Children’s App Review!

Kids ABC Phonics Lite App Review

10340525-1369791402158There are so many applications out there catered to children. The application, “Kids ABC Phonics Lite” in particular, is directed towards children two to three years old. It is intended to teach children general phonics, identification of letters in the alphabet, the sounds and objects associated with them, matching shapes (puzzle pieces), and improve a child’s dexterity and hand-eye coordination through the “Pop Letter Bubble” game available through the app. Right off the bat the app identifies itself as an educational too for children through its title and the home page being a chalkboard. There are four different sections within the app. A “Learn Letter Sounds” section is available, where children are introduced to a cube which holds the letter on one face and three objects starting with that letter on each face of the cube.  The child is able to rotate the cube to each face containing an object or letter, in which the application would verbally identify the letter and the sound associated with it, as well as name the object. The “Build Letter Blocks” section of the application allows children to create the blocks they were once using in the “Learn Letter Sounds” section and allows for children to group “like” objects together. Within the “Pop Letter Bubbles” section, children are given the sound of a letter and then asked to pop the bubble they see which is carrying the letter that makes the corresponding sound. And finally, “Make Words” is a section which resembles its title. It is an area of the application, where children are presented with three letters which are on puzzle pieces and are asked to link them together in the right spot, so together they can spell a word. Once the word is revealed an image associated with the three letter word appears.

I chose to review this application because I wanted to find something that would aid my sister in her development. Right now she is at a point where she can sing the alphabet and can make the connection between the appearance of the letter and its sound, but not for all twenty-six letters of the alphabet.  So for that reason, I feel that this app is an excellent tool that she is able to use on her own. It is very simple to maneuver  through using the back and next arrows. Once putting her through to the “Learn Letter Sounds” section, I didn’t even need to explain or model what to do. Before I knew it, Sabrina was flipping the cube, repeating what the application was saying, and making connections between sounds and words, and letters and objects.


There were many great features within this application, which would benefit the ECE profession. For instance, it is very much child-directed and provides a number of learning outcomes, it gives children options and uses hypermedia (such as: images, audio, animations, and text) in all of its pages as it has images of objects, letters, different words, and animations in rotating cubes and within the bubble game, as well as audio either for pronunciation of letters, words, and congratulatory language. There is also hypertext being used to create a more non-linear design in connecting all of the sections and hypermedia within the app. Having connections formed in expanded directions allow for the children to maneuver through the application a lot more efficiently. This software allows for children to make the connections between icons and tasks and hold those connections within their working memory, which gives them a boost of confidence. This is a great tool within the ECE field as getting a child to build active parts of their brain, make connections, and build their memory aids in so many other areas of their development. Gaining all of these skills will help in other activities and tasks that educators may have for children down the road. For instance, building good memory and picture word associations can assist with tidy-up time after free play and knowing where to put everything. The bubble pop game congratulates the child in a positive manner after popping bubbles containing letters related to the sound of a requested letter. The congratulatory word usually begins with the letter that was correctly popped, such as “That was exceptional” (Intellijoy, 2013), after popping the bubble holding the letter “e”.  Kids ABC Phonics Lite, is excellent in that is provides tasks appropriate for growing toddlers, and it is diverse in the activities it offers. Looking at the software apart from the educational components the application has high-quality technical components as it is completely user friendly, the graphics are clear, all of the sections are neatly organized, a child is able to easily navigate through the application, and it is visually appealing. The “Learn Letter Sounds” acts as a prerequisite for the “Build Letter Blocks” section of the app, as it requires knowledge of the letters of the alphabet and what objects can be associated with them. In this case, we are moving from being given everything grouped to having to group it ourselves. This kind of resembles a “practise and review” (Goyne, 2000).

There are really no downfalls to this application, but there can be room for improvement. In terms of social interaction, there can be an educator or adult figure there as a reference for the child and to show them encouragement when fulfilling a task. However, there is no social interaction with any one through the application. It would be an improvement if the application had a section which resembles a face-to-face social network, where children can begin to play games and do activities with other children and parents. The software is fairly interactive on its own having  a bubble pop game, forming words activity and making letter blocks activity, however, it could use slight improvements. As far as animations go, each of the objects could be moving and interactive instead of just an image. When clicking on an object or forming a word the object could have actions associated with it and describe the object out loud. In terms of hosting a learning experience in an authentic and relevant context, I feel as though there could be more praise by saying “Hooray!” or having a song play instead of having an automated voice say “That was great” (Intellijoy, 2013) or nothing at all (Goyne, 2000).

11201105-1375278294156Some tips and recommendations that I would give an ECE who wishes to use, Kids ABC Phonics Lite, is to simply hand the tablet to the child you are working with and allow them to explore the app freely. If you notice the child is uninterested or is hesitating in what to do, then use guiding questions or better yet, model it for them. You will be amazed at how fast they go from poking at  the screen to dragging, clicking, scrolling, and jumping from page to page. Overall, this is a great app that is very positive, easy to use, and easy to access as it is offered as a free application for android devices.




Goyne, J.S., McDonough, S.K., Padgett, D.D. (2000). Practical guidelines for evaluating educational

               software. The Clearing House. 73(6), 345.

Intellijoy. (2013). Kids ABC Phonics Lite. Google play. Retrieved from,


2 thoughts on “Children’s App Review!

  1. Pingback: Can TV be good for your baby? | Play It Again Mummy

    • I completely agree with you! I believe televsion should be viewed as a good thing, as opposed to a bad. Although, the amount of screen time (a compilation of all digital devices containing a screen) given to any child should be monitored depending on their age (the younger, the less amount of time that should be given), it is the interactions that you create with your child during the episode and the quality of the show that makes or breaks the experience. If you sit a child down in front of a televion just for the sake of taking them off your hands for a while, that really doesn’t benefit the child in any way. Also, infants need to be educated. A lot of the times people assume that because they are so young they wont learn anything from intentional educational experiences. But, that is actually no the case. An infant has just as much potential as any other child at any other age. Its just a matter of giving them the attention they deserve and not under estimating their capacity to learn, regardless of how young they are. It sounds like your doing an excellent job in making the best experiences for your child!

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