(KPIX 5) — A lifelong educational advocate and past Jefferson Award winner saw a need to help parents supplement their kids’ online learning during the coronavirus pandemic with her specially designed teaching software.

Dr. Jeannine Herron, founder and director of Talking Fingers, is giving away her software “Read, Write and Type” for free. Parents can log onto Herron’s Talking Fingers website to access the program, which lets children link speech sounds to letters, using their fingers to talk as they sound out and type out hundreds of words, phrases and sentences.

“We made it free for the next six months for people to get a six months’ subscription and use it at home,” Herron said.

Children love the colorful characters in the video game-like program, which even includes a virus they must “outsmart” by learning. Herron wanted to make it free because she was shocked to see how many families and students have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In recent days, Herron says several hundred users have accessed the free program, which is also available in nine different languages. She says she’ll continue to offer it for free even after the health crisis is over.

At this moment, it’s a time when they can see that they can outfox or outsmart this virus and maybe it will show them that there is an optimistic approach to all this,” Herron said.

Read, Write and Type can be downloaded at the following link: Read, Write & Type Online Edition.

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