Clicker and Foundational Skills

Reposted with permission from Crick Software US Blog

Clicker is a fantastic tool for tackling the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts in elementary schools. Over a series of blog posts, I am going to explore some of the Clicker features and resources that are available to support all strands of the Common Core. Let’s start with Foundational Skills.

LearningGrids is full of Clicker sets that “are directed toward fostering students’ understanding and working knowledge of concepts of print, the alphabetic principle, and other basic conventions of the English writing system.”1

On-screen books like Getting Ready for School – Read make use of Clicker’s integrated speech feedback with highlighted text. These features reinforce reading conventions such as left-to-right word order. On-screen books also provide great opportunities to develop reading fluency. On LearningGrids, there are books to accommodate a wide range of reading levels from emergent readers to fluent, independent reading. And all books can be adapted to fit the needs of individual students, such as simplifying text for struggling readers or removing the recorded speech to ensure independent reading.

Onscreen book pages showing a butterfly pushing itself out of the chrysalis.


Clicker’s speech recorder tool is available in on-screen books, allowing student to practise their reading or to keep a record of their reading accuracy and fluency. The sound recorder is also perfect for phonological awareness activities. With activities such as Listen and Say – Phonemes and Find the Vowel Sound, students identify the phonemes and record the segmented sounds.

Clicker onscreen book pages showing sound recorder and symbols of various animals and insects including an ant.


The extensive picture library that comes with Clicker makes it easy to create phonics and word recognition activities. With Clicker’s Quick Page Matching Wizard, you can easily create word and picture matching activities like The Head – Read and Find. In another matching type of activity, CH Digraphs, students find pictures that have that specific digraph and can then record themselves reading the words.

CH Digraphs screenshot showing symbols of words beginning with ch including chick


And don’t forget to check out Clicker Foundations for Reading – it is a wonderful “Powered by Clicker” series that has lots of activities to support the Foundational Skills.

1 National Governors Association Center for Best Practices & Council of Chief State School Officers. (2010). Common Core State Standards for English language arts and literacy in history/social studies, science, and technical subjects. Washington, DC: Authors, 15

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About Tania Johnston

Tania Johnston – Curriculum Specialist, Crick Software

Tania Johnston was a primary teacher and an ICT consultant prior to joining Crick Software in 2005. As a curriculum specialist with Crick Software, she uses her classroom experience to develop curriculum content for LearningGrids, as well as more extended resources for the Powered by Clicker series. Tania has delivered presentations and training events at conferences in the UK and the US on the effective integration of technology throughout the curriculum.

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