The Sounding Out Machine is an Assistive Reading Device. It helps children focus on challenging words in their texts, and then models how to sound out those words.
Teachers love to sit next to students and listen to them read. They model how to chunk words, break them into syllables and use phonics skills to figure them out. But teachers don't have enough time to sit with all their students as much as they would like. The Sounding Out Machine does for students what a teacher would do if I she were sitting next to them!
Children use the Word Window to isolate and enlarge a difficult word. Then, just like a teacher sitting next to her students, The Sounding Out Machine models how to chunk the word into syllables and use phonics skills to blend the phonemes together and sound out the word. Children can use their own digital word card to practice and become independent.
STUDENTS WHO BENEFIT
•Students who need modeling in chunking words and using phonics strategies to sound them out.
•Students who report their book page looks like a "sea of words" - the Word Window helps them focus in on challenging words.
•Students who have difficulty coordinating an index card on a book page.
•Students who prefer reading on a screen.
•Camera mode - take a snapshot of the book page.
•Library mode - load in page snapshots from the photo library.
•Typing mode - type in challenging words.
TRACKING STUDENT WORK
Teachers love the way The Sounding Out Machine emails a report of students' challenging words. They can use this list for instruction or for creating personal spelling lists for their students.
NO ROOT WORDS NEEDED
Figuring out the root of a word in order to use a dictionary can bog down many young readers. So The Sounding Out Machine allows children to submit a word in many forms, such as "reply," "replies," "replied" or "replying." This allows them to quickly continue with their reading work instead of getting stuck.
Children who need extra support can use a digital card or marker to track the text as they read, in the same way they might use an index card to focus on a line of text. This can be customized in many ways. There are many color choices for word cards, and Shared Reading mode allows children to set a small pointer at the end of each line, just as they might see during a Shared Reading lesson.
The keyboard is also customizable, including a regular (qwerty) keyboard or an ABC-order option.
VARIETY OF PHONICS MODELS
The app supports various phonics models, including Blended or Synthetic phonics.
The app has an extensive dictionary of over 80,000 words, including multiple forms for each root, ("reply" "replies" "replying") and names ("Huggins," "Lorax"). We will continue to expand the dictionary in future updates, so be sure to let us know if you discover a word that needs to be included!
Updated for latest iOS
Ratings and Reviews
Challenging for young kids but good for older readers
To use this app you must take an image of the page you are reading. My kids found this difficult and they were almost never clear. You have to type the word from the box you select no matter what so I am not quite sure the point of the photograph. It doesn't know he word on the page you have to tell it.
I do like how it slowly sounds he words out and breaks them down. Different colors are used to help show he different parts of the word. The words are saved and the list can be emailed so adults can track a students progress.
I think this app is intended for older children who are good readers and just don't know maybe one or two words per page. I was hoping it would work for my budding reader but it requires to much I put from him with knowing very few words. Will save for later though
Needs more work
We downloaded the app and the colors are very vibrant and welcoming. When we tried using the "teach me" button initially it was not clear that we had to use our word card, once we figured we need to use a word card to get a word to type in we were not able to see the word card because it was off to the left side of the screen and we were on able to move it to the center to read the words.
It was great to type in the one word we could see (all) and hear the iPad voice sound out the letters and then teach us how to say that word
Helpful for struggling readers
I tried out this app and can see its use to help readers when they come to a word they don't know. I like how it can color chunk out parts of words for older readers. I found typing in the word was the best way to use this. When I took a picture and put a box around it, I still had to type the word in, so that was disappointing. I can also see using this as part of a phonics lesson in small groups of beginning readers.
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.