Hatch - Stay Focused
By Christy Matte,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Cute creature-hatching focus timer lacks fun incentives.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
When used as part of an overall strategy to help kids work on time management and focus, Hatch - Stay Focused can help kids break work down into manageable chunks, as well as break the habit of constantly checking their phone or tablet.
Ease of Play
Navigation between tabs doesn't always behave as expected, but the overall interface is easy to use.
Violence & Scariness
If kids exit before the timer has run down, their creature will die.
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Hatch - Stay Focused
Based on 1 parent review
This app was a real fun app worthy of 5 stars. Since it was recently upgraded to version 1.08 its become worthless. No longer can one see the results of one's actions. It's become harder to chose what time period one wants. One has to Quit and then restart it in order to get any functionality at all.
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What’s It About?
HATCH - STAY FOCUSED is a timer meant to encourage kids to take screen breaks and focus on other things. Kids set their timers in five-minute increments, which starts the process of hatching an egg with a mystery creature inside. Once it's started, kids can't close the app or run another app. If they do, their egg will explode and they'll lose the creature inside. At the end of the timer, the egg cracks and the mystery creature is revealed. Each creature has an information card about its origin, its personality, etc., as well as how many focus energy points it's worth. These focus energy points help kids level up through various status levels. The levels don't seem to do anything; there are no special features or rewards when you level up. Kids also have a screen that has their stats, including their level, number of focus energy points, and the amount of time spent focusing. There's a button on this screen to share the stats on Instagram.
Is It Any Good?
This timer has some fun features and may help your kid avoid distraction, but it could use even more incentives. Focus timers are growing in popularity, and kids who enjoy games like Pokémon GO may be motivated by the idea of hatching mystery creatures as they abstain from screen time. Hatch - Stay Focused works as intended in that regard. The creatures are kind of cute, and at first it's fun to see what appears in your eggs. But soon it's clear that there's no way to interact with your growing zoo and there's nothing to do with your amassed focus energy. Teens will be looking for ways to use their points or interact with their collection of creatures in some additional way. That said, it's a solid start that builds a bridge between kids who love to collect creatures and their efforts to stay focused, and since it's free, it's definitely worth a try!
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about healthy technology use and how apps like Hatch - Stay Focused can help. How often should you take breaks? What are the family rules about device use during homework time?
Talk about media balance. How do you like this app in comparison with other apps you could use? As you balance your time with devices and without, would this be an app you'd choose to use? Do you think it will help you stay focused? Why, or why not?
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
- Skills: Self-Direction: achieving goals, goal-setting, motivation, personal growth, time management, working efficiently
- Pricing structure: Free
- Release date: May 15, 2018
- Category: Productivity
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- Publisher: Christopher Stamper
- Version: 1.0.3
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 11.1 or later
- Last updated: May 21, 2018
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