LetterSchool is our favorite tracing app. As soon as your kids can use their index finger to trace, they can learn how to write letters and numbers. We even chose it as one of the best apps for one-year-olds.
At the start of the new year, a new edition of the app was released. Called Cursive Writing LetterSchool, it focuses on how to write letters and numbers in cursive. The new app has everything that makes LetterSchool great and then some.
What Makes LetterSchool Great
If you’re not familiar with LetterSchool, there are several things that make it such a great app. First, it lets kids learn how to write in three stages: watching, tracing, and writing. In the watching stage, all kids need to do is to tap the dots in the correct order to see how the a letter is written. Once they've known the correct sequence and strokes, they practice tracing the letter. After they can trace it correctly, they move on to the writing stage where they need to write the letter without any guidance.
Within each stage, kids may see different animations and sound effects that are fun and lively. These make the learning experience enjoyable. I often see my kids play LetterSchool for long periods of time without feeling bored.
LetterSchool allows kids to learn how to write letters in lowercase and uppercase. It also allows them to learn how to write numbers. The original app supports three different handwriting styles. It is also able to track the individual progress of up to three user profiles.
One of my favorite features of LetterSchool is its ability to show your handwriting as the default placeholder view, instead of the built-in letters. This is accessible once you have completed the first round of tracing all uppercase letters, or all lowercase letters, or all numbers. You can tell by seeing the background of the menu. If it’s blue, then you still haven’t finished the first round. If turns orange, you can see what your handwriting looks like on the main menu.
What the New Cursive Writing LetterSchool Offers
Cursive Writing LetterSchool brings all the great features from LetterSchool to help kids write in cursive. It also offers new features tailored to the nature of cursive letters. For example, cursive letters tend to have longer strokes. The lowercase L is a good example for this. It doesn’t have breakpoints, and must be written in a single stroke. Other cursive letters — such as the lowercase M — may have breakpoints that are interesting to learn.
The cursive letters also have different animations. For example, when the lowercase P is traced, a trail of lights can be seen. However, the long vertical path of the letter will be traced twice and cause the lights to look brighter on the path that is traced more than once.
You can also see horizontal guidelines on the splash screen of each letter. This allows kids to learn which part of the letter is on the upper line, and which is on the lower line. They will also see how cursive letters can be connected to one another to form a word.
Parents Need to Know
Based on the difficulty level, I think Cursive Writing LetterSchool is more suitable for kids ages 4+. For example, if you want to write the number 8 — either in the style of D’Nealian or Zaner Bloser — you’d need to write it in a single long stroke. If your kids have already mastered the original LetterSchool, this is the logical step to learn next.
Cursive Writing LetterSchool has a different voice actor that speaks a bit slower than the original voice actor. The app works flawlessly without any Internet connection. It doesn’t have third-party ads, in-app purchase, or links to social networks.
Wanna know what it feels like to play the new Cursive LetterSchool with the Apple Pencil on the iPad Pro? It feels amazing! LetterSchool is known to have the most precise handwriting recognition -- suitable for kids ages 2+ to learn how to trace letters. With the new Cursive LetterSchool, kids can also learn about cursive letters and how to write them. A full review is coming on the site. #FUGIAN_cny020816 #FotografiaUnited #FUllowTheGoldenRule #GeeksWithJuniors
Things I Like
One of the most natural way to test a tracing app is to test it with an Apple Pencil on the iPad Pro. And, I’m happy to report that Cursive Writing LetterSchool works great with this combination. In fact, I think it’s more natural to use the Apple Pencil to learn writing. If your kids like to use the app for long periods of time, the Apple Pencil may help prevent RSI issues that may be caused by using the index finger for far too long.
If you pay attention to how some of the animation is implemented, you’d appreciate the difficulty in doing a layered animation. For example, when animating a lawn mower going through the lowercase letter Y, you would see an intersection of two path that belongs to the same stroke. The app properly implements the lawn mowing animation by cutting all the grasses as it’s moving downwards — except for the one in the intersection — leaving the intersection to be mowed on the way back up.
Cursive Writing LetterSchool is definitely the best tracing app for your kids to learn how to write in cursive. While most formal education introduces cursive writing to kids ages 6+, I believe younger kids can learn earlier with the right app — such as Cursive Writing LetterSchool. If you’re already a fan of the original LetterSchool, this is a must-have companion app.
App was provided for our honest review.