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PostPosted: Fri May 25, 2012 9:36 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2012 5:31 pm
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Children read but often are reluctant to look up new words and may not bother asking parents. Or parents are tired of being a dictionary. Or parents simply do not know.

I have been thinking of getting an iPad for my son because it seems to be the only technology allowing tapping a word while reading. It has both dictionary and thesausrus at one tap. Kindle has limitations and in most kindles you have to use cursor instead of tapping - too much work. But even with iPad we would be restricted to ebooks. I do not know if this in-line dictionary also works on other documents or websites. I have not tested it, but to my knowledge it does not have integrated audio pronunciation and even if it does it most likely not British. Still, probably the best for electronic text.

But it would be good to have something to help with real books or any other situations where a dictionary could come handy. The ideal solution would be to have something small, like an iPhone, with speech recognition, possibly like Siri? I am not an iPhone user, so perhaps someone will advise. It should be possible to say a word and see choices on the screen (and simply type a word as not everything would be recognised). Then when tapping on word there would be explanation of meaning with sentence example, pronunciation audio and thesaurus.

Any ideas?


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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 12:53 pm 
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It might be worth trying http://www.thefreedictionary.com . There is an app for android phones so I suspect an iphone/ipad version is available. It has UK pronunciation and you can use google voice to locate words.
A thesaurus is a tap away.


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PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 3:13 pm 
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Thanks Maxhead, I use freedictionary from time to time by I have never used Google Voice, so definitely worth exploring. The drawback would be necessity to stay connencted and I would rather have it offline.
It appears that the new iPad has voice recognition although not as good as Siri (which itself is beta), so I am no sure if it would work with dictionaries. As for dictionaries, I identified two: Oxford or Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary with offers both UK and US pronunciation audio and usage in sentences (with audio from Oxford). Not cheap at £20, but might be the best offline dictionary with audio around. If only that would work with voice input. Maybe with next iPad?


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:32 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 12:06 pm
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Location: Birmingham
You can buy extremely slim and lightweight electronic dictionary bookmarks from Waterstones or Amazon.
These are excellent as they can be slipped into the book as a bookmark, and the meaning of words becomes immediately accessible. Each has a touchscreen to type in words with a panel in which the meaning appears.
They are not cheap for a bookmark at about £20 but are very useful for budding readers.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 6:50 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 2:50 pm
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I have recently bought the new Seiko 6700 for both my kids to replace a Franklin one (I actually ordered the Seiko 6100 from Argos and this newer and I think better model arrived!). It has a dictionary; thesaurus and encyclopaedia included and according to my son is very good and better than the Franklin one he had been using until it went through the washing machine, (he is year 5). I think the Franklin one is a bit easier to use and has slightly simpler definitions but a far more limited vocab and no encyclopaedia which has proved to be very useful for looking details up when reading when just a dictionary definition is not enough.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2015 1:15 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
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um wrote:
You can buy extremely slim and lightweight electronic dictionary bookmarks from Waterstones or Amazon.
These are excellent as they can be slipped into the book as a bookmark, and the meaning of words becomes immediately accessible. Each has a touchscreen to type in words with a panel in which the meaning appears.
They are not cheap for a bookmark at about £20 but are very useful for budding readers.


Um, does your school allow your child to use one of these at school or are the banned under some policy or other?


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 12:04 am 
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Joined: Sat May 30, 2009 12:06 pm
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Location: Birmingham
This is an ancient thread so I will have to cast my mind back a bit :D

I don't think they were banned, no.

However if children have access to a smartphone/tablet/computer at home (and I think most do :wink: ) the easiest way by far to look up a word is just type define:the word (for example define vicarious) straight into google and usually a clear and easy to understand definition pops straight up.

Sorry but I don't understand parents who are still making dc search through big dictionaries to look up words. You don't need to do this. Welcome to the year 2015. :D


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 17, 2015 9:23 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
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:lol: agreed.

My children's school has banned dedicated e-readers and electronic dictionaries too in the name of e-safety - in fact the way they interpret their own e-safety policy, calculators would be banned too.


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