Popwords! is a free app for iPhone/iPod and iPad for practising vocabulary and spelling. There are four different ways to play the game – Classic, Practice, Puzzle and Daily Puzzle. It’s a good idea to start with the Practice section of the app so that the pupils can get used to the way the app works. You are given six rows of five letters on tiles. The aim of the game is to find as many words of at least three letters as you can. You make words by tapping or swiping letters in sequence. A word can move in any of eight different directions and can also bend. The longer the word you make, the more points you earn. When you create a word, those letters disappear and all of the letters move downwards creating more space for other letters to appear ensuring you are still working with thirty letters.
When pupils become accomplished in the Practice section, they can test themselves in the Classic section. In this section, you start in Level 1 and you are racing against the clock to find words. When the green bar on the left has emptied, the time is up. When the blue bar on the right reaches the top, you can move onto the next level. There are an infinite number of levels which will increase in difficulty. This will ensure that pupils can work at their own pace and challenge themselves at their own level.
The Puzzle section is similar to the other sections, except that tiles are not replaced as you create words, so you only have the thirty tiles from which to create words. You can earn double points by clearing all of the letters. The Daily Puzzle section is similar except that you can compare your score to others who are playing the same game. Scores are posted via the internet.
This app is free for both iPhone/iPod and iPad, but there is an in-app purchase of €1.79 that allows you to play the game without any advertisements. I’m not aware of this app being available for Android devices.