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Professional, Originally Released On Cassette Only


Game Type          : Educational, Ages 4-6

Author             : None given

Standalone Release(s)  : 1984: EARLY READING, Cheshire Cat, £9.95

Compilation Release(s) : None

Stated compatibility    : Electron

Actual compatibility    : Electron, BBC B, B+ and Master 128

Supplier            : AMPALSOFT, PO Box 19, Knutsford, CHESHIRE WA16 0HE

Disc compatibility     : CDFS E00, DFS E00




"A fun packed series of brilliant games, cleverly designed to enthrall young children while teaching them to read. These programs make full use of all the home computer facilities to produce wonderful coloured graphics accompanied by a rich variety of sounds.


Words used in the exciting games are presented in the bold way already familiar and popular in modern reading books. All graphics are clear and carefully designed to intrigue any youngster.


Specially designed exercises build your child's sight vocabulary in four important groups - transport, clothes and two sets of everyday domestic items.


All objects illustrated are very familiar to children and frequently occur in other reading schemes. Plurals are introduced at the end of each section.


Cheshire Cat EARLY READING includes: Sight vocabulary games, Reading aids, Full colour sound and graphics, Familiar objects - transport, clothes, etc.


Children will learn to play the thrilling games very quickly - only the keyboard arrow keys are needed with the spacebar and RETURN keys.


Parents will need only a minimum supervision to begin and then children will happily play on unaided. Exercises can be played through quickly and the child does not need to master the words in the early sections to be able to move on.


Learning will be a natural process as the child repeats the entertaining games and exercises. Correct answer responses are rewarded by ticks and attractive sounds. Wrong answers are ignored as the computer awaits another response - no fear of failure is introduced.


Cheshire Cat is child's play after all!"


EARLY READING has been very carefully designed by experienced first school teachers to produce a genuine educational program that at the same time will enthrall young children.


Their practical teaching skills in the modern methods of EARLY READING tuition have been combined with the versatility of the home computer to produce this fun package featuring familiar words and objects.


All the computer's colour, sound and animation facilities have been skilfully harnessed to bring the "pages" alive to captivate and intrigue the young user.


The two tapes contain four packed sides of programs which neatly divide into four main sections:


* Transport - planes, boats, trains, cars, bikes and many more

* In My House - television, radio, cooker, chair, cupboard

* Clothes - anorak, hat, trousers, shirt, shoes

* Building A House - build your own home with roof, windows, door


Each of the first three topics, Transport, In My House and Clothes, are tackled in four exciting parts that rule out boredom and encourage learning by play:


* Learn Word - select a word and watch the object being drawn

* Word Game - now put the right object to the name required

* Big and Little - cars, chairs, hats, appear big or little and after a fun hello to the concept the child starts playing the Little/Big game

* Lots Of - the screen fills with lots of one object


The final topic, Building A House, is a wonderful adventure where the child builds a home using words and pictures - learning the words roof, walls, window, door, etc without even noticing!


All sections of the fascinating EARLY READING program are totally flexible and easy for a child to use unaided.


The child can move forward and back through the games at will, skipping any item or repeating those it finds more attractive or interesting.


The whole object of EARLY READING is to teach through play, learning is a natural process through the sheer joy of running the program.


Supervision needs are minimal. After loading, a short guide to operating the program through the direction arrow keys, space bar, RETURN and ESCAPE keys, is all that is required.


A young child does not take long to learn to play unaided.



Choose a word from the list by using an asterisk * that moves up and down by operating the arrow keys. Press SPACE when the correct word has been selected.


After a word is chosen, the object is drawn on the screen with the word neatly written below. After the word has been written, press SPACE to return to the word list. This is a Learn Word.


In Word Games, the child tries to select the picture that matches the word at the bottom of the screen, moving the asterisk with all four arrow keys. Press SPACE when the correct choice has been made. Right answer and a tick appears in the panel and a new object is drawn in that place. On completing Word Games, press RETURN and the program will go back to the main menu.


When Big/Little is played, a word is chosen from a list and that object, say a bicycle, is drawn - first Big then Little. After Little, press SPACE to return to the word list, or press RETURN to play the Big/Little game. Big and Little and what they mean is soon learnt. After completing the Big/Little game, press RETURN and the program will go back to the main menu.


In My House

Familiar objects about the house, like mummy's cooker, the cupboard, table, chair and television feature in this section, starting with Learn Word.


Again, Word Game is a fun-filled test of the words learnt already. As with other topics in EARLY READING, Word Game or any game can be played in any order.


The Big/Little game follows examples of big and little household objects drawn on screen. Now the child has a chance to test its recognition of the words big and little.


Lots Of means just what it says. An object on the word list is automatically chosen by the program, and lots of them are drawn all over the screen. Press SPACE to see lots of another object from the word list.



Everyday items of clothing make up this third very important section of EARLY READING.


As in the Transport and In My House topics, Clothes features four games: Learn Word, Word Game, Big/Little and Lots Of.


Building A House

This is an exciting adventure that uses a different method of teaching words. A list of words relating to parts of a house appears. Move the asterisk, using the arrow keys, to select a part. Press SPACE when a part is selected and it is then drawn on the screen. The list appears in a different order each time it is played.


After a few house building exercises, the RETURN key reverses the game. The RETURN key will only be effective when a complete house has been built. Now parts of the house flash on screen and the correct word has to be selected from the list. Right answers only enable the house to be completed. Press SPACE to repeat the game or RETURN to go back to the first house building game.



Instructions' Source   : MATHS 'O' LEVEL REVISION PART ONE (Cheshire Cat) Booklet


Review (Electron User)

This rather smart video-type case includes a useful teacher's or parent's booklet and two cassettes containing a total of four related programs. These are designed to help early readers with their vocabulary. The four topics have been well selected, and include transport and clothes, as well as sections on In My House and Building A House, all of which can lead to much useful activity at home or school to complement these attractively designed programs.

Each of the four sides loads identically, with two small loaders leading to the main file. There is then in each case an identical  choice of activities to select from.

Learn Word does precisely that, and offers a menu of words which are involved in a particular topic. The arrow keys move an asterisk until it is opposite the required word, when pressing Space will show a simple but effective drawing of the object with the word written below. This may not be the most stimulating part of the tape, but the initial messages have to be well received first.

More to most children's tastes will be Word Games, in which a series of six well-drawn pictures is drawn on screen in a grid. A word appears below, and the cursor keys again control the movement until the child selects Space to indicate a choice. A correct answer brings a tick, another figure is added to replace the one just guessed, and on goes the child looking for six correct answers. Actually, wrong answers are impossible for the program will only react to a correct input. This is fairly sound in the early stages, as it gives the child greater confidence to try. I was a little concerned at first to see the cursor keys used, but even the five-year-olds I tried this on showed on problems whatsoever.

Big/Little shows a big object, and the same object much smaller, and the child is then asked to say which shapes are big and which are little. The last choice, slightly odd, shows lots of the same object all over the screen. It left me wondering why it was included. However, this minor criticism aside, it is a very useful and attractive program for young readers.

Phil Tayler, ELECTRON USER 2. 1