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Clicker 5

  1. Published by Crick Software

  2. Foundation to KS 4 (All years)

  3. Cross-curricular

KS1 Content Evaluation by Linda Holland

Clicker 5 is a writing support and multimedia tool for children of all abilities, which can be used to support teaching and learning in any subject area. It has a talking word processor, called Clicker Writer. The student can write in this without using the keyboard, by simply clicking on words in the onscreen Clicker Grid. Individual words can be heard before they are chosen, and completed sentences can be read back to the writer. Some common words can have automatic picture support, and other images, videos and sounds can be imported from files or the Internet.

The program’s Clicker Grids have a variety of other uses, including the making of talking books, multimedia presentations and labelling activities.

Purpose of the Program
The program could be used by individuals or pairs on standalone computers, or by the whole class in the computer suite. It would also be effective for group or class teaching using the interactive whiteboard, when the children could come up to choose and write whole words with a single touch.

Teacher Controls
Clicker Writer settings for speech and highlighting, spellchecking, line spacing, font and text can be set by the teacher to apply whenever a particular Grid Set is opened. Changes can be made to the software speech voice used to speak text, and to the pitch and speed of that voice. Some or all of the tools on the toolbars can be hidden, and the window size adjusted. The teacher can also specify various preferences for individual children, which will change according to who’s logged in to the computer.

Curriculum Coverage
With Clicker 5 ‘it’s easy for pupils of all abilities to create simple documents and talking books, and more advanced students can create exciting applications using pictures, sound and video’. With appropriate preparation by the teacher, Key Stage 1 children can use the program for sentence building and labelling, using word banks and writing frames, and making simple talking books.

Clicker 5’s main area of use will be for writing, both in the Literacy Hour and across the curriculum. It could strongly support the following learning objectives from the Primary Framework for Literacy:
Yr 1 Creating and shaping texts
* Create short simple texts on paper and screen that combine words with images (and sounds).
* Find and use new and interesting words and phrases, including story language.
Yr 1 Text Structure and Organisation
* Write chronological and non-chronological texts using simple sentences.
* Group written sentences together in chunks of meaning or subject.
Yr 1 Sentence structure and punctuation
* Compose and write simple sentences independently to communicate meaning.
* Use capital letters and full stops when punctuating simple sentences.
Yr 2 Creating and shaping texts
* Select from different presentation features to suit particular writing purposes on paper and on screen.
* Make adventurous word and language choices appropriate to the style and purpose of the text.
Yr 2 Text Structure and Organisation
* Use planning to establish clear sections for writing.
* Use appropriate language to make sections hang together.
Yr 2 Sentence structure and punctuation
* Write simple and compound sentences and begin to use subordination in relation to time and reason.
* Use question marks, and use commas to separate items in a list.
Yr 2 Presentation
* Word process short narrative and non-narrative texts.

Clicker 5 is a tool that can be used in any curriculum area, and it includes useable examples of applications in Literacy, Geography, History, Science and Maths. Online resources within Clicker also cover a range of curriculum areas and can be accessed via the LearningGrids website.

The program could also be used in KS1 ICT lessons. Relevant Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) Units are:
* 1B: Using a word bank
* 1D: Labelling and classifying
* 2A: Writing stories

Analysis of Contents


  1. Content appropriate for target age group

  2. Activities pitched at the right level

  3. Suitable vocabulary

  4. Activities relevant and easy access

The activities are easy for KS1 children to access provided the teacher has prepared in advance the relevant grids, wordbanks etc. Alternatively, the children could work on examples within the program or downloaded from the LearningGrids website.

Ease of Use

  1. Clear installation instructions

  2. Classroom resources included

  3. Easy to navigate

  4. Supporting documentation

  5. Lesson plans and ideas for use in teh classroom

  6. Suitable for whiteboard use

  7. Suitable for lesson starters

  8. Suitable for whole class teaching

  9. Suitable for individual use.

The program would be fairly easy for KS1 children to navigate as long as the teacher had ensured that all the necessary elements were in place. A teacher who had not used earlier versions of Clicker would need to spend some time familiarising themself with all the many features of this program; the User Guide is long, but there are example files and free resources available on the LearningGrids website to help get you started straight away.


  1. Good quality images, video, sound

  2. Internet links

  3. Britsih English spellings

  4. Activities easy to access

  5. Activities saved for teacher to monitor results.

The 1800 images in the library are drawn rather than photographed. They are clear, and mostly reflect today's diverse society. The images show people of different ethnic origins, and include examples of both men and women in roles such as fire fighters, hairdressers and mechanics. The sound is good quality for computer generated speech, and a male or female voice can be accessed.


Ideas represent good practice

  1. Includes materials for lower achievers

  2. Includes materials for gifted and talented

  3. Supports inclusion

  4. Ideas represent good practice.

Clicker 5 supports the inclusion of lower achievers by providing a talking word processor, Clicker Writer, which enables writing without using the keyboard. The student can simply click on words or phrases in the onscreen grid, and even hear the words spoken before writing them. Some common words can have automatic picture support. The student could also type directly into Clicker Writer, and then just click on the more difficult words to select them from a prepared wordbank. Full-screen Clicker Grids could be used successfully by lower achievers for labelling activities, and to make simple talking books.

Many changes can be made to settings and preferences to help a child with SEN, and these changes can be saved to apply whenever that child logs in. For example, you can change the pitch and speed of the software speech voice, alter the size of the window or hide certain tools on the toolbar.

For students who are unable to use a mouse, the User Guide gives information about special access including the use of switches and scan groups.

Clicker 5 is an excellent writing support and multimedia tool for children of all abilities. Key Stage 1 children could use it for sentence building and labelling, using word banks and writing frames, and making simple talking books. It could support several of the KS 1/2 learning objectives from the Primary Framework for Literacy, and some Units of the QCA ICT Scheme of Work. Clicker 5 is suitable for individual use, or whole class teaching using an interactive whiteboard. It includes several readymade activities in a range of curriculum areas, and further online resources can be accessed from within the program. Clicker 5 supports the inclusion of children with SEN: its talking word processor enables them to write by simply clicking on words on the screen.