A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
What's it about?
An animated blob named "Blob" helps kids set up their device for WONDERSCOPE. You'll need to grant permission to access both the camera and microphone, which needs to be turned on with volume at the max. When you tap on one of the stories, Blob helps you find a well-lit clear location to land the story "pod." Then, watch as characters jump out and scenery unfolds on top of your chosen location. Move the device around to follow the action and when prompted, tap objects on the screen or say your lines out loud to converse with the characters.
Is it any good?
It feels almost magical to watch as suddenly animated characters and scenery pop up all around you as part of two engaging stories. The developers of Wonderscope gave good thought to many details, including lovely graphics, great voice acting, and nice functions like re-sizing and rotating the story pod. Getting through the story is not always a smooth process however. Depending on how clearly kids enunciate their words, for instance, the app may not recognize that kids have read their part (though there is an option to skip reading out loud). And, depending on how much kids move around, the story pod may lose its place in the room or kids may have trouble finding the action. At the time of this review, there were only two stories available. Little Red the Inventor is the more interesting and interactive of the two. Though since nothing changes in the stories, once kids have gone through them once or twice, there's not much to interest kids in a repeat visit. Yet, with its use of AR, Wonderscope provides a unique, and mostly well-designed, experience for kids.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how the AR aspects change how kids experience the stories in Wonderscope. What does it feel like to watch the story happen all around you? Does it make it more interesting? Why or why not?
Discuss the characters in Little Red the Inventor. Was it safe to tell the wolf that grandma's house was the yellow one? Why did the wolf call Little Red a delicate flower? How did Little Red prove him wrong?
If kids were inspired by the daredevil stories in the free introductory story, help them find out more about the people profiled. Go to the library or search the internet to find out more about them.
- Devices: iPhone, iPad
- Subjects: Language & Reading: reading
- Skills: Communication: multiple forms of expression
Tech Skills: using and applying technology
- Pricing structure: Free to try (Download includes one story; $4.99 for additional stories.)
- Release date: November 19, 2018
- Category: Books
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures
- Size: 427.50 MB
- Publisher: Within Unlimited, Inc.
- Version: 1.17
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 11.0 or later
- Last updated: December 12, 2019
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.