What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
What kids can learn
Health & Fitness
- body awareness
- gross motor skills
Engagement, Approach, Support
Design is really cool, and kids will get a kick out of controlling the avatar with their own movements. The novelty wears off quickly with the repetition of the running game, but the options to use the coins earned to buy gear for the avatar helps keep kids engaged.
The information about health and fitness isn't very deep but is inspiring. Though kids can manipulate the avatar without actually running and jumping, if they play the game as intended, they're getting spurts of physical activity that can transfer to better fitness and health.
A tutorial runs kids through the commands when they first play the app and can be accessed at any time from the start page. The coach gives encouraging feedback and reminders as kids play. The app links to a website that includes extensive resources to extend learning.
What's it about?
NFL PLAY 60 combines fitness and healthy lifestyle tips with an interactive endless runner game to encourage kids to be healthy and active. Kids get to choose their avatar and then run and jump to collect coins and power-ups, which can be redeemed to buy neat avatar gear. Unlike other endless-runner games, though, the kids are actually running and jumping and turning. The run is interspersed with encouraging words from the coach and tips for a healthy lifestyle. Kids work to meet different short-term goals -- such as collecting four hearts or running 500 yards at one go. Kids also can use the app's activity finder to search for screen-free activities. They can choose from inside or outside play and specify activities to do alone, with a partner, or with a group.
Is it any good?
Parents have to first decide if they're comfortable letting a kid run around while holding an iPad or iPhone. The technology is really cool, so kids will get a kick of out running and jumping and turning to make their avatar move. The play gets pretty repetitious after a while, though, even as goals change and courses get more challenging. It's still staring at a screen, running around or jumping over obstacles, and collecting coins. The activity finder is a great free tool; kids can get ideas for active play inside or outside, with a friend or a group. The health tips are informative for kids and adults (for example: Heart-healthy fats, called unsaturated fats, can be found in olives, nuts, seeds, avocados, and corn).
Families can talk about...
Get active together as a family. Find ideas for activities to do together in the app's activity tab.
Talk to kids before they start playing to establish boundaries about where it's OK to play, run, and jump while holding the device (on grass only, for example).