Flashcards for iPad is an app designed for the little tikes in your family. Preschoolers will really enjoy this $5.99 app from INKids. It uses the whole langauge approach to help them learn to read and spell.
When you open Flashcards there are three rows of icons. Tap one of the eight categories in the top two rows and you get a game for your child to play. It gives a picture and both spells and pronounces the name of the image. Tap the picture and you get a sound associated with that image. In the animals category it makes the sound the animal makes. Tap the speaker icon next to the word and you get the word pronounced again. You can tap it over and over to hear the word or sound. If you wait a few seconds it will automatically advance to the next slide with a new image and word. Or you can swipe the image to the left or right to go forwards or backwards.
The bottom three categories on the Home screen are for Word Match. It shows you an image and audibly asks, “Is this a …” and gives three options. For example, one screen showed a motorbike and asked, “Is this a spider, a motorbike, or a finger. It gave the sound of each of the three choices after it pronounced the word. If you get it right it says, “Yep, well done.” If you get it wrong it says, “Try again.” The second time it says, “Close. Give it another go.”
The Spelling Game shows you the image and has two rows of words. The top row is greyed out a little and shows the actual word. The bottom is the letters of the words mixed up and out of order. Your little guy or gal drags the letter to the upper row. When he or she does it pronounces the sound and makes a ding sound if you get it right. If you get it wrong it pronounces the letter you incorrectly dragged to the upper row and bounces it back down to the lower row.
The final option on the bottom row of the Home screen is Shuffle. It gives you words from any of the upper eight categories, so you are not using only one category at a time.
In the row at the bottom is a tiny toolbar. The first icon looks like a speaker and will mute the music that plays. The lock button locks the icon so your toddler won’t accidentally exit the game he or she is playing or get into the info screen and change the settings. This attention to detail is what makes this is a great app.
If you do open the settings screen, you will see choices for Sound, Record Sounds, Languages, Presentations, Feedback and About INKids. The really interesting features are the Record Sounds and Presentation screens. The first lets you record your own words for the sounds, so that the word will be said in your own voice. First listen to the original sound to know exactly what is being said. Then choose the red record button and record it in your voice. It will take you a long time to go through all of them, so I recommend just choose a category at a time.
The Presentation tab lets you choose how the app behaves. You can have the slides move automatically and advance them as fast or slow as you like. It ranges from 5 to 30 seconds.
I think Flashcards for iPad is a very good app. To help test it I showed it to my little nephew who is turning three. He absolutely loved it and his mother wanted to take my iPad home with her so he could play it. The only reason I am not giving it a full five fingers is the delay from tapping the home screen is a little long. My nephew got frustrated and kept tapping and tapping.
One improvement that would make this app useful for teachers is the ability to export the screen to an external display via the VGA/Dock adapter. I could see a preschool teacher using the app with her entire class hooked up to a projector.
You must be logged in to post a comment.