A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that NumberShire is a Web-based game that teaches and reinforces early math skills such as number recognition, counting, adding, and subtracting. The activities are aligned with the Common Core standards curricula for kids age 4–7. In addition to math, NumberShire teaches kids the value of being helpful. The game is designed for use in the classroom rather than at home, with a teacher dashboard and discounts offered for the purchase of bulk licenses.
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What's it about?
NUMBERSHIRE is set in Tally-Ho, a rustic village inhabited by friendly animals. Players create their own anthropomorphized character, then help the villagers with various tasks that all involve numbers in some way. This includes counting groups of nails at the blacksmith's shop, helping a musician sort the coins in his case, and writing numbers by tracing them with the mouse. Kids receive a score for each activity, and upon completing the day's lessons they earn rewards such as new clothing and pets.
Is it any good?
NumberShire is a warm and inviting setting for kids to practice basic math. Each set of activities is grouped around a theme relating to an ongoing storyline -- such as building, baking, or preparing for the big parade -- which helps kids feel a real sense of accomplishment and progress. That said, there's no way to customize the experience based on the player's age or aptitude, leading to some uneven levels of challenges within the lesson groups. But, in spite of its quirks, NumberShire is a compelling way to teach and reinforce an otherwise dry subject for a young audience.
Talk to your kids about ...
- Platforms: Linux, Mac, Windows
- Subjects: Math: addition, counting, subtraction
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: applying information
Responsibility & Ethics: honoring the community
- Price: $14.99
- Pricing structure: Free to Try, Paid ($14.99 per student, $99 for 30 students.)
- Available online? Available online
- Developer: Thought Cycle
- Release date: July 1, 2014
- Genre: Educational
- Topics: Numbers and Letters
- ESRB rating: NR
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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.