A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Kids can learn skills for reading comprehension and problem solving as they add free-form artwork to colorful kid-themed landscapes in ItzaZoo. Kids read or hear questions that prompt them to draw in objects. Objects are then brought to life in the story. Maybe they sketch in a snowflake that then falls from the sky. The story line helps kids associate words with objects and action in a fun and fanciful way. Questions also challenge kids to think logically and experiment to find answers. Learning to read is a magical experience as kids' art comes alive within the game.
This game sends the message that reading can be fun. It also encourages kids to express themselves through art, because everything they draw in the game comes alive and is incorporated into the ongoing stories. Kids can play with animals that are either female of male.
Positive Role Models
The animals that you interact with are friendly, kind, and silly. They express emotions in response to what you draw. If you fail to provide something essential (like a door in the house you draw for them), they may express dissatisfaction, but then they simply ask you to fix it. Kids can play with animals that are either female or male.
Ease of Play
This game comes with just the right amount of help. The controls are easy to figure out.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that ItzaZoo software is a great way to get kids interested in reading. By playing with charming zoo animals who communicate with you via talk bubbles that can be read aloud, kids join in adventures by creating their own artwork for the animals. The drawings get incorporated into the game and animate via a revolutionary technology called "Living Ink." The technology behind this game is truly amazing to behold.
Is It Any Good?
ItzaZoo is truly a remarkable piece of software. It brilliantly uses funny, silly characters to attract kids to the game, and then delivers a story in a way that motivates kids to read. By asking kids to contribute to the story by drawing things and then animating their drawings and incorporating them into the story, kids commit to this game. They are motivated to read the questions asked by the animals so that they can figure out what to draw next. This amazing "Living Ink" technology anticipates what the child might draw and then takes what is drawn and makes it fit within the story. It fills in the child's drawings with appropriate color and detail and then resizes them to fit the situation. For example, when you are playing with the turtle, he asks you to draw him a new shell. Whatever you draw, the game resizes it to magically fit on his back.
Another great aspect of this game is its replayability. Every time you play, you have a different experience because your drawings will always change. This game is appropriate for kids ages 4 to 8; and perfect for those just starting to read. It helps them to decode words by associating highlighted words with objects that they draw. This is children's software at its best – don't miss this one.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.