Last year, I wrote about reader pens for teaching children to read and I contemplated getting one for Gavin. Well I didn’t end up getting one in the end and I’m glad I didn’t because it would have become redundant now that Gavin can read interactive books from the iPad and iPhone. Yup, this is another thing the iPad and iPhone is good for – interactive (talking) books. They can have the option of choosing to “read along” or to “read it myself”. And some books, like “The Cat in the Hat“, allow you to touch any picture in the book and it will read out the name of the item touched. This is how reader pens work, too.
The books are very affordable, too. For example, “The Cat in the Hat” costs US$3.99, which is about RM12. A soft cover copy of The Cat in the Hat would have cost about RM20. Here are some of the reader books that we have used:
You can also find character books:
- WordWorld has 4 ebook titles – Totally Terrific Duck, Duck’s First Sleepover, A Smile for Crocodile, and The Big Race.
- There are a number of Thomas and Friends books by Hit Entertainment and Callaway Digital Arts – Hero of the Rails, Misty Island Rescue, Thomas and Toby, Calling All Engines, May the Best Engine Win, Down at the Docks, and more.
With so many options available on the iPhone/iPad and at such a low cost (if you already own the device), who needs a reader pen?
Although Gavin prefers to have narration on given a choice, he has also read the books silently to himself when I’ve allowed him to play with the iPad without sound. It is a great way to inculcate a good reading habit. Even Gareth enjoys The Cat in the Hat reading app – he will select the app and listen to the story.