In My APPinion: Syntax Workout

Friday, July 12, 2013
Appy Friday! The app I am reviewing in this post is called, Syntax Workout by Virtual Speech Center, Inc. I have been using this app for a few months now and it has been a hit with every student that I have used it with. Syntax is a big part of the language standards in the common core. What better way to address common core standards than with a little bowling?!
Virtual Speech Center, Inc. did provide me with a copy of this app, however, the opinions in this review are mine.
To get started, first enter your students' names into the app. This will allow you to track data and keep record of your students' progress. You are able to choose more than one student to participate. This is perfect for group therapy sessions, especially for the school based therapists!
After you select students to play, you then decide which targets you want to address for each student. 
This app includes the following targets:
-3rd-person singular 
-Do vs. Does 
-Has vs. Had 
-Is vs. Are 
-Was vs. Were 
-Subjective pronouns: I, you, he, she, etc. 
-Objective pronouns: me, you, him, her, etc. 
-Possessive pronouns: my, your, his, her, etc. 
-Absolute possessive pronouns: mine, your, his, etc. 
-Demonstrative pronouns: this, that, those, these 
Once you have made your syntax selections, you are ready to play!
The students are prompted with a picture and fill in the blank response. The app will read the sentence and answer choices to the students. I have found that for some of my younger students, it's helpful if I turn the sound off and read the prompt to them. That way I can modify as needed ("Is this a picture of a he or a she?")
After your student(s) answers a certain number of questions correctly, they get to go bowling! You are able to determine how many questions they need to answer before they can go bowling in the settings menu. I love that this app has the bowling reinfocement option. That way my kids feel like they have something fun to work for. I also like that the app caps the number of bowling turns the student gets before they have to answer more questions to earn more bowling balls. (That way I'm not the bad guy for making the fun stop :)
Syntax Workout also has a student report center that keeps track of student data and progress- always a bonus! All too often, I am excited about watching my kids play the game or I have to give them cues or assistance and I forget to take data. This feature helps eliminate that problem. 
Overall, this is a very fun app that is great for working on syntax goals. I have used this app as both a data collection tool and a positive reward at the end of the therapy session. What's better than students asking to work on pronouns? Well, they actually ask to go bowling :) Either way, I'm happy and so are they!

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