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Crayola Create and Play

App review by
Christy Matte, Common Sense Media
Crayola Create and Play App Poster Image
Delightful creativity and game combo for subscription.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can express themselves creatively, practice sorting and grouping, learn to draw letters, and begin to understand the responsibility of pet care. 

Ease of Play

Kids will have little to no trouble navigating, understanding activities. A few games have controls that may be challenging for very young kids. 

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Crayola Create and Play is a creative and educational subscription-based experience for young kids. Even little kids can enjoy the games and activities, as there's no required reading, although they may need help getting started. The games do ramp up in difficulty, so little ones could get frustrated. Although the app's technically free, there's no free content to sample. A subscription is required for all of the activities, but parents can test things out with a one-week trial. Subscription fees range from $5.99/month to $39.99/year. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your (or your kids') information is collected, used, and shared and any choices you may have in the matter, and note that privacy policies and terms of service frequently change.

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What's it about?

CRAYOLA CREATE AND PLAY combines creativity with learning activities and games geared toward kids ages 3 to 8. There are five zones of activities. Art Station has a free-draw area with plenty of fun special effects, a coloring book area that helps kids stay between the lines, and a spot for kids to take selfies with silly costumes that they can further decorate in the coloring book area. Color Lab is all about mixing and sorting colors. Kids can design their own colors and make a wax shape using a mold, learn how crayons are made, sort crayons by color, help some Crayola robots, and sort paint balls. Learning Games focuses on learning more about shapes and basic spatial reasoning, coding logic, and writing (tracing) letters. Arcade has three games: Pet Dash, a kid-friendly platform game; Puzzle Painter, where kids assemble jigsaw puzzles; and Scoop Stack, where kids collect falling scoops of ice cream. The last zone is Pets. Kids earn eggs as they complete other activities and games. In Pets, they color their eggs and help them hatch into cute pets who look a lot like their egg designs. Kids can assign pets to live on the beach, in the jungle, or in a winter wonderland. They also will need to feed their pets, buy them fun accessories, bathe them, and play with them. 

Is it any good?

Full of color and imagination, these games and activities will engage a wide variety of kids, and maybe even some adults. Crayola Create and Play is delightful to look at. It seems like the sort of place you'd like to visit in person. Some of the games are better than others, but the coloring areas and Pets zone are where this experience shines. Kids will enjoy the dual experience of free color and the coloring book. Free color really lets their imaginations free with some neat special-effects crayons that draw grass, flames, and snowflakes, as well as stickers and stamps. In the coloring book, they have the same tools, but the coloring stays between the lines as long as your finger stays on the screen. This allows all the kids to see their vision come to life, even if they haven't quite mastered the fine motor skills, though some parents may not love the automatic perfection of this type of coloring. The pets themselves are adorable, and kids will be thrilled that their egg design is reflected on the new pet. The only drawback to Crayola Create and Play is the subscription. Although there's a lot of great content, it's a hard sell at $5.99/month. Crayola will be adding new content, but it will be more of the same: more coloring pages, videos, pet accessories, etc. Subscription aside, kids will enjoy it, and those who like creative activities will get a lot of value. This one's a gem if you can justify the cost. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about having a pet as they play Crayola Create and Play. What types of things do you need to do to take care of a pet? If you have a pet at home, how do you help with pet care?

  • Talk to your kids about screen use and limits. How can kids enjoy digital media in balance with other activities?

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