Ever wanted to teach your little one how to spell “gargantuan” or “invisible”? Now you can with the help of Endless Alphabet, an interactive educational app compatible with the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.
This delightful app is created by the guys over at Originator Inc. (the core team from Callaway Digital Arts), the same artists who released BeBop Blox, Mr. Potato Head Create & Play as well as Mrs. Potato Head Create & Play. Kids from different age groups will benefit from its phonics-driven system. The whimsical animation is definitely one Endless Alphabet’s strong points, with the app’s adorable monsters performing actions related to the child’s chosen word. There’s no need to worry about stray, inappropriate content. Because it was designed to prevent accidental presses and is ad-free, it is even suitable for kids under the pre-kindergarten category.
Endless Alphabet’s system is simple yet clever. As soon as you launch the app, a slew of cute monsters parades across the screen to establish the cast of characters. After a brief loading screen, a menu opens up containing at least one word per letter of the alphabet. Forget run-in-the-mill, three-letter words found in alphabet flash cards. In this app, there are long, even tricky words with silent letters such as “hilarious”, “cooperate” or “gargle”.
Once your little one has selected a word, the game begins. Initially, colored letters neatly spell out the chosen word. Monsters then come running, scattering the letters across the screen. It is then up to the child to place the letters on their designated spots in the word. When tapped, the colorful letters come to life as monsters themselves, complete with stylized animations and accompanying phonics sounds. Once a letter has successfully been placed on the correct spot, its name is pronounced, reinforcing the word’s spelling.
The child is rewarded for completing a word by playing a clip of the app’s monster mascots. These animations demonstrate a word’s meaning combined with a verbal explanation. For instance, completing “forgive” shows a monster making up for messing up his friend’s building block tower and the friend hugging him back to show that there are no hard feelings. The narrator then pipes in afterwards, saying that to forgive is to stop being angry at someone. It’s a very straightforward system that takes the guesswork out of the equation by making a word, even its spelling, memorable audio visually.
We really loved the fact that the choices are presented by using illustrated word cards inside the mouth of a huge blue monster. Judging solely from the number of animated clips in the app, it is plain to see that a lot of effort went into making such a delightful, kid-friendly presentation. Plus, with so many supposedly child appropriate apps weaving in in-app purchases and ads, it’s pretty refreshing to see grown-ups only CAPTCHAs to access links and additional information about the software.
Overall, Endless Alphabet is stellar in terms of its educational and entertainment value. Kids, even adults, will undoubtedly fall in love with its storybook visuals. Because of its lighthearted delivery, it’s a great way to establish a love for language and spelling outside the classroom. Perhaps lowercase letters can be implemented in a sequel to provide visual assistance in proper sentence construction, but as it is, Endless Alphabet is already leaps and bounds above the rest. Oh, and did we mention that it gets continuous updates and additional words too?
We fully recommend getting Endless Alphabet if you have a little one who is just beginning to learn how to spell or can benefit from having a fun game supplement his language prowess.