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What does each game cover?

There are three Teach Your Monster to Read games to play, covering 2 years of the reading journey. Please read through their educational content to decide which game is right for your child.

Game 1: First Steps

For children just starting to learn letters and sounds.

First Steps gives children extra practice for whichever phonics scheme they’re using in school.

  • Practice for 31 letter-sound combinations:
    s, a, t, p, i, n, m, d, g, o, c, k, ck, e, u, r, h, b, f, ff, l, ll, ss, j, qu, v, w, x, y, z, zz
  • Blending and segmenting practice with CVC words
  • The first 6 non-decodable (‘tricky”) words

Get a full overview of First Steps (pdf)


Game 2: Fun With Words

For children who are confident with early letter-sound combinations and are starting to read sentences.

NB: If you’re not sure, try game 1 first.

Fun With Words gives children extra practice for whichever phonics scheme they’re using in school:

  • Practice of new letter-sound combinations:
  • ch, sh, th, ng, ai, ee, igh, oa, oo, ar, or, ur, ow, oi, ear, air, ure, er
  • Lots of blending and segmenting practice with CVC, CVCC, CCV and CCVC words
  • Practice of non-decodable (‘tricky’) words:
  • he, she, the, to, we, me, be, was, no, go, my, you, they, her, all, are, said, so, have, like, some, come, were, there, little, one, do when, out, what
  • Reading and comprehension of sentences, from short ones such as “Get the cat” to longer ones such as “Can you get me an owl that is not green or red?”

Get a full overview of Fun With Words (pdf)

Game 3: Champion Reader

For children who are confidently reading short sentences and know all of the basic letter-sound combinations.

Important: Champion Reader is our most advanced game and children should be ready to play it.

They must:

  • be able to read and understand short sentences like: ‘Go and get me a black bee for my jar,' she said.
  • have secure knowledge of the following graphemes / phonemes:
    s, a, t, p, i, n, m, d, g, o, c, k, ck, e, u, r, h, b, f, ff, l, ll, ss, j, qu, v, w, x, y, z, zz, ch, sh, th, ng, ai, ee, igh, oa, oo, ar, or, ur, ow, oi, ear, air, ure, er

The game gives children extra practice for whichever phonics scheme they’re using in school:

  • Introduces alternative spellings of sounds (e.g. /ai/ as used in eight and they)
  • Introduces alternative pronunciations (e.g. i as pronounced in fin and find)
  • More non-decodable (‘tricky”) words
  • Lots of reading for meaning and comprehension - from sentences to magical little books

Get a full overview of Champion Reader (pdf)

I was stunned to see how much they enjoyed this. It blew me away.

Matt Lovegrove, Cippenham Primary School

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Why Play?

  • Covers letters and sounds to reading full sentences.
  • Designed in collaboration with leading academics.
  • Computer version is 100% free.

FAQ

Why is the computer version free?

The game has been funded by the Usborne Foundation, a charity set up to support initiatives to develop early literacy.

Our mission is to help as many children learn to read as possible. The computer version is 100% free and we put profits from the app back into the Usborne Foundation, to continue to create new and exciting ways for children to learn.

The charity was founded by Peter Usborne MBE and his children, Nicola and Publishing, one of the world’s leading children’s book publishing companies and Children’s Publisher of the Year 2012. He was previously one of the founders of the magazine Private Eye.

What age is it for?

The game is for children in the first stages of learning to read, or for older children who need a bit more practice. Read more details about the three games.

How do children learn from the game?

The game takes children on a magical journey, meeting colourful characters along the way and collecting fantastic rewards. When children are engaged, they’re motivated to learn.

As they progress, they rehearse a range of essential reading skills; matching letters to sounds, blending, segmenting, tricky words and reading full sentences.

Find out exactly what the game covers.

Will it work on my device?

The game runs on any normal laptop or desktop computer (including Apple Macs) and the app works on iPhone, iPad, Android and Kindle tablets.

Who are The Usborne Foundation?

Peter Usborne is the founder and Managing Director of Usborne Publishing, one of the world’s leading children’s book publishing companies and Children’s Publisher of the Year 2012. He was previously one of the founders of the magazine Private Eye, and was recently awarded an MBE for services to publishing.

Testimonials

"I was stunned to see how much they enjoyed this. It blew me away."

Matt Lovegrove,
Cippenham Primary School

"The kids absolutely love this game - and they're learning!"

John Hole,
Wray Common Primary School

"This is a fun and engaging way to help your child learn to read. My son warmed to the game quickly and didn't want to stop playing it!"

Sarah Fox,
mum to Leon aged 5

This is a fun and engaging way to help your child learn to read. My son warmed to the game quickly and didn't want to stop playing it!

Sarah Fox, mum to Leon aged 5

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