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New, innovative App to assess children's literacy levels

Peniarth has developed a new innovative app for the education sector in Wales that aims to support teachers in developing pupils' literacy skills, and to ensure that they succeed in the Language, Literacy and Communication Area of Learning within the new Curriculum for Wales 2022.

The Aur am Air app, which assesses the literacy levels of pupils of all ages, primary and secondary, introduces pupils to a variety of games and activities that are carefully designed, specifically to develop their spelling skills in Welsh. The app contains a diagnostic test which is presented to pupils as they open up the app for the first time. Depending on the results of the test, the App tailors the activities and games to ensure that their content is appropriate to the level of ability and skills of the pupil.

Following receiving funding from the Welsh Government to develop the App, Peniarth worked with teachers and language specialists across Wales, additional learning needs specialists in particular, to ensure that the app could also be used to support learners who would sometimes struggle to recognise and learn letter and word sounds in Welsh.

Nanna Ryder, a Cross Curricular Additional Learning Needs Senior Lecturer with the Athrofa at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, worked closely with Peniarth as part of the authoring team for the App. Nanna said, “After months of planning for the App, I am delighted to see it now available to teachers and pupils. It includes a range of engaging games and activities for pupils of all ages, and ability, and can be used to support work already done in the classroom and also to promote independent learning”.

The App was launched at a special event in Ysgol Bro Teifi - the first purpose-built Welsh Medium all-through School (3 - 18 years) to be built in Wales. Ysgol Bro Teifi worked closely with Peniarth to trial the App with pupils of all ages during the development process.

Gwydion Wynne said, “This App is one of the first of its kind available in Welsh, in terms of providing an opportunity for pupils of all ages to develop their literacy skills through games and activities that have been specifically tailored to their level of ability. We are delighted to have received support from the Welsh in Education Resources Branch, within the Welsh Government to develop the App and to have worked with experts across Wales”.

Peniarth developed the Aur am Air App for the education sector in Wales - it is available free of charge for Android and iOS mobile phones and tablets.