As I was struggling to find an app to help my 5 year old stay on top of his ABCs while on school break, Niki Words came across my path. While it can surely help my son, this app can do so much more. This app comes with settings that make it completely customizable and able to grow with your child. It is a versatile reading app for kids of a wide age range.
In Playing with Words, kids choose between 18 groups of words with choices like animals, fruit, and clothes. Kids are presented with a picture of an item and it is pronounced to them. Kids then simply drag letters from the bottom to spell the word at the top. With the right settings, this area can accommodate the need of a beginning alphabet learner to an older child brushing up on some spelling skills.
The Crossword section is pretty self explanatory except that this crossword is one, with the right settings, that can be completed by any preschooler regardless of skill level. It can be a real head scratcher of a picture crossword for the older kids or simply an exercise in putting the letters where they belong in the puzzle for the younger ones.
In Magic Blackboard kids can play around with the different colors (white, rainbow, red and blue) and styles (uppercase, lowercase, cursive) the app provides to their heart’s content.
The settings, as have been mentioned, are the real gem when it comes to this app. Parents can choose the layout of the letters, how many letters are available, if kids can have visual hits, if kids have to complete a word from left to right, whether the letters themselves are pronounced when touched or if the corresponding phonics sound is heard instead. Parents can also choose to let kids make certain changes while playing such as color scheme.
I love that all my kids, age 5 to 10, can use this app in different ways. The customization settings allow my youngest to practice letters and sight words, my middle child can test her spelling and crossword ability, and the oldest (with the language options) can learn some Swedish words to impress her uncle since he is taking a class (you can also use Italian or French). Also, once my youngest completely knows his alphabet, I plan on changing the settings to the phonics pronunciation so it can help him learn to read.
Update: The app is now including Spanish. Wonderful added bonus, if you are trying to expose your kids to Spanish, or if you are a bi-lingual family.
Niki Words is available for iPAD. It is $4.99 on App Store.
If you would like to check it out or purchase it, please use the App Store link provided below. The cost is the same to you, but iGameMom gets a small percentage. Thanks for your support! Note: The link works for all countries.
Today’s app is reviewed by Celina, the NerdyBaker. Celina is a wife, a mother of three, a self-proclaimed nerd, lover of movies, science, and science fiction. She is always looking for fun and educational content for the iPad and iPods.