Big Kid Life Vet

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Big Kid Life Vet App Poster Image
Kids help animals by succeeding at simple learning games.

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn pre-reading skills including matching and phonics in this well-developed, parent-friendly app. Kids work on shapes, letters, phonics, and critical-thinking. The game is fun and educationally sound, but the parent communication is what sets Big Kid Life Vet apart. Parents receive emailed reports after kids play, giving a snapshot of the skills covered and offering recommendations for further play. Parents and kids can communicate with each other with voice messages, too. Kids will have fun pretending to be a vet while developing critical thinking and pre-reading skills, and parents will know what their kids are doing.

Ease of Play

Overall the app is easy to play, with lots of visual and verbal prompts. However, it's easy for kids to get stuck on the new games page and have a difficult time getting back to the vet game. Recording messages is a little more difficult at first if kids don't understand the very limited instruction. They must release the button, speak, and then press it again to send.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

The logo for Fingerprint is on the app's main intro screen, as well as on the screen that prompts kids to send a message to their parent. An "FP" icon on some screens will, when tapped, move kids to a Fingerprint page that tells them about new games from the developer. If kids tap on the new game, another screen pops up and a verbal prompt says, "Tap here if you want to tell your mom that you want this game." Then a message is sent to the parent.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Big Kid Life Vet is one of a series of apps by Fingerprint that lets kids try out different jobs while also practicing basic educational skills, such as logic and geometry, letter and shape identification, and phonics. Kids are assigned to certain "patients" including an octopus, dog, and panda. They must take care of them by performing X-rays and playing games. Fingerprint has (optional) free features that parents can use to communicate with their kids via the app and keep track of what their kids are playing. There is a fair amount of advertising for other Fingerprint apps on this app; nothing too overwhelming or out of the norm for a free app, though.

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What's it about?

Kids become vets who help sick animals by practicing preschool skills. Parents help with the initial setup and can use the app for three different children. Kids choose their avatar, level of difficulty, and which of three patients to help first. They calm the animal using a described motion on the touch screen. Then kids X-ray the animal patient by dragging the scanner over the animal. The X-ray opens the challenge, which instructs kids to identify the specified object or shapes, or letters or letter sounds, depending on the level.

Is it any good?

Kids love pretending what it will be like to have certain jobs when they grow up, and veterinary medicine is a popular "what I want to be" choice. BIG KID LIFE VET allows very young kids to play vet on an app, while also giving them some practice in basic educational skills through simple games built into the app. What's great about this app is that when a kid performs well on a game (finding shapes and objects, for example), the animal they are taking care of is given treats or somehow otherwise feels better, so kids get a sense of connection between learning and positive results beyond the typical games for kids where they earn points to "buy" pretend stuff. As a result, learning means helping, not just increased ability to buy stuff. This app is one of a series of similarly crafted apps by Fingerprint, a developer that has come up with ways for parents to manage a child's apps, see what they're playing and learning, and send and receive personal messages back and forth with their kid through the app (optional).

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Steer kids who enjoy imaginative play, especially those interested in playing doctor or vet, to this app.

  • Take advantage of the app's innovative communication tools by sending encouraging voice messages to your kids and tracking their progress.

  • Mimic the app's premise and incorporate preschool skills into imaginative play.

App details

Themes & Topics

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For kids who love animals

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