Wordshark is an indispensable literacy tool for home education, catering for an age range of 5 to 14. It is particularly well known for helping children with dyslexia, and can be adapted well to the learning needs of each child. Read more about using Wordshark for dyslexia and other special needs.
Spelling lists – There are over 10,000 recorded words and sentences in Wordshark, grouped into ‘courses’, including one mapped to the National Curriculum. You can work through each of the courses systematically or dip into them as and when you have specific words to learn.
More than 60 games – The games and reward activities provide variety. There are also options and settings to choose from, making the program extremely adaptable.
Add your own words – This facility means that you can learn any words that you like, for example, associated vocabulary if working on a history or science project. You can add definitions and pictures, or even add words in other languages.
Tracking progress – Wordshark records what your child has been working on and will tell you, for example, if there are any words they were finding particularly difficult. For added reinforcement, it can really help to make your own lists of the most tricky words.
Tips for using Wordshark
- 10-15 minutes per day is ideal.
- Choose the right level. If you are unsure of where to start, use the ‘Test’ facility.
- Keep it varied. Use the ‘recommended games’ tab to see the most suitable games for your list and make sure all skills are covered.
- Earphones can help if there’s ambient noise, especially when working on phonics.
- Use the search box to find words, letter patterns and spelling rules.
I really enjoy the games, especially the spelling game. I like the fact I can try it by myself first and if I get it wrong, it tells me the correct answer. I love all the mini [reward] games, especially the driving games, and trying to catch the jewellery from the Octopus and mermaids, which you can attempt to do when you spell a word correctly. I’m dyslexic and Wordshark has really helped me to improve my spelling.
Coral, 9 – Student, home educated
I’ve learnt lots of new words and continue to build my word bank. Being home educated, I’m able to log on and complete sessions and take as long as I like to learn. This really helps me take in the information, as there is no time pressure. WordShark has helped me to build my confidence in learning to spell, read and process information. I’m dyslexic and recommend this to other children with dyslexia.
River, 11 – Student, home educated
As someone who homeschools a son with Dyslexia, I have found the Wordshark program to be highly motivating, effective and well organised.
M.Eaves – Parent