It’s easy to write review posts about inconsequential things because those posts require no feeling. Maybe a little thinking, mostly just retelling. No feeling.
2014 has been a hard year and I’ve discovered this about myself: While I don’t mind oversharing with the world at large about our propensity towards all things that simplify our lives or how I talk to myself in the grocery story, or how I often look for my phone around the house…while I’m talking on it…I don’t necessarily just jump right in and share when I’m feeling like crap because it’s been a crappy year.
I did go ahead and share some feelings over here at our church blog a few weeks ago.
And that’s about all I’ve got for now. I keep trying to make myself come here and write something, but there just doesn’t seem to be anything worth saying that doesn’t cause me to cry.
I am a member of the TOS Homeschool Review Crew. The focus of this post is to highlight an educational resource that my family received for free for the purpose of review. No other compensation was received and all thoughts contained in the post are my own. I keep a proper disclosure statement here.
Sometimes I can be a sucker for good educational apps. And when we had two preschool aged boys living with us, I jumped at the chance to review this fun one from Talking Fingers, Inc. called Talking Shapes. This interactive app is designed to help younger learners grasp the concept of the alphabet. It includes stories and games to teach kids that words are not just one whole thing, but are made up of parts – sounds, and how the different letters represent the different sounds and when put together they form different words! Watch this helpful video that explains how they teach this:
More than a colorful educational game, Talking Shapes is the product of grant-funded research and was developed by neuropsychologise, Dr. Jeannine Herron. The app introduces all 40 phonemes (English speech sounds) by helping children understand there is a relationship between the shape of a letter and the sound(s) of a letter.
You are likely familiar with simple short sentence books to help children learn to read. This is similar in that respect. The story is read to the student and then the app teaches the child which sounds go with with group of letters.
The whole lesson is followed up with games.
By the end of the lesson, the kids are reading the words!
In short, I think this app is a nice supplement to what you might be using to teach your child to read, but not a replacement for it. It makes sense for a phonics based program of reading instruction and would be a good educational activity for a child to reinforce what you are already teaching them, but don’t make the mistake of handing your child this app on an iPad and assuming that next week he will be reading. You still need to be involved. You still need a course of action not tied to technology.
Talking Shapes is available from the iTunes App Store for $5.99. It is compatible with the iPad and requires iOS 6.0 or later.
Be sure to check out what the rest of the TOS Homeschool Crew had to say about Talking Shapes!