The Sneetches - Read & Play - Dr. Seuss

App review by
Christy Matte, Common Sense Media
The Sneetches - Read & Play - Dr. Seuss App Poster Image
Classic morality story, games best with grown-up guidance.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

In addition to working on literacy, kids can learn about empathy and respecting differences. They will also work on memory and observation. 

Ease of Play

Simple to navigate. Most of the games will be accessible for all ages, but the word search will be tricky for younger kids. The words appear backwards and diagonally.

Violence & Scariness

The basis of this story is that one group belittles another because of physical differences. While it all ends well, the story never clearly denounces their behavior. 

Sexy Stuff
Language

Some of the characters suggest that the others aren't good enough to spend time with them.

Consumerism

Link from the main menu to the publisher's other apps protected by a parent gate that asks parents to swipe up or down.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Sneetches - Read & Play - Dr. Seuss is an ebook with a dozen games built in. The book is accessible for all ages, as kids can have it read out loud, read it themselves, or auto-play the story. The games range in skill level; little ones may struggle with the word search and possibly the jigsaw puzzle. This is a classic Dr. Seuss story that is familiar to many adults, but younger kids will likely need help to really understand the book's message. Read the app's privacy policy to find out about the information collected and shared.  

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What's it about?

THE SNEETCHES - READ & PLAY - DR. SEUSS includes an ebook and a dozen games. The story tells of the Star-Belly Sneetches who looked down on the Plain-Belly Sneetches and wouldn't include them in their activities. When Sylvester McMonkey McBean arrives with his strange car, he promises to fix everything. But can the Sneetches learn to overlook their differences and be happy in their own skin? Kids can tap on images in the story to see what they are called and hear the names out loud. There are 12 stars hidden throughout scenes -- some require a lot of tapping to find -- and each one reveals a game. The games have some repetition but generally fall into categories: jigsaw puzzle, memory, word search, whack-a-mole, sorting objects, find an object, collect or avoid a falling object, and sequence memory (repeat a sequence). After a game is unlocked, kids can access it from the main menu. 

Is it any good?

This story is a classic for a reason, and kids will enjoy the addition of the games, although some are better than others. The Sneetches - Read & Play - Dr. Seuss is a morality tale that will be obvious to some kids and far too abstract for others. Younger kids may also struggle with the made-up words that Dr. Seuss is known for. Some of the games are boring (catching falling objects always feels a bit tedious), some are of the tap-tap variety (how many balls can you tap?), and others add more interest and fun to the experience. Favorites include the memory games and the object-find games. The word search seems out of place and overly challenging for the target age. Put together as a package, however, this ebook is a strong choice, as the games make it replayable and the silly story is a joyful (re-)read. To get the most out of the story, adults will want to read and discuss with kids.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about physical differences, including hair, eye, and skin color, as well as disabilities. What can those differences tell you about a person? Do those differences make one person better or more important than another? How does The Sneetches - Read & Play - Dr. Seuss teach us to treat those who are different from us?

  • Do you ever see kids being mean to each other at school or on the playground like the Star-Belly Sneetches were to the Plain-Belly Sneetches? How does it make you feel? What can you do?

  • Talk to your kids about screen use and limits. How can kids enjoy digital media in balance with other activities?

App details

For kids who love ebooks and Dr. Seuss

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