Reading comprehension apps can be a great teaching tool for struggling kids. If you’ve been following Healthy Family for a while you’ve already read some of my reading comprehension articles for parents and teachers. I’m a firm believer in direct instruction and peer tutoring, but using reading comprehension apps is another powerful tool for your tool bag. I’d like to see kids with reading comprehension problems use these apps in addition to other strategies. They can make reading practice fun and enjoyable for the kid who’s not too motivated to read. Check out my top ten list of apps available in the app store that can help your child improve reading comprehension skills.
There are quite a few reading comprehension apps for the iPhone and iPad available at the Apple app store. I’ve rounded up a list of 10 reading comprehension apps that touch on a variety of reading comprehension skills. To learn more about reading comprehension skills, view my poster images. I believe that reading comprehension apps can really motivate kids with auditory processing problems, learning disabilities, and autism.
The following reading comprehension apps will work with all kids, and some are especially good for kids with special needs. In such cases, I will note that in the app’s description. The following reading comprehension apps list is organized in alphabetical order rather than sequentially by best to worst. They are all very valuable apps to consider for your child. Choose on based on your individual needs and budget.
Our Ten Favorite Reading Comprehension Apps for Kids:
1. Jungle Journey by Teacher Created Resources:
for reading levels 2-5 grade and available on iPad IOS 4.3 and better. $4.99
Jungle Journey offers two reading comprehension apps (grades 2-3 and grades 4-5). It’s a fun way for middle elementary students to practice sequencing and cause and effect skills. Players journey through the jungle in these reading comprehension apps designed at two ability levels. They respond correctly to questions about Sequencing and Finding Cause & Effect to win the game. Kids learn essential reading comprehension skills identified in the Common Core Standards while playing games. There are two apps available to choose from. One app is for kids in 2-3 grade and one is for kids in 4-5 grade. Jungle Journey builds reading comprehension skills and uses 1 to 6 players, which makes it good for small groups.
2. Language Adventures by Smarty Ears LLC:
for reading levels 3-12 grade and available on the iPad IOS 5.0 or better $14.99
Language Adventures is another great tool in our list of top reading comprehension apps. This game is updated with additional content targeting categories, inferences, and wh-questions. Teachers will love this spin on speech and language board games. Language Adventures allows you to engage students in a contextual language intervention experience. Players will enjoy bright colorful graphics. Students will develop language skills in a variety of skill areas. The app allows you to select from three levels of difficulty. It’s appropriate for elementary through high school-aged students. This reading app uses school-based themes and vocabulary contexts. Teachers can save their students’ targets and progress over repeated plays.
3. Language Empires by Smarty Ears LLC:
for reading levels 4-6 grade and available on iPad IOS 5.0 and better $24.99.
Both the Language Adventures and Language Empires reading comprehension apps are all encompassing. The Language Empires app has a bit more game play features, however. Language Empires was developed by two Speech-Language Pathologists. Players practice answering how, why, and which questions, inferencing, vocabulary, predicting and figurative language, and sequencing. Select the players to start the game and then place each player on their target empire. Each empire targets a different skills set. Up to five players can be selected and each player can visit one or more empires at the same time. Some empires have levels that let you customize the level of difficulty within each target. Each location has 50 questions for a total of 400 questions in the entire app. As the students answer the questions correctly, they earn rewards. The rewards are saved and can be accessed at any time on each student’s profile.
4. Making Sequences by Zorten Software LLC:
for customizable reading levels and available on iPad IOS 6.0 or better $4.99
The Making Sequences application already has 15 image sequences for teaching story order when you first open it. But you can make your own sequences and add voice and text messages to them. This app can be used to teach daily living skills in a personalized and enjoyable way for special needs students. The app can also be used to teach story sequencing or help children master steps for completing a task. You can also share sequences with others using Dropbox. This app is also great for making short social stories. iPad users must turn on audio on the iPad for full functionality on the app. Teachers can opt to turn the numbers off on the settings section on the main page. Currently each game can upload up to 5 images of any size you desire.
5. Popplet from Therapy App 411:
for reading levels 3-12 and available on iPad IOS 5.0 and better $4.99
Popplet is a productivity app that also works as a mind mapping tool. It helps users organize ideas. You can capture your ideas, sort them visually, and collaborate with others in real time. Users can easily use the app to begin structuring the reading and writing process. The app can also be used to create graphic organizers, classroom visuals, organize material according to text structures (list, sequence, compare–contrast, cause–effect), and to practice sentence combining and complex sentence creation by connecting individual “Popples.” You can try out Popplet Lite for free. While the full version of Popplet lets you create an unlimited number of local Popplets, the light version will only let you create one.
6. Question Builder App:
for reading levels k-5 and available on iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad IOS 5.0 and better $5.99
Question Builder and Language Adventures are two great reading comprehension apps, but Question Builder has a kid friendly cartoon design. The app helps children learn to answer abstract questions and create responses based on inference. The app is designed to give learners practice in answering standard questions like who, what, when, where, why and how. When they pick the right answer they get a success scene. Parents will appreciate the comprehensive performance tracking, and kids will like the silliness of the scenes. Use of audio clips promotes improved auditory processing for special needs children with autism spectrum disorders or sensory processing disorders. Audio clip reinforcement can be turned on or off for non-special needs children. Question Builder helps kids with learning disabilities infer and think abstractly. Customization makes it adaptable for kids at various levels. Feedback is immediate and fun for users.
7. Reading Comprehension Camp:
for reading levels 2-7 and available on iPhone and iPad IOS 5.0 and better. $19.99
With multiple levels, 50 stories, and the ability to create personal stories the Reading Comprehension Camp app is perfect for students struggling with comprehension. Students with auditory processing disorders, language processing disorders, or learning disabilities will improve reading recall, organizing and sequencing skills. The in-app data collection makes this app perfect for progress monitoring. There are different levels of stories in this 1 app. There are all types of questions to answer after the story, inferences, and sequencing. It’s great that you can pick and choose which questions you want, depending on the student. You can also choose to have part of the text highlighted for students who need help.
8. The Opposites by Mindshapes Limited:
for reading levels 3-12 and available on iPhone and iPad IOS 5.0 and better. $0.00
Do you know what efficacious means? Just what exactly is the opposite of ‘bear’? Find out with The Opposites, on of our favorie iPad reading comprehension apps. It’s an exciting word game which challenges children 7 and up to match up pairs of opposing words before the screen is filled. The Opposites app helps children learn vocabulary and the corresponding antonyms by challenging them to match up pairs of opposing words in increasingly difficult levels. The game also helps children understand the importance of word context, and is an opportunity for them to think about how the words they use oppose other words. The Opposites consists of 10 different levels, each stage with a corresponding level of vocabulary. The app also offers a dictionary option that provides definitions and antonyms in a kid-friendly format.
9. Tools 4 Students by Mobile Learning Services:
for reading levels 3-12 and available on iPad IOS 4.3 and better. $0.99
Tools 4 Students offers 25 graphic organizers supporting common comprehension skills. Each organizer can be used again and again and be emailed, drop boxed, or saved as a PDF. The app covers all common comprehension skills. Students will use graphic organizers to practice cause and effect, main idea, sequencing, and context clues. Like other reading comprehension apps listed here, Tools 4 Students is pretty all encompassing. Unlike others, it doesn’t have a fancy graphic interface or game mode. But teachers can use story elements, characterization, KWL and other graphic organizers in their iPad enhanced classrooms. Students can save their work to their device or send it to an email address.
10. Understanding Inferences Fun Deck:
for reading levels pre-K to 4 and available on iPhone and iPad IOS 6.0 or better. $3.99
Unlike the other reading comprehension apps featured, this colorful Understanding Inferences app is directly tied to a real classroom flash card game. The app has 52 illustrated picture flash cards from the Understanding Inferences Fun Deck® by Super Duper® Publications. Select the cards and answer questions or complete sentences to help boost inferencing and reasoning skills. Each student looks at an illustration, and either reads the prompt or touches the screen to listen to the prompt. The student then says an answer and the teacher taps the green button if it’s correct or red button if it’s not. Teachers can also advance cards and players automatically by selecting the Auto-Advance option in the Game Options menu. This reading comprehension app can be paused and scored with a data graph, making it a nice app for the classroom.
That’s Our List of Reading Comprehension Apps! I hope you’ve enjoyed my list of the top 10 reading comprehension apps for the iPad. If you’ve discovered an additional app you’d like to share please do. If you find this list helpful please like us on Facebook, Google+, or Pinterest. There a share buttons at the top of this page. I’m glad you visited today, and hope you found the information on reading comprehension apps useful. Like our content? Please consider subscribing to our email newsletter. Once a month we send out our newsletter with summaries of the latest articles.