Teacher Review for The Flying Alphabetinis -- A Fingerprint Network App

Visually engaging, but cumbersome at times with minor glitches.

Tamara L.
ITRT - Instructional Technology Resource Teacher
Hanover County Public Schools
Ashland, United States
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My Subjects English Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies, Arts
My Rating
Learning Scores
My Students Liked It Yes
My Students Learned No
I Would Recommend It No
Setup Time Less than 5 minutes
Great for Individual
Student-driven work
Great with Advanced learners
Low literacy
How I Use It
In a classroom, this app could be used to reinforce identification of basic sight words as several picture clues are provided for students to locate in the word jumble. This could be an independent center activity (Play as a Kid Mode) where students located all the words, then took a screen shot of their word list and added it to a class Dropbox folder. All words would be spelled correctly, of course, but the data from the screen shot would provide information about students knowing how to make various words plural or use prefixes/suffixes in their word find. The app also provides a Play as a Family Mode which has potential for favorable teacher use (includes charts of progress and other information); unfortunately, I could not get the links to work to complete the profile. When I chose Play as a Kid mode, I could not change to Family Mode. The visual animations were engaging, but I was discouraged to see the delays in app start up (it always checks for updates when you first open the app which can take several seconds up to one minute to load).
My Take
Overall, I was a bit disappointed in this graphically pleasing app. I loved the online safety features of the built-in avatars and screen names, but was quickly bored as I waited to be paired up with another app user (no vs. computer option available.) When I exited the app and re-entered, I was dismayed to discover the first screen being an in-app purchase page (where students have to click "No Thanks" to continue on to the game). As an educator, this inconvenience could be a deal-breaker when expecting students to use the app independently, especially for iPads that are not setup and maintained by the classroom teacher. I liked that you could stop the game timer and earn "stunts" for more time, extra hints, etc. but it would be nice if this app allowed students to wirelessly connect with other students or choose from a list of students programmed by the teacher. For home and personal use only, this app might receive a higher rating.