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Seedling Grow

App review by
Mieke VanderBorght, Common Sense Media
Seedling Grow App Poster Image
Plant a seed, watch it grow with this simple tracker.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn about what plants need to grow as they experience for themselves watching a seed grow into a plant. Kids track their plant on a daily basis to see its progress. A time-lapse video makes it easy to see how their plant changes and provides great satisfaction. If parents supplement with information and feedback, kids can learn a lot more about plants and how they grow.

Ease of Play

Creating and tracking plants is easy. Some app navigation could be more user friendly.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Seedling Grow helps kids plant, care for, and track the growth of real plants. That is, this is a companion app for actually growing plants. Seedling Grow can give kids suggestions for easy plants to grow and helps them set reminders for when to give the plants water. Kids can also take a daily picture of their plant, which then get made into a time-lapse video. To access these features, users need to allow access to their device's camera and allow for push notifications. There are links in the app to the developer's web page, which has suggestions for using the app. The developer is also a vendor and has various items for sale on their website. On a slightly hidden information page, there are icons to connect to a variety of social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook. A parent gate, in which users must answer a multiplication question, stands between all the above connections to sites outside the app. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your (or your kids') information is collected, used, and shared and any choices you may have in the matter, and note that privacy policies and terms of service frequently change.

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What's it about?

The first step in SEEDLING GROW is to choose a plant to grow. Pick from five suggested plants, or enter your own -- either way kids need to have the seeds in real life. Plant the real seeds and use the app to take a photo. Set notifications to get a daily reminder to take a photo and for days and times to water. Once the plant is set up in the app, name it and tap the tips icon to read gardening hints. As the plant grows and photos accumulate, kids can make a time-lapse video of their plant's progress. Earn badges for milestones such as creating your first plant, or watering for 10 days.

Is it any good?

Solid connections between on and offscreen activities are nice to see, even if this plant tracker doesn't have too many unique things to offer. The main functions of Seedling Grow are that it sets reminders to water plants, makes it easy to create a time-lapse video, and provides an organized space for motivating kids to engage with plants. Because there are other ways to set reminders and make time-lapse videos, there's room for an app like this to offer a whole lot more. For example, the existing growing tips are basic and sparse, so expanding those would be great. Or, there could be games or information about the parts of a plant and the science behind how it grows. All the same, some families may find it inspiring to have these functions together in a presentation that's explicitly set up to encourage kids to grow plants. Since Seedling Grow depends on watching real plants grow, parents will need to be actively involved. Kids will need help finding and purchasing the necessary supplies and may need help caring for their plants. Parents will also have to relay the notifications that come daily and remind kids to water and take photos of their plants. If even something as simple as Seedling Grow can inspire kids to try their hand at growing a plant, then it's definitely worth a look -- especially for free!

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about kids' experience growing plants with Seedling Grow. What plants are they interested in growing? What does their plant need to thrive and why? What do they see each day as their plant grows?

  • Get into the growing with your kids. Help them remember to water and place the plant to get the right amount of sunlight. Then, enjoy the results of your labor whether they are beautiful flowers or yummy herbs.

  • Read the developer's website for some fun extension activities to enhance your kids' learning.

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