JuniorTube Edu - Interactive Videos for K-12

App review by
Patricia Montic..., Common Sense Media
JuniorTube Edu - Interactive Videos for K-12 App Poster Image
Unique video-curation tool not the user-friendliest.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn to varying degrees depending on the videos parents choose for their kids. There's great potential for self-direction with the annotation feature to note reactions and augment images, especially if parents and kids talk about smart strategies for how to use it. 

Ease of Play

It can take a while to get channels set up; annotation features are cool but not especially intuitive.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

In the built-in channel, kids will encounter a few videos that feature toys and games, but parents can weed these out.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that JuniorTube Edu - Interactive Videos for K-12 lets adults choose and share YouTube videos with kids. Through a variety of settings, grown-ups can curate and control the content kids see. Various features allow kids to interact with the content, such as speeding up, slowing down, and annotating videos. Even though parents can hand-select videos, it's still a good idea to monitor what your kids are watching, especially if you haven't previewed the content. Read the app's privacy policy to find out about the types of information collected and shared.

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What's it about?

JUNIORTUBE EDU - INTERACTIVE VIDEOS FOR K-12 lets adults customize and control their kids' YouTube video-viewing experience. To use it, adults use a computer or mobile device to create custom channels that include videos they've chosen. Then they sync those channels to the app and let kids roam free. Teachers also can use the app to create a custom YouTube channel and share it directly with students via an access code.

Within the app, kids have lots of options for viewing and interacting with videos. When you pause a video, you can slow it down (tap the tortoise) or speed it up (tap the tortoise). You also can annotate videos with drawings or text and save them for future viewing. Previously viewed videos turn gray after viewing, making it easy to track progress, and kids can drag and drop videos they like into different playlists.

Is it any good?

There's a lot to like about this video curation tool, but some features might not be totally intuitive. An intro video about how to use JuniorTube Edu - Interactive Videos for K-12 hits all the right notes for parents: This app is all about them having control over the content their kids see. In addition to the built-in, very kid-appropriate Junior Tube channel, kids can see only the content their parents select. It can be a bit tedious to set things up, but these are some high-value features. The interface may be less visually inviting and easy to navigate than some other video-viewing apps. Also it's unfortunately a little tough to use the video-annotation feature; it's a great idea, but it's not especially intuitive to understand how to save annotations correctly. Further, keep in mind that some of YouTube's most addicting features -- such as the ability to autoplay the next video -- are still in place, so one video can run right into the next. Context and parental guidance are still key: Be sure to monitor and guide your kids' use of the app in real time. Still, the video-annotating feature, ability to easily keep track of what's been viewed, and super strict parental controls make this a great fit for families.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the rules for watching videos online and on JuniorTube Edu - Interactive Videos for K-12. What kinds of videos are OK? What do you learn from watching videos, and what do you want to explore further?

  • Talk with your kids about the videos they watch and how they choose them. Make sure they watch with boundaries rather than linking mindlessly from one to the next.

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
  • Skills: Tech Skills: digital creation, evaluating media messages, social media, using and applying technology
  • Price: Free
  • Pricing structure: Free (full access to all features $9.99)
  • Release date: March 21, 2015
  • Category: Photo & Video
  • Size: 9.00 MB
  • Publisher: Nehloo Interactive LLC
  • Version: 5.5.2
  • Minimum software requirements: Requires iOS 7.0 or later.

For kids who love videos

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