My daughter and I went to an event in Kensington last night for the launch of Mindshapes new kids app, Hickory Dickory Dock (available from iTunes for £1.99). It introduces children to the concept of telling time, accompanied by the familiar nursery rhyme and a mischievous mouse. There are 12 mini games within the app, one for each hour on the clock.
At first, as an ex-teacher, I was a bit concerned that the mini-games distracted my daughter from the skill of telling time, as I didn’t think they were directly linked to the time on the clock and felt a bit random. But, after reading a bit more about the philosophy of the company ‘that learning should be fun’ I came to the conclusion that this was probably intentional.
My daughter is only four and is not really ready for telling time but this gentle, almost subliminal introduction to the clock is just right. Without her even noticing she’s being introduced to both literacy and numeracy.
My daughter’s favourite game is 12 o’clock where you squirt the mouse with soap, shower him of and then blast him with the hairdryer and he turns into a big fluff ball. She howled with laughter.
The animations are amazing. However, I think they were a bit lost on my little iPhone. I can’t help thinking that this app would really come into it’s own on an Ipad.
We also had an opportunity to explore a few of their other apps. I was truly impressed with their interactive version of the Classic Tale – Jack and the Beanstalk. If I don’t manage to blag a copy I’ll definitely be buying that one.
So overall here is what (I) we thought:
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