NxtApp 4 Kids

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
NxtApp 4 Kids App Poster Image
Great concept for math practice, but not a perfect score.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Nxt App 4 Kids provides good basic math sequencing drills for elementary school-age kids. Kids can practice different types of number sequences, including adding one, subtracting one, as well as jumping around within a sequence. Sequences get more challenging as kids solve previous ones correctly; the questions revert to easier numbers if kids answer incorrectly. On the downside, the in-app keypad isn't optimal for younger kids. Still, NxtApp 4 Kids offers good math practice in a cute package.

Ease of Play

The game ramps up in difficulty pretty quickly. There are also some user interface issues. The "c" button for clear and the "Go" button for finishing a sequence aren't set apart from the numeral keys, so it's easy to hit one or the other when trying to answer, thereby inputting an incorrect answer or erasing answers unintentionally. And there's no way to stop or move around the app once you've started a category, unless you enter an incorrect answer.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

There's a "New!" button with a cute photo in the left corner of the main screen to tap for kids to view new apps from the developer. Tapping on one of the new apps will take kids to the iTunes store.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that NxtApp 4 Kids contains timed number sequencing drills for kids to practice basic math skills. Sequencing helps kids master number order, which they need in order to easily learn addition and subtraction facts, so this concept is certainly a helpful building block. The in-app keypad isn't laid out in an optimal way, so that can be frustrating. And the sound effects of farm animals and music can both be a little distracting, so your kid may want to turn those off.

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What's it about?

First, choose which sequence type ("stage") you want to try, then tap the Solve arrow to begin. An onscreen keypad containing the numerals 0 to 9 appears, along with farm animals holding signs with a sequence of numbers, one of which is missing. Tap the correct number or numbers (for those greater than nine) to input the missing number into the sequence. An onscreen timer counts seconds until all questions in the stage are completed. The stage can be repeated, or you can try a different one.

Is it any good?

Nxt App 4 Kids is a good concept, but it has some features that may be bothersome to some kids. The onscreen keypad contains only the numerals 0 to 9, so if kids want to answer with 10 and above, they need to combine the numbers they see, which can be confusing for some kids. Also, the "c" button for clear and the "Go" button for finishing a sequence aren't set apart, so it's too easy for kids to hit one or the other when trying to answer, thereby inputting an incorrect answer or erasing their work inadvertently.

It's also a timed game, so kids who thrive on timed tests will like it; those who don't may find themselves frustrated by the time ticking away while taking in all the colorful graphics and the sounds (which can be turned off).

Talk to your kids about ...

  • If your kid is having trouble with the drills on this app, try placing an old-fashioned number line in front of him or her to give concrete clues.

  • The timer and best times are displayed on this game, but suggest your kid disregard them if doing these sequences under time pressure is frustrating.

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
  • Subjects: Math: addition, counting, numbers, sequences, subtraction
  • Price: $1.99
  • Release date: June 13, 2012
  • Category: Educational Games
  • Size: 7.30 MB
  • Publisher: ICON, LLC
  • Version: 1.2.3
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 4.2 or later

For kids who love learning math

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