Music Sparkles - All In One Musical Instruments Collection HD App Poster Image

Music Sparkles - All In One Musical Instruments Collection HD

Great play-along music app for little ones; upgrade is fab.

What parents need to know

Educational value

Kids can learn many musical concepts including instrument identification and design as well as performing with a number of different instrument types (strings, keyboards, woodwind, and percussion). Kids can also learn listening skills such as playing in key and in rhythm, and music theory like scales, intervals, and singing solfege syllables (Do-Re-Mi). The instruments are polyphonic, so kids can play more than one note at a time and in different octaves, and the keyboards are in 12-note chromatic scales. Though it lacks recording and playback, Music Sparkles is still a fantastically rich and interactive musical experience for little ones.

Ease of play

Music Sparkles is very easy to use for kids of any age, language, and ability. Each instrument has a different interface which fills the screen. Kids touch the part of the instrument that makes sound. For example, kids touch keys to play the keyboard instruments or different strings and frets on the guitar fretboard. Kids also touch drum heads or flute blow holes to make sounds.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
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Language
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Consumerism

Twelve additional instruments are available with an in-app purchase of $.99 for a single instrument or $2.99 for the dozen. There's also an easily accessible "More Apps" button on the main screen that takes users to additional apps by the same developer, with links to the Apple App Store.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Music Sparkles is a great freemium musical instrument app for young kids. It comes with two instruments (xylophone and drum kit) and has 12 more available with in-app upgrade. The app's designed to introduce kids to different musical instruments and offers freestyle music making with the option to play along with pre-recorded loops. What sets this app apart from others is that the simulated instruments play like the real thing. The colorful and engaging interface is well designed and very responsive for kids of any age and ability.

Kids say

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What's it about?

Kids choose an instrument, which fills the screen, and play it like the real thing. To make music, they touch the keys on a keyboard or the strings and fretboard of a guitar. Wind instruments aren't blown, but kids touch the part of the instrument that changes the pitch, such as the keys on a sax or the finger holes on the recorder. Kids can also choose 1 of 5 pre-recorded instrument loops to play along with, and explore a treble clef C scale with Do-Re-Mi playback. This play-along app has no recording features.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

MUSIC SPARKLES -- ALL IN ONE MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS COLLECTION HD is a great app for creative exploration of musical instruments. The tunings of the instruments are compatible with the pre-recorded playback loops, so kids are never out of key or sound "off." But the best thing about Music Sparkles is that the instruments play like the real thing. The free version is limited but kids can still jam with it.

The musical journey really unfolds with the in-app upgrade, which is like walking into a virtual music shop with interactive acoustic and electric guitars and pianos, pipe organ, accordion, harmonica, recorder, harp, sax, panpipes, and violin. The violin interface is disappointing because it's inauthentic and tricky to play, and it'd be great if the app had more world instruments. Still, Music Sparkles shines on and provides a jam-packed, true-to-life musical experience, making it a fantastic choice for budding musicians of all ages and abilities.

Families can talk about...

  • Talk about the different kinds of instruments with your kids and categorize into "families." For instance, violins, cello, harp, guitar are in the string family; drums, bongos, cymbals, tambourines are in the percussion family, etc.

  • Listen to music with your kids and try to identify the different musical instruments in the songs.

App details

Devices:iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
Subjects:Science: physics
Arts: improvising and music analysis, music, rhythm
Skills:Creativity: imagination, making new creations
Self-Direction: effort
Communication: multiple forms of expression
Price:Free
Pricing structure:Free
Release date:November 30, 2012
Category:Education
Topics:Music and sing-along
Size:23.00 MB
Publisher:Kids Games Club
Version:3.2
Minimum software requirements:iOS 4.3 or later

This review of Music Sparkles - All In One Musical Instruments Collection HD was written by

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