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ZOOM Read, Write & Type!
Sold Out (Win95/XP/Mac 7.5.1-9.2) (Jewel Case) (READW&TDJ)

The Learning Company


Ages 6 to 8


4 stars (out of 4) from HomePC

89 from FamilyPC

3 stars (out of 5) from CD-ROM Today

Let Your Fingers Do the Walking

Read, Write & Type! makes learning to read and write fun and interactive with:

  • all 40 speech sounds linked to typing to let children write anything they can say.
  • six engaging activities at each of the 40 levels, that build reading and phonics skills as players write on the computer.
  • a carefully designed approach to help players swiftly progress from typing single letters to creating whole words, phrases, and stories.
  • lifelike talking hands that provide spoken help, demonstrate each keystroke, and guide children through the learning process.


Windows: Windows 3.1/95/XP, 486/66 or better, 4MB available RAM, 4MB of virtual memory, hard disk with 2MB free disk space, 2X or higher CD-ROM drive, 256 oclor SVGA, Windows compatible sound card, mouse. Windows compatible printer recommended.

Macintosh: Macintosh and PowerPC, System 7.5.1-9.2, 68040/16 MHz processor or faster, 4MB RAM, 5 MB free hard disk space, 2X CD-ROM drive or faster, 256 color graphics display, printer recommended.


HomePC, March 1996

"The concept is relatively simple: Vexor the Virus has stolen all the letters from a computer keyboard, and it's up to players to get them back. The kids hear 40 phonetic sounds; to defeat Vexor, they must correctly type the letters that correspond to what they hear, restoring as much of the missing alphabet to the keyboard as possible within the alloted time. Two animated hands describe proper keyboard fingering and guide children through exercises that reinforce phonics and word-composition skills.

"Children earn certificates for completing each of six activities per sound. As they progresss, kids go from typing single letters to letter combinations, and from simple words to complex words to simple sentences. Finally, players are asked to compose notes to imaginary pen pals and read mail sent to them by the characters they've met on the screen."

FamilyPC, September 1996

"Typing takes a backseat to reading and writing in this game-based program for kids as young as four. Computer keys represent sounds instead of letters (i.e., the program tells you to type the 'sound f' instead of the 'letter f'). The program systematically progresses from simple sounds to words and sentences. In the friendly, appealing interface, 26 Storytellers (one for each letter of the alphabet) live in houses shaped like a computer keyboard. As the Storytellers reveal their tales, a nasty green blob named Vexor the Virus steals them. Kids then rescue the letters from his slimy clutches through various typing, spelling, and sound-recognition games. The Bonus Blimp keeps track of performance on each activity and returns kids to replay activities they've had trouble with, while the Hall of Fame reports scores and produces fancy certificates for each successfully completed level."

CD-ROM Today, October 1995

"Now that elementary-school students are pounding out stories on a computer before they even learn to write in cursive, a luxurious early retirement awaits anyone who can interest kids in learning a skill that many adults consider a mild form of torture. The Learning Company comes close with Read, Write and Type. The secret of this program's success is its focus: It teaches typing while reinforcing other skills that 6- to 8-year-olds are developing at the same time.

"A lengthy opening segment introduces your tutors: Lefty LaDee and Right Way McKay, a pair of talking hands with east coast accents. Another set of characters (inclduing people, animals, and inanimate objects) live in apartments in a cartoon keyboard. The game element comes with the arrival of Vexor the Virus, a poetry-spouting, extraterrestrial green blob who steals all the keyboard's sounds (there are 40 different vowel sounds and consonant blends) and sends all the characters into hiding. It's up to you to get the sounds back."

"Read, Write and Type! is nothing if not thorough. Each of the ten levels features four sounds to be recovered, and each sound involves three stages. That means there's a long haul ahead even if you forgo the extra-credit activities in the Bonus Blip and the Power Fountain and don't waste your time sending 'pretend e-mail' from the E-Mail Tower.

"With its emphasis on finger position and its teamwork metaphor, only the most motivated typing students need enroll in Read, Write and Type! This program calls for real commitment,which a lot of 6- to 8-year-olds I know aren't prepared to give. But if you have a will to learn -and aren't scared off by the lips - this program can deliver the know-how."

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