Cambugs: Letter Sounds 4+


Designed for iPad

    • 4.6 • 40 Ratings
    • Free
    • Offers In-App Purchases


Cambugs: Letter Sounds teaches children the initial phonemes (letter sounds) which are the first step on their journey to become fluent, confident readers.

Cambugs has been developed by educational psychologists and parents, working in partnership with the University of Cambridge. We know the importance of parents taking an active role in their children’s learning, so we developed an app where parents/teachers and children work together.

Cambugs: Letter Sounds is targeted at pre-readers, as well as struggling older readers. It uses evidence-based techniques that research has shown helps children develop their reading skills. You will notice in this app that children engage in lots of repetition — this is because this is a very effective strategy for ensuring that children remember and retain the sounds that they learn. There is also a test for ensuring that your child is able to remember their letter sounds quickly and fluently — this is because fluency is a key skill needed for becoming a confident reader.

◆ Developed by educational psychologists using teaching techniques that we know work.

◆ Teaches your child their letter sounds to a level where they can demonstrate confidence and fluency — key skills needed for later word reading and comprehension of text.

◆ Uniquely designed as a joint activity so that you are guiding your child through their learning. Think of it as being a bit like sitting down and reading a story with your child.

◆ When children learn a new sound they are rewarded with a ‘Cambug’. These bugs have been designed by children for children.

◆ Statistics screen shows you how many letter sounds your child knows and which sounds they need to learn. This is very useful if being used in a school setting.

Cambugs: Letter Sounds includes four activities :

‣ Sorting: Sort letter sounds into two piles (sounds your child knows and sounds that have yet to be learned ). This initial activity ensures the app is personalised to meet the specific learning needs of your child.

‣ Learning: Children learn a new letter sound alongside letter sounds that they know already. This is called ‘incremental learning’ and ensures your child remembers their sounds.

‣ Fluency Test: Children are timed to see how quickly they can say each sound. The app automatically puts letters that your child has not yet learned fluently back in the unknown pile to be re-learned at a later date. If your child likes the competitive element of the test, switch on the Time Challenge.

‣ Bug Collection: Your child will find a new bug in their collection whenever they learn a new sound and they can visit this at any time!

This free version is limited to two users. Unlimited users are available with an in-app purchase, or by purchasing Cambugs: Letter Sounds Schools — also available on the App Store.

What’s New

Version 2.1

Support for iOS 12 and the new iPhones.

Removes the 1 from the app name on device to make it easier to find the app that was just downloaded.

Ratings and Reviews

4.6 out of 5
40 Ratings

40 Ratings

Rainandgray ,


Well I just wrote a very thoughtful review and it was all erased. To be brief - I think this is an excellent teaching tool. Only thing I would change is that I would like to control which order the sounds are introduced to match up with the sequence that I am teaching them.

Dessagod ,

Great for First letter sounds

My 3yo uses this app, with my supervision and help. It has really helped him learn letter sounds, which is exactly what I was looking for. He really likes earning bugs, and playing with them. There are a few things that I really dislike about the app. Some of the sounds that the "instructor" gives are wrong. We haven't made it very far (10 letters in), but for sure, the "r" is wrong. If I wasn't constantly watching him play, and coaching him through it, this could really mess with his reading skills. Another thing I don't like, is the amount of time they give for the test. He knows these letters, but he likes to take a quick breath before saying the sound, and it's not fast enough to qualify as "knowing" the sound. When he misses those letters in the test, he has to start all over to learn them. I think it would be better to give them more time, and let them move on and teach him some more letters.

BekkaOT ,


Can you make this app accessible to non-speaking individuals who are learning to read? It would be great if there was an option in the settings that added two to four buttons at the bottom that offered auditory choices of letter sounds that a non-speaking child could use to make a choice.

App Privacy

The developer, Cambugs, has not provided details about its privacy practices and handling of data to Apple. For more information, see the developer’s privacy policy.

No Details Provided

The developer will be required to provide privacy details when they submit their next app update.

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