Using app Fun English as a Teaching Resource

Fun English, is an app developed by Study Cat Limited, and is available on both iOS and Android devices. A free download of 1 lesson and 6 learning games is available and additional lessons can be purchased.

Name of teaching resource
Fun English, is an app developed by Study Cat Limited https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/fun-english-language-learning/id428920239?mt=8
Weblink (if web based)

http://studycat.net or http://funenglishapps.com/ has more information.

Who should this digital teaching resource be used with? (ie year/grade)
Studycat Limited states that the app is aimed at children aged 3 to 10 years old (2013).
How should it be used? (e.g. individual, whole class)
The app uses games and fun activities to get children interested in learning to read, spell and speak English at an individual level (Studycat.net, 2013; Dunn, n.d.).
Which subject or learning area would it be most appropriate to use in?
This would best be suited to children learning English as a first or second language. It aims to improve their reading, vocabulary, listening skills, pronunciation and spelling (Studycat.net, 2013). It engages the child by being a fun game with colour and movement that can motivate and stimulate learning (Howell, 2014; Norton & Wiburg as cited in Marsh, 2014, p.188).
Identify the strengths of this teaching resourceIt is teaching the child English language skills as part of a fun activity, using the knowledge of concepts a child already possesses, allowing them to focus on the lesson (Dunn, n.d.). For example, the child may know the colour red, so having a red background, whilst saying red and showing the letters helps the child build on the concept of the colour. Finally, it has parental locks ensure security for the parents so that children cannot purchase additional modules (Studycat.net, 2013).
Identify any weaknesses of this teaching resource
It does require some teacher or parental scaffolding for younger children, as they may need to explain what you need to do with each game and to move the child through each level. You need to purchase additional levels. It has American and English accents which may make pronunciation more difficult, particularly if English is a second language (Dunn, n.d.). It does not develop creative thinking and is repetitive so limits engagement (Saxena, 2013).
Explain any ideas you may have for further use of this teaching resource
Provide the details of the app to parents so that the app can used at home with parental support.

References

Dunn, O. (n.d.) How young children learn English as another language. Retrieved from: http://learnenglishkids.britishcouncil.org/en/parents/articles/how-young-children-learn-english-another-language

Howell, J. (2014) Teaching with ICT: digital pedagogies for collaboration and creativity. Oxford University Press Australia and New Zealand.

Marsh, C. (2014) Marsh’s Becoming a teacher/Maggie Clarke, Sharon Pittaway. Pearson Australia.

Saxena, S. (2013) How can technology enhance student creativity? Retrieved from: http://edtechreview.in/trends-insights/insights/750-how-can-technology-enhance-student-creativity

Studycat.net (2013) Studycat drop Fun English prices to celebrate 2 million users. Retrieved from: http://studycat.net/fun-english-2-million-users/

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