Teach Through Apps: Mystery Word Town

Teach Through Apps: Mystery Word Town

Age level: Early Elementary, Upper Elementary, Middle School

Description: Artgig Studio is one of those app companies that has earned my complete trust. I’ve written about Drive About before, and I use Mystery Math Museum and Marble Math all the time with my students. So I got pretty excited when I learned they were introducing a spelling app.

Mystery Word Town works much the same way that Mystery Math Museum works. The goal of the game is to work your way through the town and find all the missing gold, while also catching the outlaws who stole it. To enter different rooms in each building, the player must spell a word. It’s a simple concept, but the motivating story line allows for lots of spelling practice within the game.

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The player begins by searching the Sheriff’s office. Once they’ve found all the gold and one of the outlaws there, another building is unlocked.


Skills & Modifications: The game offers some built-in modifications, including three different levels of play and options for audio hints. I love this because it allows students with autism (or any student, really) I higher level of independence when playing the game.

Spelling – The game is specifically designed to practice spelling skills, and it does a beautiful job with this. Prior to playing the game, your learner should be able to easily recognize letters and spell C-V-C words.

Scanning – This is a great way for working on scanning skills, as students must simultaneously scan each room for letters and for pieces of missing gold.

The game requires scanning for multiple items. In this room, the player must scan to find the letter "o," the piece of missing gold next to the barrel, and entrances to other rooms in the building.

The game requires scanning for multiple items. In this room, the player must scan to find the letter “o,” the piece of missing gold next to the barrel, and entrances to other rooms in the building.

Orientation – Mystery Word Town also helps students practice the skill or orienting themselves within the building. It’s helpful for them to remember which rooms they’ve been and which floors of the building they’ve been through. If this is a skill you want to focus on, you may want to sit with your learner while they play to prompt them as necessary.

Independent Play – Many of my learners with autism are highly motivated by the iPad. I love that Mystery Word Town provides an opportunity for practicing functional skills while still allowing the learner to engage in a preferred activity. If your learner uses an activity schedule for managing leisure time, this may be a great option to add to the schedule.

To see how Mystery Word Town is played, take a look at this brief video:

Pros: This is a great app for use in the classroom because you can have unlimited accounts on one device, which means every student can log back in under their own name and pick up right where they left off!

Cons: I don’t really  have any cons, but I do have one wish: I would love if the game allowed you to input spelling words for the player. However, I greatly appreciate that there are three different levels of spelling words already programmed into the app.

mysterywt2Cost: $2.99 You should invest in this game if: you are a classroom teacher seeking appropriate educational activities for elementary learners, you have a student who is highly motivated by iPad activities and needs practice with spelling, or you are looking for independent leisure activities for your student.

ABLLS: A10, A19, T2
VB-MAPP: Independent Play 14

Mystery Word Town was provided to me for free by the company Artgig Studio to write about here. This did not influence my opinions on the toy. The thoughts and ideas above are all my own.

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