Learning To Read With The Joy Of Reading App

January 23, 2015 Published by

We are delighted to see Seven Academy launch the British English update to their Joy of Reading app this week. This is a wonderful app to help children learn the basics of reading. The Good App Guide recently reviewed this app and awarded it our prestigious Recommended status. The lack of British English was our main complaint, so this update is particularly welcome and results in an app we can recommend highly to parents and teachers alike. 

the joy of reading app 7As Nathalie Gauthier of Seven Academy Studio says: “The Joy of Reading provides a comprehensive approach to learning how to read. This app will take you on a guided journey from learning letter sounds to differentiating between short and long vowels.”

This app was developed with early reading specialist Robert Savage and it shows. The app clearly demonstrates an understanding of how children progress in their journey to learn to read and provides clear opportunities for progression.

The Stages of Learning to Read

In order to learn to read children need to progress through a number of stages. The first of these is to develop phonemic awareness.  During this stage children become aware that speech is made up of individual sounds and that these sounds are represented by ‘marks’ (letters) on the page.  The Joy of Reading is one of the few apps that addresses this stage by allowing children to explore initial sounds in words in a fun and interactive way.  

the joy of reading app 8To become readers, children next need to be able to identify which phonemes (sounds) go with which letters; through the tracing of letters on the screen in the Joy of Reading app, children are able to develop and practice this skill.  

Once children have phonological awareness and are able to match phonemes with letters, they then need to start to blend phonemes in order to make words.  The word cat, for example, is made of up three phonemes represented by three different letters: c-a-t.  Children must be able to recognise that they blend together to form the word cat.  The Joy of Reading app allows children to practice blending and rhyming with the help of the engaging on-screen characters.  The app even allows parents to add their own words, to customise the app with words that are particularly meaningful for them. 


the-joy-of-reading-app-6Once the children have mastered the first three stages they are well on their way to becoming readers. The Joy of Reading app takes the children further, allowing them to differentiate between long and short vowel sounds, recognise compound words and explore common high frequency words.

The Joy of Reading is an app that takes children on a journey from non-reader to emergent-reader.  The developers clearly recognise that learning to read requires certain skills to be learnt before progressing to the next stage; within this app children have to show a working knowledge of each level before they are able to progress to the next.        

Not only does this app support children so well, it also provides great tools for parents. The Joy of Reading allows parents to track their child’s progress in the parent area. Parents can also read about the pedagogy behind learning to read and they can be safe in the knowledge that their child is learning in a secure environment (no ads, no external links, no in-app purchasing, no social media access and no personal information requests.)        

Joy of reading appWhy do we recommend The Joy of Reading app?

This is a great choice for any parent or teacher looking to support their children’s reading journey through an app. We are delighted to be able to recommend it on the Good App Guide.

With apps of this quality, it is easy to see how Seven Academy were selected to be our app developers of the month for January 2015. 

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This post was written by Fundamentally Children

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