Info
Published on: June 18, 2013
Social media pitch
Write to Read, the #1 app for iPad in Denmark, helps children learn to read by writing, launches in the UK. http://pr.co/p/000ypg
Summary
The Write to Read app for iPad is an educational app that helps kids from aged 3 upwards to learn to read by writing.

Developed by an award-winning Danish teacher, the app allows children to create and share stories about things they love - through words and pictures brought together on an iPad. During this creative process the kids become better at reading and writing.

WriteReader app is the #1 app in Denmark, and is now available in the UK from iTunes, priced £4.99. (See video below)
Details

A new educational iPad app from Denmark which is revolutionising the way young children learn to read has been launched in the UK.

Write to Read is aimed at children aged 3-10 years old, and is already the best-selling iPad app in Denmark.

Invented by a Danish primary school teacher and developed in conjunction with scientific researchers from the DanishSchool of Education, the Write to Read app is based on a novel ‘write to read’ approach to literacy.

Traditionally, children learn to read by first learning all their letters and sounds.  Write to Read turns this concept on its head – encouraging kids as young as three to write stories about things they love, and with a little parental help, learn to read in the process. 

To create their own book using the Write to Read app, children first take photos or upload images of their favourite things to the app.  Underneath each picture, they try and type a simple sentence, guessing how words might be spelt. As they type, they can hear the phonetic sound of each letter. A parent, carer or teacher then re-writes the text, helping the child see any spelling mistakes.

For very young children who cannot yet recognise letters, there is a recording function through which they can input short sentences and start to see how words are formed.

Once the book is complete, children can share their stories with relatives or friends by email.

Janus Madsen, the 41 year old Danish primary school teacher who came up with the idea for the app, comments:

“Our research shows that if a child starts writing and experimenting with words from an early age, their reading skills improve much more quickly.  We wanted to create something of real educational value, but also fun and easy to use – both for young children and their parents.  The beauty of this ‘write to read’ approach is that it unlocks children’s creativity and gets them excited about producing their own stories to share with others, rather than simply being passive consumers of other people’s creations.”

Write to Read app is available for iPad only and is now on the UK Appstore, priced £4.99. 

(See video below to find out how the Write to Read app works.)

Quotes
“Our research shows that if a child starts writing and experimenting with words from an early age, their reading skills improve much more quickly. We wanted to create something of real educational value, but also fun and easy to use – both for young children and their parents. The beauty of this ‘write to read’ approach is that it unlocks children’s creativity and gets them excited about producing their own stories to share with others, rather than simply being passive consumers of other people’s creations.”

— Janus Madsen, the 41 year old Danish primary school teacher who came up with the idea for the app.
Write to Read is a really good app for in the home and also in the classroom. It’s fun and enjoyable, but also they learn a lot from it – my daughter learnt at least five new words in the time that she wrote one new book. Because it’s fun and enjoyable the kids would probably really enjoying using this in the holidays and not really think of it as work. But you as a parent can be confident that they’re getting that input in terms of supporting their reading and writing and that they’re getting ready for going back to school. She can also read the story and listen to herself as she’s recorded it and then she’s able to share it with close members of the family, for example she wanted to share it with her Granny, and being able to press just one button and know that her Granny will be reading her story that night I think for Connie that was a fantastic thing to be able to do.

— Kate Conway – Mother of Connie, 5, and Daisy, 9
When children learn to speak, everything they do is acknowledged by their parents and their parents repeat what they say but in adult language. And this is the advantage of the app – it helps parents teach their children how to write in the same way as they teach them how to speak. What we do here is, instead of putting a lot of effort on the children’s minds we just make it fun for them. And we make it easy for them to play with the words and play with the communication.

— Jeppe Bundsgaard, Associate professor, PhD, Department of Education, Denmark
We’ve trialed this app in the nursery, and it’s working really well and the children are loving it. It’s a great educational app with which the children can make their own stories and they can write their own words. It can be used in all nurseries, primary schools and with parents at home.

— Lyndsey Tanner, Manager, Snapdragons Nursery
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