Common Sense Review
Updated December 2012

Duck Duck Moose Reading

Good early reading practice, but busy with a capital B
Common Sense Rating 3
Teacher Rating (1 Teacher Review) 3
  • Up to three students can track progress on one app, and unlimited guests can play, too.
  • Choose a letter to give to the animal in a letter identification game.
  • Feed the dolphin all the words that start with the same letter sound.
  • Kids can choose and decorate zoo habitats as rewards.
  • Kids can move up to new levels.
Pros
Verbal instructions are clear, activities are fun, and reporting is detailed.
Cons
The activities move rapidly, as does the music, which can be distracting.
Bottom Line
Duck Duck Moose Reading offers good skills practice, if kids can block out the distractions.
Dana Villamagna
Common Sense Reviewer
Classroom teacher
Common Sense Rating 3
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 3

The nine activities can be visually and intellectually engaging, as long as kids aren't distracted by the fast-moving pace and noisy sounds (which can be muted).

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer? 3

Exercises gradually increase in difficulty by level. Kids will learn by playing the nine Common Core-aligned activities and, when completing each one, will collect reward animals to include in a little zoo on the app.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students? 3

Verbal instructions provided. Reports are provided for parents or teachers to track which skills each kid is working on; percent completed; and consonants, short vowels, and long vowels mastered.

About our ratings and privacy evaluation.
How Can Teachers Use It?

In the classroom, teachers can use this app to provide students with practice in letter recognition and letter sounds for all consonants, as well as short and long vowel sounds. Duck Duck Moose Reading includes activities that focus on CVC words to help pre-readers and emerging readers build skills in noticing or combining letters to read words. Kids also practice following one- or two-step spoken directions, such as "Give any monkey the letters that say 'mmm,' like milk," as little ants march letters across the bottom of the screen. Teachers can check kids' progress on the parent reporting screen -- checking percent of levels completed, as well as consonants, short vowels, and long vowels mastered. Teachers can also visit the Duck Duck Moose blog to print out a workbook related to the app for even more ways to practice. The experience could be greatly improved by calming everything down a bit, in both visuals and sounds (teachers can nix the distracting background music simply by turning it off).

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What's It Like?

Duck Duck Moose Reading is a pre- or early-reading app that focuses on very basic skills, such as letter recognition and letter sounds. Nine activities engage kids by prompting them to do fun things with colorful cartoon animals. Kids feed certain letters to a pink dolphin, hand balloons with the words that start with a given letter sound to a penguin, match letter sounds when a giraffe eats the letters of the sound that the app asks kids to find, and more. When kids finish a level, they earn an animal for their zoo page. Duck Duck Moose Reading allows kids to create their own accounts (up to three kids, and a guest account) and, with a simple tap, return right where they left off from the last play session. Empowering, simple pre-reading fun.

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Is It Good For Learning?

As kids play, they move through levels and collect animals as rewards to make their own zoo scene. All data is saved on a Parent Page that teachers and parents can use to check kids' progress (up to three kids per app) and which language and reading skills based on Common Core standards kids have "mastered," based on the game's assessment. This app is not the best choice for kids who are easily distracted or who need a little extra time or visual space to think about answers. For example, if kids don't move quickly to an answer in certain games, the animal pictured will start making a rapid snoring sound. Still, for kids who are able to handle that level of quick, active visual and audio stimulation, this can be a fun way to practice essential letter and letter sounds skills.

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