GazziliScience

App review by
Mieke VanderBorght, Common Sense Media
GazziliScience App Poster Image
Wordy but fun journeys guide kids through six topics.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn about six scientific wonders: the water cycle, the five senses, the concepts of sink and float, plants, living and not-living things, and the four seasons. The narrator provides a basic explanation to introduce kids to each concept and gives them just enough information to feel as though they understand something new about how the world works. More opportunities to learn through doing instead of listening would be an even better use of the touchscreen, and consistently age-appropriate vocabulary would help the youngest users understand more of the narration. With a gentle, encouraging tone, GazziliScience shows kids that science is not only fun and accessible but also all around us.

Ease of Play

Lots of directions guide kids through play.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

Icons of other apps from the same developer appear on the home screen as ads; a child gate protects purchase.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that GazziliScience is one is a suite of apps, and it teaches kids about six science concepts through interactive, guided "tours." For example, a narrator explains what happens when a seed is planted in the ground, and there are multiple pauses to give kids opportunities to interact with and watch the seed grow into a plant. There's quite a bit of explaining, and some of the vocabulary may be unfamiliar to preschoolers, so it's a good opportunity to use the app with your kids and help explain further. Though the first chapter is free, you have to pay for access to five more chapters covering other science concepts. Once purchased, parents can download the whole game in ten languages: English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, Chinese, or Spanish. There's also a hearing-impaired option which provides text for all the narration even though kids young enough to use this app are unlikely to be reading yet.

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What's it about?

In each of six interactive science journeys in GAZZILISCIENCE, kids hear narration that explains the concept, and they complete tasks that help make the explanation come alive. For example, kids hear about the earth's orbit around the sun and then tap to move the rotating earth. At each of four stops, the narrator describes the season, kids tap a tree to see what changes for that season, and you can tap a character to give him weather-appropriate clothing. With each completed journey, kids move a new piece into a complicated pet-feeding contraption until all six pieces are in place and kids can watch it in action.

Is it any good?

Though the app is sometimes wordy and a bit complicated, the explanations and interactive elements break complex science topics down into kid-friendly activities. In one particularly clever game, kids experiment with sink vs. float by giving a little monster objects that help him move up and down through pipes of a sunken ship. It's also neat that this app is fully available in 10 languages, which makes it great for multilingual or ELL families. Small details get in the way of making this app truly spectacular, though; for example, the activities have a lot of narration, which will have some kids itching for more doing and less listening. Also, though much of the demonstrations are at preschool level, sometimes explanations seem a bit long and involved for the target age. It also would be nice to see an overarching theme that ties together the six topics, which seem disjointed. Despite these shortcomings, these activities turn science into fun, interactive, mini-adventures.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the science themes. Listen to kids' questions and give them any missing background information or details.

  • Explore and experiment off the screen. Plant a seed and watch it grow, discover which objects sink or float, or take a sensory tour using all five senses.

  • Use science, engineering, critical thinking, problem solving, and trial and error to build your own silly contraption like the one that Purple builds. Gather household items and get creative!

App details

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