Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Reposting: A favorite app: iWrite Words

Back in 2012 I wrote about iWrite Words as one of my favorite apps. It continues to be one of my favorites, and so I thought I'd repost this write-up!

There are a lot of great apps which help kids learn and practice letter and number formation. However, like most Occupational Therapists, I am particular about how students form their letters and numbers.  Many apps form letters haphazardly, or at least not consistently from the top down.  iWrite Words starts letters just like a Miata... Top down baby!

Compatible on all iDevices, iWrite Words is 81.1 MB. The app retails for $2.99, and there is a lite version which is free.                 

iWrite Words dovetails nicely with the handwriting work I do with my students. The graphics and sound effects are engaging and playful. I have used it in sessions with a single student, and I've used it in groups of up to four students (each student using a iPad or iTouch). 

Upon opening the app the user is presented with options to trace upper-case, and lower-case letters, short words, and numbers.  The user drags a crab along the character outline.  If the user's finger deviates from the proper course, they hear a "boing", and start the character over. After tracing the character successfully, the user must drag the character into a spinning star shaped hole.

If the student is stuck, he can click on the play icon and see the character traced in animation. In addition, there are a number of ways a therapist/teacher/parent can custom tailor the app to the users needs. Customization includes many options, but to name just a few, the adult can change difficulty (tracing path size), and handed-ness.  In addition, the app allows for changing letter formation style. Without naming some of the more popular teaching methods, to the discerning eye, it becomes evident what they are offering. One can also change the gender of the voice that offers directions and affirmations.  

A final nice touch is the alphabet song which sings out with each tap on the screen.

Overall iWrite Words is a terrific app. It's appealing to my students, and an excellent tool to augment my handwriting work.

Happy therapy!

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