structure:Paid
Release date:December 3, 2012
Size:794.00 MB
Minimum software requirements:iOS 4.0 or later. iPad only

This review of WordFlex Touch Dictionary for iPad 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, okay 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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