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Human Heroes Einstein's Clock

App review by
Mieke VanderBorght, Common Sense Media
Human Heroes Einstein's Clock App Poster Image
Clear explanations help kids try their hand at telling time.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn how to read an analog clock. They'll practice setting a clock to show a particular time and learn about the hour hand and minute hand. Concepts like "half past," "quarter past," "quarter to" are also a small introduction to fractions.

Ease of Play

Navigation is easy, but manipulating the hands on the clock requires precise movements.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

After several levels, a screen appears advertising the full version of the app; kids must tap on the X to close it and continue playing. There's no parent gate blocking access to the app store.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Human Heroes Einstein's Clock teaches kids how to read an analog clock through explanation and hands-on practice. Each level introduces a progressively more complex topic on how to read a clock. After a short verbal explanation, kids get lots of practice arranging the hands on the clock to reflect a target time. It can be tricky to move and place the clock hands where you want them, particularly if you're working on a small screen. Kids may need practice to figure out exactly how to tap and drag the hands so that they respond in the desired way. Human Heroes Einstein's Clock is a stand-alone free app, but is also a small part of a larger app available for purchase. Print ads for the full paid version appear between levels several times during play. Upon tapping the ad, there's no parent gate to pass through before arriving at the app store, and kids must tap the X in the corner to close the ad and continue playing. 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?

On the HUMAN HEROES EINSTEIN'S CLOCK home screen, tap the play button to start leveled games, or turn the hands around the clock for free play exploration. Level one starts with explaining the hour hand and the "o'clock" position. After a short audio and visual demonstration, kids practice moving the clock hand around to display a target time, with increasingly fewer clues to help them. If kids struggle, clues get added back in. Levels continue through half past, quarter past, quarter to, and minutes, and kids accumulate points for completing levels. In free play, kids can move the hands around the clock, see the time represented in a digital clock, watch the background change from day to night accordingly, and, at some points on the clock, hear jokes or interesting time-related facts.

Is it any good?

Clear, patient explanations pair with supporting visuals and hands-on practice in this engaging tutorial on telling time. Step by step, kids learn about the hour hand and then the minute hand, first through the concepts of half past and quarter past and then with more precise minutes. In the practice trials, kids get plenty of opportunity to try their own hand, so to speak, at representing different times on the clock. Extra help gets kids started, and gradually drops away, ready to come back if kids struggle. The free play option is a fun way to play with the clock and discover all the interesting things Einstein can say. Though the day/night changing background nicely provides some context, it might be nice to see some more clues about what could be happening at different times of day to help kids orient themselves. Particularly when kids play on a smaller screen, it can be hard to manipulate the hands just right; kids may need some practice. Finally, the Albert Einstein character is a fun guide and a gentle tutor, even though in this particular setting, it's entirely irrelevant that one of the 20th century's greatest minds is teaching kids how to tell time. (Einstein's appearance makes more sense in the full paid app, of which Human Heroes Einstein's Clock is a separate and unique download.) Despite these shortcomings, for parents looking to help teach their kids how to read an analog clock, Human Heroes Einstein's Clock is a superb choice for some extra help.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how to read a clock as kids play with Human Heroes Einstein's Clock. Listen with your kids to Einstein's explanations and help fill in any gaps if kids don't understand something. At various times of the day, ask kids to look at a clock and tell you what time it is.

  • As kids represent different times on the clock, talk about what happens in their day at that time. What are you usually doing at 2:00 in the afternoon? What time do you go to sleep at night?

  • Talk to your kids about marketing techniques. Why is there an ad in this free app? Is it OK to tap on the ad? What is your family's policy about buying apps?

App details

For kids who love to learn

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