A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Scout's ABC Garden is an early-learning alphabet app from the educational software company, LeapFrog. The game's main objective is to teach the alphabet, both upper- and lower-case letters, but there is also a bit of basic counting in some of the interactive elements. Aside from the main game (which features, among other activities, a "whack-a-mole" type game where kids must tap gophers that pop out of holes), there are three screens of an interactive farm for kids to explore. They can tap on various hotspots to trigger animations and tap characters to hear them speak.
What's it about?
Kids are introduced to each letter in the alphabet, first in uppercase, then in lowercase, and then by phonics sound. Working on one letter at a time, they match the letter in the garden and count as they tap gophers and butterflies. The app includes three screens to explore as well, where kids can toss a ball with Scout or Violet, honk the horn on a car, play music and dance, identify colors on a blooming flower, or pop and count bubbles. Birds in a nest sing numbers and colors, too, reinforcing preschool knowledge.
Is it any good?
In SCOUT'S ABC GARDEN, kids match letters in order to grow produce for Scout, an adorably chatty title puppy. In between familiarizing themselves with upper- and lower-case letters, they'll get to tap on pesky gophers that could ruin the garden. It's just the right level of exciting for a three-year-old. The game tracks kids' progress and they'll win trophies as they move further along the alphabet. Outside of the main game, there are a bunch of cute interactive elements to explore, from animated squirrels who pop-up for a surprise to a talking car that will tell jokes with Scout. Kids can also play directly with Scout, tickling his belly, high-fiving him, and so on. The lessons here are very basic and probably too simple for kids beyond preschool, but for the right audience, this app is can be a lot of fun.
Talk to your kids about ...
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
- Subjects: Language & Reading: letter or word recognition, phonics
- Skills: Tech Skills: using and applying technology
Thinking & Reasoning: memorization, thinking critically
- Price: $3.99
- Release date: April 5, 2011
- Category: Education
- Publisher: LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc.
- Version: 1.0.1
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 3.1 or later
For kids who love preschool learning
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