A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Kids can learn 100 words and phrases, with a focus on sound and pronunciation. Since a word or phrase is spoken as they tap on a picture, kids can make the connection between the picture and the pronunciation of the word or phrase. This is an excellent strategy for language development. Ten languages are available: English (U.S.), English (U.K.), Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, simplified Chinese, and Japanese. Vocabulary words and phrases include the following categories: clothing, weather, numbers, animals, colors, food, and vehicles. Through exploration and open-ended play, kids playing Eli Explorer can learn a variety of words in many languages and enjoy using cause and effect.
Ease of Play
Young learners should find most of the visual cues for navigating helpful. Audio directions could help.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Eli Explorer is an open-play exploration tool that teaches kids how to pronounce important words and phrases. Kids can hear words spoken in a variety of languages, such as Spanish, Chinese, and Russian. Kids swipe the screen or tap to move Eli, the friendly rabbit "tour guide," to move from place to place and hear words and phrases. Kids are empowered to explore and can go back and forth to different places as they wish, with some limited variation in results. There's mild potty humor when Eli drinks water and burps or dives in to a bush to relieve herself and some angry lizards emerge, throwing what appears to be Eli's poo.
Is It Any Good?
Filled with irresistible graphics and fun surprises, Eli Explorer encourages toddlers to play and learn. The words and phrases are age-appropriate, and the open-play platform is ideal for young learners. Moving Eli around isn't entirely intuitive at first, as tapping or dragging directs her. There's quite a bit to explore, and some of the cause-and-effect relationships offer variety, such as the kitchen where an adult rabbit offers Eli different foods. Ultimately, the exploration is finite, though kids likely will revisit their favorite parts of the world many times. Some parents may not like the mild potty humor and the somewhat confusing form it takes: Eli squints, and tears form around her eyes before she dives into a bush. After she emerges, angry lizards pop out, throw her poo, and laugh. Most kids will find it hilarious, but some might wonder what's happening. Ultimately, there are many fun elements to explore, and the ability to choose from many languages is a huge plus.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.