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  • The Monster Afang!



    Senior Year students at a Special Education school based in Wales, UK, have created a wonderful storybook with the help of Clicker 6 in order to raise money for charity.


    The school is called Ysgol Pen-y-Bryn (‘Ysgol’ is the Welsh word for ‘school’). Their interactive Clicker book, based on the traditional Welsh fairy tale ‘The Monster Afang’ is narrated by the TV presenter Aled Jones. The school also secured the services of harpist Rebecca McGrath for the music and artist Catrin Jones to assist with creating the images for the book.



    The finished article was launched at the Senedd National Assembly building , with launch party guests including our very own John and Ann Crick, the students’ proud parents, local schools, the Welsh Secretary of Education, and of course, all the very talented authors! A printed version of the book is currently on sale at the Senedd, with all proceeds going to Hope House Children’s Hospices.



    To find out more about Ysgol Pen-y-Bryn’s project, please visit our website, where you can watch a ‘making of’ video recorded by the school as the project took shape and download your own copy of ‘The Monster Afang’.



  • Have you had a chance yet to see the latest Powered by Clicker 6 resource? Clicker Foundations for Reading was launched this spring and it is a fantastic resource for your emergent readers. The series is an engaging and effective way for children to acquire the skills necessary to provide the groundwork for reading.

    Clicker Foundations is made up of three CDs – Noisy Bears, Rhyme Time, and Alphabet Animals. All of the CDs support the Common Core Reading Standards Foundation Skills by building children’s understanding of print concepts, phonological awareness, phonics, and word recognition. The series also provides lots of ways for the children to express themselves creatively.

    Noisy Bears focuses on sound discrimination. Children meet six bears and learn about all the sounds the bears make in different locations. Through a variety of fun activities, students carefully develop their listening skills by identifying individual sounds and sequences of sounds.

    Rhyme Time encourages children to recognize and play with rhyming words. They find matching rhyming pairs, create rhyming poems, and use Clicker 6’s sound recorder to explore patterns and record their own rhyming strings. The Rhyme Book and other activities use Clicker’s speech feedback with text-highlighting to reinforce the connection between the rhymes and the written words.



    Alphabet Animals introduces students to 26 colorful animals that all are unique characters. With a focus on alliteration and early phonics, children learn about the animals’ personalities, skills, preferences, and possessions. The CD increases children’s awareness of sounds, letters, and words through listening, reading, speaking, and writing activities.

    Clicker Foundations for Reading’s interactive activities are great for individuals, groups, and the whole class. They allow children to engage with sounds and language in a fun and motivating way. Find out more about the new series by visiting the Crick Software website.    



  • Clicker 6, Clicker Docs, WriteOnline and the new WriteOnline App, all offer tabbed banks of vocabulary.


    Here are some of the powerful ways in which these are being used to extend and improve students’ writing.


    In the examples below, tab headings act as signposts, giving the student an instant overview of the writing task. Each tab contains vocabulary suitable for a paragraph or section, and so as the student opens each tab in order they are guided through their writing. They are also encouraged, prompted, and reminded to use words appropriate to the style and content of the assignment.




    Provide banks of vocabulary to write a story



    Open each tab for vocabulary to write up a science investigation


    In the next examples, words are arranged so that the tab headings focus on particular vocabulary that you want the students to use in their writing. The tab headings direct the students so that they can make choices as they write and they are encouraged to use a wider vocabulary.


    You can also use the tabs to draw attention to individual or group objectives. For example, a general bank of adjectives will help with descriptive writing, unfamiliar or difficult topic words can be made readily available, while a bank of words appropriate to a particular genre will help the writer to become more confident in adopting the relevant style.



    Offer alternatives to overused words to encourage students to substitute more adventurous vocabulary



    Provide a selection of connectives to help students develop cohesion in their texts



    Give access to topic-related specialist vocabulary with which students may only just be becoming familiar


    Each tab can contain as many or as few words as you wish, so that the set can be tailored to the needs and development of your writers – 20 words may be appropriate, or three may be enough. The level of content is also of course open-ended - you may offer anything from complex science vocabulary at secondary level, to words to write about pets or families for young writers.


    Whether you are using Clicker 6, Clicker Docs or WriteOnline, tabbed word banks will focus your writers on useful vocabulary and give them a straightforward way to access the words, and so help them to improve and extend their writing.

  • Facebook Hints and Tips Videos



    We hope you’re all enjoying the summer vacation! Please get in touch with us if you have any questions or suggestions over the next few weeks, and remember to keep an eye on all our social media channels.

    Our Facebook page is a particular must-see if you’re a Clicker 6 or Clicker Apps user – we are posting brand new hints and tips videos every week! Since the summer began, we’ve added the following recordings to our page:

    • How to layer cells in Clicker 6 to create scenes with multiple images
    • How to close a Clicker Set in Clicker 6
    • How to change the word order when creating Sentence Sets in Clicker Sentences
    • How to export activities made in Clicker 6 into the Clicker Apps
    • How to add more than one word into a cell in the apps

    Become a fan of our Facebook page to access these and all the other videos we’ll be posting this summer. If you need some help with a particular feature of Clicker or the apps that hasn’t been covered, let us know what it is and it may very well be the subject of a future hints and tips video!

  • Support on cricksoft.com


    The Support section of our website contains a range of support materials for our software:

    http://www.cricksoft.com/support


    Each of our products has a collection of articles containing all sorts of information, ranging from explanations about various issues and their solutions, along with guidelines for common procedures, to helpful hints and tips. For example:

    • How do I Activate Clicker 6 via a Command Line?
    • How do I access WriteOnline through a Proxy Server?
    • No Speech can be heard in Clicker Sentences, Clicker Docs, or the WriteOnline Apps

    Additionally, you can find updated versions of your product to download. Over time, newer versions of the product may be released that include bugfixes, performance optimizations, and maybe even new features!

    The Support section also features documentation such as installation instructions and user guides in PDF format.

    So, if you have a support query, take a look at the Support section before contacting us as you could find the answer is already here at your fingertips!