Apps: Encouraging Early Literacy with Bam Boomerang

I could go on and on about the importance of early literacy but since I’ve written so much about it in the past, I’ll just refer you to those posts…

…and share this terrific app from Open Reading instead:

Bam Boomerang by Open Reading

Recommended for children aged 3 to 6, Bam Boomerang is a reading app that encourages children to read out loud and offers them effective, one-on-one feedback that they need to practice their basic literacy skills. Best of all, it’s free!

Here’s how it works:

  1. Students play games, earn points, win virtual prizes and customize their own animated world.
  2. As they play, the students read letter sounds and words aloud while the app records their voice.
  3. Student recordings are sent digitally to one of our army of volunteer “Listeners.” Listeners use the app to give feedback on the accuracy and fluency of student recordings using a simple touch interface. Listeners earn virtual rewards and rankings based on amount and quality of feedback.
  4. The student hears his/her own recorded voice reading aloud while a cartoon character gives the student listener feedback on that recording, earning more points and virtual prizes as a reward.

Privacy and Safety:

Open Reading takes the privacy and safety of children using the app very seriously and have taken specific measures for the app:

  • They have partnered with PRIVO, a government-certified Safe Harbor program to oversee their privacy practices.
  • Volunteers do not know the name of the students they are listening to.
  • Volunteers cannot communicate with students.
  • Volunteers can only push buttons to indicate their feedback.
  • The feedback from multiple volunteers is combined and compared automatically to ensure that only accurate feedback is sent to students.

Get Bam Boomerang here.