Guest Post From the Developers of Reading Raven

We are delighted to share more information with Kindertown fans about our recently released product, Reading Raven for iPad. With our initial 1.0 release, parental feedback has been extremely positive and since its release less than a month ago, Reading Raven has consistently ranked among the top 200 paid apps in the Education category of Apple’s App Store.

The idea that sparked the creation of Reading Raven came when Early Ascent founder, Scott White, was researching how he could best teach his five year old son to read. The apps he found felt one-dimensional and narrow, while the workbooks seemed effective, but dull. Thus Reading Raven was developed to combine the high educational value of workbooks with the unique user experience of touch screen mobile devices in an educational game format that is fun and engaging.

Reading Raven is phonics-based, and unlike other learn-to-read apps, even phonics apps, it takes children all the way from learning foundational pre-reading and reading skills to reading sentences and very short stories. The lessons include nearly a dozen different types of games and activities, including printing practice, word building, rhyming games, and reading aloud activities. Lessons are staged in a natural progression so that everything a child learns builds on what they have learned before and each success leads to another.

Working closely with experienced educators, the Reading Raven curriculum was adapted from a highly successful early-learning tutoring program. As part of this adaptation, the Reading Raven team has made full use of the iPad’s ability to engage children’s senses with the interactive touch screen and superior-quality voice, music, and visual content. Many of the activities dynamically adapt in speed or touch tolerance, based on individual children’s responses, so that the level of motor control is set at just the right level. Young children can even record their own voice while learning to read words and sentences and hear feedback that helps them improve their pronunciation.

Another key part of this adaptation was the involvement of our team of artists and designers who transformed traditional workbook activities into lively learning adventures that captivate children’s attention. The Reading Raven character was created as an “adventure guide” to accompany children through these various reading lessons, each set in a unique, playful setting with a new cast of delightful characters. During these learn-to-read adventures, children encounter everything from fly-eating frogs and ball-balancing seals to Yeti, the abominable snowman. By transporting kids into a world that stimulates their imagination and challenges them at just the right level, children avoid any anxious feelings of being pressured or tested. Instead they feel empowered to learn in a way that feels natural, fun, and rewarding.

Creating a reading tool that young children find enjoyable is a key goal of ours, but even more important is to give every child a solid foundation of skills to become able and confident readers. Children learn in different ways, and each child has unique strengths and struggles. Reading Raven acknowledges children’s individuality by allowing parents and teachers to customize their child’s learning experience by selecting the activities that meet each child’s needs. Instead of a one-size-fits-all approach, Reading Raven can become a personalized tutor who can reach kids who are just learning the alphabet to kids who are ready to read sentences. Our hope is that no matter where kids begin their journey with Reading Raven, they will be able to grow their reading skills at a pace that feels comfortable for them.

Check out this video to see Reading Raven in action:

Yet there is more we can do. We are actively working to make Reading Raven even better and getting quality feedback from parents and teachers is vital to ensuring Reading Raven is effectively meeting the needs for as many budding readers as possible. We encourage you to send any thoughts, suggestions or feedback to: feedback@earlyascent.com. You can also stay connected by visiting our Facebook page or following us on Twitter at @readingraven.

Happy Reading Adventures!
— The Early Ascent Team

(KinderTown: Read our review of the Reading Raven educational app)

 

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