WriteReader Classroom

App review by
Amanda Bindel, Common Sense Media
WriteReader Classroom App Poster Image
Kids learn to write via practicing, mirroring, publishing.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn to write and read by practicing composing, seeing the mirrored adult version, and reading other kids' books. Using the in-app keyboard and the narration tool, kids write -- phonetically -- which allows the composition process to flow without frustration. After adults mirror a kid's writing using correct grammar and spelling, kids can practice reading. Research shows that the best way to improve as a reader and a writer is to read and to write; WriteReader Pro makes that fun and easy for kids and parents.

Ease of Play

Intro video shows how to use, and controls are easy to understand and use.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that WriteReader Pro is a research-backed writing tool that lets kids write their own stories in their own words. Parents then can translate kids' writing using proper spelling and conventions. Books can be shared, printed, or published, with a parent's permission and assistance, using the in-app library. There is a parent gate (two-digit math problem), but parents may want to monitor since icons for social media are there to tap. Kids also can read other kids' writing that has been published in the library. The developer's website includes the research supporting this form of writing practice as well as tips for developing kids' writing skills, both within the app and outside it. As of 2016, this version won't be available and will be replaced with this version and a website. It's available in several languages, including Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian.

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What's it about?

WRITEREADER PRO is designed for kids learning to write and read. To create their own books, kids tap the plus sign to add a new book and then give their book a title and author and add a cover image. They can then add text, voice narration, thought or speech bubbles, and images to each page of the book -- up to 40 pages. Parents then can add a comment or write a "translation" of the kid's writing in a separate field, using proper spelling and conventions, so kids can see and learn and practice reading. Kids can tap the speech icon to have parent's comments read aloud.

Is it any good?

The features included -- feedback from parents, the opportunity to publish, the ability to customize with pictures and speech bubbles -- make writing fun for kids, which is exactly what encourages kids to write. The more they write, the better they write; the more they read, the better they read. WriteReader Pro ties writing and reading together, letting kids write original texts, read other's writing, and reread their own writing, mirrored by the correctly spelled and assembled adult version. The keyboard is customizable, too, letting kids see the letters in caps or lowercase and hear audio of letter names or letter sounds as they type. Best of all, though, are the ideas for parents included on the website.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about writing in their daily lives, just as they can about reading. Involve kids in making wish lists, grocery lists, and other daily writing.

  • Check out the advice on the WriteReader website for more ideas on developing strong writers.

App details

  • Device: iPad
  • Subjects: Language & Reading: letter or word recognition, phonics, reading, writing
  • Skills: Creativity: imagination, making new creations
    Communication: conveying messages effectively, multiple forms of expression
    Tech Skills: digital creation
  • Price: Free
  • Pricing structure: Free (Free version is available for kids to try out writing one book.)
  • Release date: March 3, 2015
  • Category: Education
  • Size: 24.60 MB
  • Publisher: WriteReader Aps
  • Version: 2.1
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 8.0 or later

For kids who love storytelling and digital creation

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