Both of my boys have iPads. We are an Apple household, what can I say. And I do believe iPads have a lot of value, past entertainment. They can also download ebooks, I am not going to say no to a good book! And of course there are many educational apps out there.
I wanted my oldest (2nd grade) to work on his math skills and my youngest to work on his phonics, so I agreed to try out two educational apps from Evanced Games. These are my thoughts:
Champs of Numeria: I highly suggest this app. Once you download it, take the time to watch the tutorial. I skipped it at first and was immediately lost. But once I took the time to watch the tutorial, it was fun, competitive and customizable for my son’s math level.
It is a Connect Four-style game. You have to choose and solve math problems and then find the answer on a large number grid. The first person to get four in a row vertically, horizontally or diagonally wins. Each player gets to customize the questions they answer – so one person ay be doing easy addition while another will be answering difficult multiplication. There are ALWAYS FOUR PLAYERS. But the players can be done by the computer or another human. So the whole family can play OR one person can play versus three computer brains.
When you open the app (and after you watch that tutorial) you choose PLAY GAME. You will see all four players. First, choose your player by tapping their picture. (I like playing as Digby the Dragon.)
Choose that you want this first character to be human. Then choose whether you want to be adding dice, doing addition/subtraction, multiplication, or a mix of problems. You will also set the level to be easy, medium or hard. You can also push arrows next to the character on this screen and choose a new avatar – like Rocket Porp, Sheriff 7 or Mush … just to name a few options. When you are done personalizing your character, press the check mark. You will be sent back to the four character screen.
Now that you set your character, you have to set up the other 3. If you want to play against another human, choose HUMAN. And you can also set up what type of questions they will answer and the difficulty level. If you have no other humans to play against, make sure they are all set to Computer.
When you choose to set a character to Computer mode, there is a gear next to it. Now you can customize their personality. Are they passive, aggressive, careless, strategizing, or a master. There is an explanation of each character when you push the different face icons. I like to play with a mix of character personalities.
Once all characters are customized, you choose the big READY button on the bottom. The characters that are playing are on the left hand side. When it’s their turn (or your turn) the picture will get bigger. On the bottom of the screen are three math problems. Choose the one you want to solve for the best placement on the board. When you know your answer, you push the number on the grid and keep your finger on it until it makes a pop sound.
First person to get four in a row wins! It is building math skills and strategy. I really like that one person can play alone versus the computer or that multiple people can play. I also like how everyone can customize it for their math level, so that my youngest and oldest can both play. I give it 5 out of 5 stars.
To download Champs of Numeria ($0.99), please visit http://evancedkids.com/games/
Froggy Phonics: I chose this app for my youngest son to build his phonics awareness. As you play, Froggy unlocks various outdoor environments. You are given a beginning or ending sound or blend. Froggy has to jump around and find a word on a lilpad that matches the sound rule. It combines learning about letters and their sounds, plus engages the memory as kids will make their way through the maze to find that word they passed before that follows a new rule.
I will say that I give this app 4 out of 5 stars. It is probably best for children in the 4 – 5 age range. It didn’t quite keep my six year old engaged once he learned how to play. It is going to be a sometimes game for him. This app is available for $4.99.
Of the two Evanced Games apps we tried, I really LOVED Champs of Numeria – available on iPhone and Android devices. So we will be giving one reader a chance to win a code for the app. To enter to win, please follow the Rafflecopter Instructions below. This contest begins 2/18/14 and ends 2/24/14.