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Grammar Wonderland (Elementary)
Pros: Choose from nouns, verbs, and adjectives plus four challenge levels.
Cons: No in-app instructions or teacher reports make this one just for practice.
Bottom Line: Three games may not engage students for the full curriculum but are a fun way to practice occasionally.
With all the customization options -- from concepts to skill level -- Grammar Wonderland makes differentiation within the classroom easy. Most of the students can use the same app for grammar practice, working at their level on the concepts they need to review. Since there are no teacher reports or in-app help or instruction, teachers will need to introduce the concepts and have students track their scores themselves or use the app just for practice and choose another tool for assessment. Also, keep in mind that playing the games isn't always easy or intuitive: The games require fast reading and quick motor control, so incorrect answers may say more about the interface's limitations than about whether or not kids grasp the concept at hand.
Editor's Note: Grammar Wonderland is no longer available.
After setting up an account with a first name and last initial, students choose to practice skills or explore worlds. Both options feature the same games: navigating an airplane to touch the correct clouds while avoiding obstacles and wrong answers; feeding a polar bear in space the right food packets; or tossing the right water buckets at a camel in a desert. When practicing skills, students choose between easy, medium, hard, or expert levels, and they select nouns, verbs, or adjectives as a skill. They can then choose a specific game from the three or a specific concept -- like possessive nouns or subject-verb agreement. The Explore Worlds section features a map that students progress through by successfully completing the game, earning one, two, or three stars based on their score. The games and skills covered are more random in the explore worlds mode, with players advancing through several stops in four different worlds.
Grammar Wonderland packs quite a bit of grammar content into its games, covering common, proper, concrete, abstract, singular, plural, and possessive nouns; adjectives, pronouns, verbs, verb phrases, verb tenses, irregular and progressive verbs, linking verbs, indirect objects, and subject-verb agreement. Each game handles incorrect answers differently -- the camel game offers only two options, so the correct answer is obvious; the airplane game penalizes incorrect answers by slowing the plane down a bit; and in the bear-feeding game, the bear gets a sick, sad look when fed the wrong answer. Kids do have to focus on several unrelated skills to play successfully, like reading the question, moving the controls correctly, and choosing the answer. The games move pretty quickly, so all of that can be distracting for kids, making the game frustrating. Overall, this is an amusing tool to bring some extra grammar practice to your classroom.