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SpellNow Level 3 AU

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A highly successful app utilising gamification to aid in spelling ability

Teacher Review

This is a very well developed app that has clearly been produced and written by experts in language, education and interactive gameplay. From just looking at the professional website it is clear to see that the developer has employed all of this within their product to produce a series of apps that are tuned into the learning of young people in the area of spelling and comprehension. It is part of a series containing 6 different levels that shares the same functionality but with different content.
On opening the app the user is given a couple of different options. One of these options includes a free trial to the app. This trial gives the user the ability to play/learn through the six different types of games that are available within the app. This part of the app certainly gives the user a really good example of some of the content available in the app but it certainly doesn’t take advantage of all that the app can offer. To access all parts of the app the user needs to set up an account with the developer and pay for a subscription. This is simple to do and considering the vast amount of content ‘a year’s worth of learning’ (as stated by the developer’s website) that the app has the price is certainly good value for money if you aim to take advantage of all the content. 
The added bonus of having an account and being able to access the wider variety of content is that you have the ability to track the progress of the user as well as the app itself actually personalising, to an extent, the learning for the individual. For instance upon logging in you have two choices of content. One is to have free reign over the content and choice at will what you prefer to learn and the other is the more personalised version. The personalised version has the user take a test and then adapts the content thereafter to the specifics needed for that user to improve and make progress. By having two options this works extremely well as it opens the possibilities for different types of users to access the app in different ways. 
If the user decides to select the option where they can pick and choose their content then they are taken to another screen where the content is organised into four terms. Within each of the terms there is then a further breakdown of 10 different topics which then has another breakdown of 6 different games to help the user access and learn the specific topic. On the menu where each of the topics are listed it gives a brief explanation of the topic i.e. ‘words ending –le, -el’ as well as the word list for that topic. This is brilliant is it allows, particularly in an education setting, the teacher the ability to pick the specific topic for specific students depending on their needs or the areas they need to work on. The app even keeps the scores that the user has achieved in each of the six games for that topic in terms of medals (bronze, silver, gold). In doing this it encourages the users to try and better themselves each time the play which in turn builds the competitiveness to continue using the app over a longer period of time. In fact the developers have certainly spent a lot of time thinking about how they can encourage users to stick with the app and keep coming back to it. By utilising gamification I feel they have achieved not only this sustained desire to use the app but have removed the potential ‘dryness’ of learning to spell. Students will want to use the app to enjoy playing it with the added bonus that they actually learning from it too.


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From the Developer

SpellNow Level 3 spells F-U-N!
This app transforms the way year 3 students develop spelling skills. We have gamified the learning experience so that your digital native has fun while mastering their spelling. Students are transported to the Stone Ages, full of fun and quirky creatures. Your child will love SpellNow Level 3 as it boosts their spelling achievement and confidence!

Unlike other spelling programs, SpellNow Level 3 delivers a truly personalised learning experience that targets each student’s learning needs. With a year’s worth of work, this app offers two distinct learning environments – ‘Open Road’ and ‘My Journey’. ‘Open Road’ allows students to freely navigate through 40 spelling lists across four school terms, while ‘My Journey’ features our unique adaptive learning engine to automatically detect students’ skill gaps before issuing them with a personalised learning pathway. Students are rewarded at each milestone, with special surprises along the way!

Written by experienced teachers, SpellNow Level 3 is aligned to the year 3 Australian Curriculum for English and provides students with the essential building blocks of spelling. It targets students in the transitional and complex stages of spelling, and helps them make the spelling-meaning connection that is necessary to become a good speller. Each spelling list is organised according to letter-sound patterns and word family groupings so students can make sense of the mechanics of spelling. Lists range from frequently used words with simple spelling patterns, to less frequently used words with difficult spelling patterns.

With SpellNow Level 3, students can work on their spelling all year around! There’s a bank of over 800 words, with each word used in a sentence to aid students’ understanding and help develop their vocabulary skills. SpellNow Level 3 covers a comprehensive range of spelling skills, such as, contractions, homophones, comparatives and superlatives, dropping ‘e’ and adding –ing, irregular plurals, inflectional endings (-y and –ly), suffixes (-ian, -y and –en), prefixes (un-, re-, up- and mid-), r controlled vowels (ar, ire, r, or and ur), diphthongs (au, aw, augh, ou, ow and ough), soft g (dge), past tense (adding –d and –ed), irregular past tense, tri-blends (scr, str, thr and squ), final digraphs (-ch and –tch), final sounds (-rge, -lge, -nge and –dge), long vowel (a, e, i, o and u) sound, words ending in long e vowel, silent letters (wr, gn and kn), open and closed syllables, compound words, and Latin, Greek and other language roots.

Six interactive spelling games cater to different learning styles – visual, auditory and kinaesthetic. Each spelling game stimulates students’ sensory skills by transporting them to a fun and vibrant environment where they interact with quirky characters. SpellNow Level 3 is a totally interactive and personalised learning experience that is fun and rewarding. Help your child begin their journey to spelling mastery NOW!

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