Whack A Bone
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Whack A Bone is a series of educational games that teach kids the major bones of the human body. Kids drag bones to the correct place on a given body part and then are challenged to tap the bones as fast as possible while a parrot calls out the names of the bones. The final challenge is a race against the clock to tap all the bones on a skeleton named Harold. Best times are displayed and stored, and a percent score is given in the final game, which engages kids and motivates them to keep trying. Some may find the parrot squawks annoying, but the sound can be turned off without affecting the learning experience.
What kids can learn
Thinking & Reasoning
- applying information
- part-whole relationships
Engagement, Approach, Support
The pirate theme is fun, and a talking parrot adds some humor. Games engage kids by challenging them to race against the clock and beat their previous scores.
Kids learn through memorization and practice, which is an essential part of studying anatomy. They drag and tap on bones while learning their names and locations. A final level lets kids apply what they've learned.
Clear instructions guide kids. Labels, hints, and feedback are given at appropriate times, and levels must be completed before kids move on. In the final game, kids have to review and correct wrong answers.
What's it about?
There are four games in WHACK A BONE, and each game must be unlocked before you move on to the next one. Kids begin learning the bones in the core of the body, move on to the arm and then the leg, and then apply what they've learned to the entire body. There are two levels in each of the first three games. Kids begin by dragging the bones to the correct position on a labeled model. If they get it wrong, they have to keep trying until they get it right. Then, kids tap each bone on the model after a parrot squawks the name of the bone. There's a list you can use if you don't want to hear the squawking. If kids tap the wrong bone, they must keep tapping and get it right before moving to the next bone. After completing the third game, kids apply what they've learned by tapping the bones on a complete skeleton model. The tapping games are timed, and the best times are stored, which encourages kids to keep practicing.
Is it any good?
Whack A Bone will appeal to kids who want to learn about bones in the human body. The pirate theme and timed challenges make it a fun and engaging learning experience. However, once kids have mastered the levels and memorized all the bones, they may grow tired of the games; some extension activities would add value and extend learning beyond memorization and recall. It also would be nice if the timed feature could be turned off so kids could practice at their own pace, if desired.
Families can talk about...
Find and make a copy of an unlabeled skeleton, and challenge kids to label the bones.
Take turns trying to beat each other's scores.