What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Shape-O ABC's is an educational puzzle game that asks kids to put together a picture and the word that names the picture. Three difficulty levels make the app appropriate for kids age 2 to 6. Kids can change puzzle colors, although not selectively; all colors on a puzzle change together.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- letter or word recognition
Thinking & Reasoning
- part-whole relationships
Engagement, Approach, Support
Colorful graphics and cool sound effects and animations will engage kids as they solve more than 100 puzzles by placing shapes to complete picture and letter puzzles and spell corresponding words.
Kids view shapes and letters and hear a narrator say a letter name (although not the phonetic pronunciation). As kids place puzzle shapes, they see how they fit together to form a picture.
For detailed instructions, the seven How to Play pages must be read by an adult, although there's little need for that because the user interface and option icons are self-explanatory. The app doesn't provide data on completed puzzles.
What's it about?
Kids press Play from SHAPE-O ABC'S main screen, then tap to scroll through pages with dozens of puzzle options. They tap a puzzle and drag shapes and letters into matching shaded portions of the puzzle's picture box. Kids can change puzzle colors by tapping the rainbow option or tap the eye icon for a clue to filling in the shapes. When the puzzle is complete, they hear a rewarding sound, listen to a narrator spell and say the word, and see a cute animated picture.
Is it any good?
Shape-O ABC's would be a lovely puzzle app for kids even if all it offered was puzzles. Each image, constructed from geometric shapes, has the attractiveness of those high-quality European wooden playthings from specialty toy stores. They're a pleasure to look at. Plus, kids can choose from many color palettes for each puzzle, adding a bit of creative personalization. Many of the pieces are similar shapes and sizes, but they're tilted or turned in different orientations, which means kids have to make visual distinctions to put the puzzle together. Then, of course, there's the word-building aspect, which adds a nice extra educational layer to the exercise.
Families can talk about...
Discuss the names of the shapes and colors with your children as they place them in the puzzles.
Search for and view images of the real-life animals or objects seen in the puzzles and see if you and your child can see the similarities in shapes.