Space by Tinybop

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Space by Tinybop App Poster Image
The sky's no limit on this interactive solar system app.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn facts about our solar system, including the names of planets and moons, as well as simple and complex space-related vocabulary ("sunspot," "partially molten mantle," "hydrogen and helium gas," "slushy sea") in multiple languages. Educational value increases for kids who can read or have the labels read to them.

Ease of Play

Simple tap-and-swipe play. No verbal or visual instructions on this open-ended play app. Kids who spend time exploring and tapping random spots will be rewarded with more fun finds.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

Tinybop logo appears upon opening the app, and there's a "More Apps" icon on the app's main screen, which includes icons for all Tinybop apps. Tap on one of those, and a parent gate appears prior to you moving to the App Store, where they can be purchased.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Space by Tinybop is a visually multilayered interactive app that helps kids learn about our solar system through play. Kids can explore each planet, our moon, and the sun, comparing them by size, weight, and many other unique features, such as windstorms, volcanoes, and rocky rings. This app is part of Tinybop's Explorer's Library, and (like the other apps in that series) it includes a downloadable handbook with tips, more facts, and discussion questions for parents and teachers to help kids extend learning offscreen. Read the app's privacy policy to find out about the types of information collected and shared.

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What's it about?

To begin exploring SPACE BY TINYBOP, enter your name and launch a spaceship into space. Tap on the menu icons to the left or right to choose many viewing options and settings, including turning on written labels and choosing one of many languages for those labels. Choose a planet (or the sun) to explore in multiple ways. For example, tap a close-up icon to see what's happening on the planet's surface and what the atmosphere is like. Tap on a snowman icon to check out the weather. View the interior layers of a planet by swiping a bar left, and compare the weight of planets (or the sun) using a virtual scale. By using the parent guide, families can take further learning offscreen.

Is it any good?

Once your kid's rocket blasts off, there's so much to do on this visually stunning app that it feels like it might include infinity and beyond. Tap on any planet in Space by Tinybop and the app zooms in to show more detail. Swipe across the planet to see sections of the planet's internal layers. Explore surface scenes through swiping and tapping to find the interactive options, such as making astronaut footprints on the moon or hurling boulders into Uranus' rings. Beyond the option to view one-word or short-phrase vocabulary labels on the visuals, there's no audio information, so kids who can read (or have a parent read to them) will likely learn a lot more. The Space Handbook that parents and teachers can download from the Tinybop website has even more ways to learn (written facts, discussion questions, images, and sources) about everything introduced visually on the app. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about all the fantastic space-related information in Space by Tinybop and the content found in the companion Space Handbook, downloadable via the Tinybop website.

  • Ask your kid what planet they find interesting and why. What other questions do they have about planets, the sun, or outer space that aren't answered by the app or in the handbook? Help them find the answers.

  • Make a DIY model of the solar system with your kid out of stuff you can find around the house. Use the app's planet size and weight comparisons when choosing materials.

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