Adapting to each student

The program’s games, content, options and settings have been developed so that you can tailor Wordshark to the needs of each student or for specific classwork. Each student can work at the right level for them, gain confidence and make fast progress.

Choose from the 10,000 words…or add your own

  • Search for words, letter patterns and spelling rules.
  • Choose from the 11 ‘courses’ such as ‘National Curriculum’.
  • Add your own words/pictures/recordings and more. This option is one of the the most popular features of Wordshark!

Personalise Wordshark, for example:

  • Choose the background colour to make it easier to read words on screen.
  • Change the direction of words in a word search or the speed of sharks swimming.
  • Switch to different graphics within a game or draw your own maze.

Wordshark with certain user groups:

Secondary school – It’s a good idea to use the Secondary subject lists and sentence games (and their worksheets) as they put the words into context and help with meaning.  You could also use the ‘Wordshark’ course for general spelling as it provides a very structured approach, or you can add your own lists and turn them into description lists. In terms of using the games, you have the option to exclude anything that looks too ‘young’.

Dyslexia – The games format, structured lists, phonic approach and constant reinforcement through different games means Wordshark is perfect for students with dyslexia. The Wordshark course and High Frequency Words course are both useful for this group. Tick the ‘Use phonics’ box, and untick it at any time to play the whole-word games. It is easy to turn down or turn off the groans and beeps that accompany mistakes. To give ‘thinking time’, it may also be helpful to reduce the speed within the games, and begin by playing only the ones with no time limit.

Dyspraxia – As mentioned above, turning game speeds down or choosing games with no time limit can help. Other features for students with motor skills difficulties include automatic shark catching in the Shark game, and reducing the complexity of the Maze game.

ASD and ADHD – There are a few ways to reduce stimuli in Wordshark. For example, you can tick the box for static games icons, and set work with a restricted number of lists and games. Using headphones is also advisable, especially in a busy and/or noisy classroom.

Printing resources

Printing options under ‘Help’ in the main menu include: worksheets from games, word lists flashcards, progress charts, and certificates of achievement.