Cambugs Phonics teaches children to say graphemes (such as ‘ch’ and ‘ue’). This is the second step on their journey to become fluent, confident readers — following our previous app, Cambugs Letter Sounds. Cambugs Phonics introduces eighteen new bugs, and a more exciting bug collection on iPad.

Cambugs has been developed by educational psychologists and parents. We know the importance of parents taking an active role in their children’s learning, so we developed an app where parents/teachers and children work together.

Cambugs Phonics is targeted at pre-readers, as well as struggling older readers. It uses evidence-based techniques that research has shown helps children develop their reading skills. You will notice in this app that children engage in lots of repetition — this is because this is a very effective strategy for ensuring that children remember and retain the sounds that they learn. Cambugs Phonics also has a timed test for ensuring that your child is able to remember their sounds quickly and fluently — this is because fluency is a key skill needed for becoming a confident reader.

◆ Developed by educational psychologists using teaching techniques that we know work.

◆ Teaches your child their sounds to a level where they can demonstrate confidence and fluency — key skills needed for later word reading and comprehension of text.

◆ Uniquely designed as a joint activity so that you are guiding your child through their learning. Think of it as being a bit like sitting down and reading a story with your child.

◆ When children learn a new sound they are rewarded with a ‘Cambug’. These bugs have been designed by children for children.

◆ Statistics screen shows you how many sounds your child knows and which sounds they need to learn. This is very useful if being used in a school setting.

Cambugs Phonics includes four activities :

‣ Sorting: Sort sounds into two piles (sounds your child knows and sounds that have yet to be learned ). This initial activity ensures the app is personalised to meet the specific learning needs of your child.

‣ Learning: Children learn a new sound alongside sounds that they know already. This is called ‘interleaved learning’ and ensures your child remembers their sounds.

‣ Timed Test: Children are timed to see how quickly they can say each sound. The app automatically puts letters that your child has not yet learned fluently back in the unknown pile to be re-learned at a later date. If your child likes the competitive element of the timed test, switch on the Time Challenge.

‣ Bug Collection: Your child will find a new bug in their collection whenever they learn a new sound and they can visit this at any time!

What's New

Version 1.6

• Adds scrollable example words in the learning activity, highlighting the sound being learned and helping to put the sounds in context for teacher and learner.
• Cambugs now appears at native size on the big iPad Pro.
• The timed test has been renamed to the fluency test.
• Fixes incorrect text shown when finishing the fluency test with all sounds known.

Ratings and Reviews

Fantastic phonic/literacy app!!


Love this app! It's been so helpful in helping my young boy to learn his phonics. Even his teacher has said how much he's improved in the past few weeks! He really struggled with some of the blends (or digraphs) as they are called in the app but the timed test has really helped his recognition of them. What's best is that he sees himself improving which is great! Love the Cambugs apps & looking forward to future ones! :)

Incredible best app ever


This app is absolutely amazing, my 5 year old daughter has improved with in 2 days of this magical app. It's been the best app I have ever come across and I have recommended to over 50 people all who have brought it and seen amazing improvement. I also happened to hear that children themselves drew the bugs. This app deserves to be app of the year!!!!!! THANK YOU CAMBUGS

The phonics app everyone needs!


Your second Cambugs app. An amazing literacy intervention in an app. Great step forward for teaching any child who needs to learn their phonics. It's so easy to use and it really works.


Cambridge Health Evaluation Consultancy Ltd
22.9 MB
Requires iOS 8.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.
Age Rating
Rated 4+
© 2013 Cambridge Health Evaluation Consultancy Ltd


  • Family Sharing

    Up to six family members will be able to use this app with Family Sharing enabled.

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