DNA Play

Check dnaplay2out the latest app from the developer, AvokiddoDNA Play.

Avokiddo has done the impossible by translating the difficult and detailed subject of deoxyribonucleic acid into a game of cause and effect. Without explicitly teaching about DNA, this app uses the concept of DNA for play and creativity. When you dive into the app you are prompted to

DNA Playcreate a creature by solving the DNA puzzles that appear at the top of the screen. When adding a puzzle piece correctly, the creature grows a new eye, or a longer neck, etc. Keep matching the puzzles in the DNA, and your creature has been created. Your child is learning about cause and effect as they complete the puzzles, thereby effecting the shape of the creature’s body. After the creature has come to life, several props enter the scene and the creatures play, dance, sing or enjoy each of the props in different ways.  DNA Play is appropriate for children ages 4-9, and is available for iPhone and iPad.

 

DNA Play 1
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KinderTown Tech Toys: Tiggly Math

KinderTown is getting into the holiday spirit and thinking about great Tech Toys for all the children on your gift list.KinderTown is getting into the holiday spirit and thinking about great Tech Toys for all the children on your gift list.

At KinderTown, we’re thinking about you during the season of giving, and we’re going to review the season’s best Tech Toys for the tech-loving kids on your list! The Tech Toys we choose will be both educational and super fun. So join us here each week leading up to Christmas for a new installment.

Tiggly MathTiggly Math

Tiggly Math engages young learners in learning to count, add, and interact with number concepts. The Tiggly Math product includes 5 counting rods that interact with the iPad apps. Young learners will enjoy stamping the rods on the iPad screen in order to engage with the app. Tiggly has created 3 free apps that work with the Tiggly Math product. Tiggly Chef, Tiggly CardToons, and Tiggly Addventure.

 

KinderTown’s Tech Toy Guide:

 

Where to Buy: Amazon, Target, or on the Tiggly website.

Who it’s great for: Children ages 3-7 with interest in a Tablet, early learning centers, or preschools

Educational Value: Tiggly math covers a wide variety of early learning math skills while still allowing for lots of exploration and play. Children love using the rods to interact with the screen and the free cleverly-developed apps that accompany the toy.

Platform: iOS for iPads, Samsung, Kindle, Kurio

Price: 29.99

 

Let’s take a closer look at the experience your child will be getting with each of the Tiggly Math apps:

 

TigglyMath2

Tiggly CardToons: This app provides a basic introduction to the numbers 1-5. Children tap the rods on the screen to create yellow circles to drag and count, along with the narrator. The yellow circles then become part of a cartoon, or “cardtoon,” if you will (they do). The colorful pictures create a story about the number that children adore. The cardtoons are created from torn paper, and make up 25 different stories within the app.

 

Tiggly Chef: The star of this app is the Italian chef who invites children to create their own recipe, to use the math rods to find a certain number of an ingredient, or to add numbers together to find a total. My children love to imitate his accent…especially some of his favorite phrases such as “What  are you waiting for?” and “Let’s get cookin’!” Children can use the rods to create an addition sentence that shows how much of an ingredient there is all together.  Children love the wacky cooking creations they are able to make, all while they’re learning to add, count, measure, and problem-solve!

 

Tiggly Addventure: Tiggly Addventure takes kids into their own math world by making number lines three-dimensional. Children have to choose a rod that will act as a bridge to help their Tiggly friend make it across the number line. The number line problems become more sophisticated as your child plays with the app. Choose the correct rod to help your Tiggly friend make it to an indicated space on the number line. Children navigate the adventure by going across and up the number lines to different levels of the Tiggly World.

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Technology: Castles, Cameras and Connectedness

We are the first generation to parent children in the media-heavy and media-reliant world.

I wake up to an alarm on my iPhone. I use a timer to be sure I don’t burn the eggs for breakfast, and I check my weather app to choose my clothes. I check my email to see if there are messages I could respond to before the kids wake up and I look up the directions to my son’s doctor’s appointment. And somewhere in between I’ve probably checked Facebook.
 
It’s only 9:15 and I’ve clicked, swiped, and scrolled through more media (and its accompanying advertisements) than my parents would have encountered in a week at my age. Although technology has become an integral part of my life, navigating this space with my children can be tricky.
 
I remember the first time I felt disconnected from my son’s media experiences. We were on the floor building with blocks creating an imaginative, tall castle. This castle was especially grand, so my son suddenly said, “Let’s take a picture!”  I made a pretend camera with my hands, the kind where you hold it in a rectangular fashion and push the button on the top with a “click”; he held up his pretend camera, too, but his motion was holding an iPhone with one hand and tapping the screen to take the picture with the other. It was in this moment that I began to think about how different his life would be due to technology than the relatively technology-free childhood I had. Even for someone who is savvy with technology, the feeling was uncomfortable, and I felt disconnected from what he may experience in his own life.
 
We are the first generation to parent children in the media-heavy and media-reliant world. Growing up, we saw technology and the internet evolve, and we learned about it as it became part of our world. Today, our children will never know a world without the internet, texting, cell phones, or computers. As natural as learning everyday words in the environment such as “banana,” “car,” and “spoon,” my toddler daughter quickly said “puter” for computer, as it was a natural part of her environment. These experiences can feel disconnecting for parents, but with purposeful thought and time put into navigating the media world, media can serve as another area for growth and learning for parents and children alike.
 
How do we help our children experience media in a healthy way? It’s all about balance. Try these tips:
 
1. Set a good example: Undoubtedly, you use your phone or computer for work, but try to separate work time from family time. Your approach to media becomes a model for your child to live by. Make sure your example speaks as loudly as your words. Find a permanent place at home to put your device that serves as a storage place, and frees you up at home for a period of time. Be cognizant about how and when you answer your phone when you are with other people. For example, when talking to a friend or your spouse, do you accept phone calls or answer texts? Is meal time a time to have the phone out or next to you? Decide what example you would like your children to follow, and set the lead yourself. It’s a powerful image for the people you’re with to see you reject a call in order to listen to them thoroughly. For an even greater impact, try powering off your phone to give your child uninterrupted quality time, free from vibrations, dings, and notifications.
 
2. Sit next to your child: Every parent has used the phone or tablet to keep a child entertained while waiting for a doctor or sitting in a restaurant. Try not to just use the device as a babysitter for your child. Take time to sit next to them and explore apps together. You can learn many things about your child as they play games and explore apps. Enter their world of entertainment and find out what they find enjoyable and why. Even the process of thinking about what is fun and why can be an enlightening conversation for children and adults. Try playing your child’s favorite game with them, it may be more challenging than you think.
 
3. Stay Organized Digitally: Set up your computer, tablet, or phone for play time and learning time. Sometimes this can be tough for kids to understand, but setting clear expectations and boundaries beforehand can help with the process. Talk with your child about how technology can be used for fun times, and can be used for learning, and often the two purposes intersect. Organizing apps together can be helpful, also. For example, are you using apps to practice math facts with your child? Organize the apps together and talk about when and how you want your child to use them. When your child is using a device, have times for free choice and times where specific applications are used to accomplish a learning goal. Also, use technology to learn together. Many apps are more advantageous for kids when an adult who knows their level of learning is able to provide structure and support to the concepts in the app.
 
4. Observe a Sabbath – Consider setting aside a larger period of time to abstain from media as a family. Sundays are often a good time for this, and you and your family can pursue other restful activities. Explore an art project together, play a family game, get outdoors, take a long walk, or sleep. Whatever you do, try to do it without the influence of media, as a family. Talk about the feelings associated when abstaining from media as a family. Use these conversations to instill your values about technology in your family life.
Media has an influence on your child; stand by their side and enter their world. Guide them with humility, because you are still learning, too, and your children will be thankful for the time you’ve invested.
 
This article was originally published in The Old Schoolhouse magazine.
 
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From Doodles, to Drawing, to Writing!

In this week’s Power Pack you’ll find activities and apps that support your inventive author and illustrator.

Foster your young author and illustrator with the activities in this week’s Power Pack. At this beginning level of storytelling, children can begin to combine their drawing and writing skills to show meaning. Apps included in this Power Pack are:

Sago Mini Doodlecast for Kids

Read KinderTown's review of Sago Mini Doodlecast

Drawing Together!

Read KinderTown's review of Drawing Together!

Handwriting without Tears

Read KinderTown's review of Handwriting without Tears

To find the Power Pack, download KinderTown onto your iOS device. Then:

-Select the Power Pack icon from the menu at the bottom

-At the top left, select the level PreK

-Choose “Experiencing Language” from the list of skills.

-Login and View the Power Pack

We think this is a great opportunity for the world to see the power of the iPad for early childhood learning. Access the Power Pack through the KinderTown app (remember, you must be signed in),  and select the Power Packs icon from the bottom menu to check them out!











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Enrich Your Child’s Language Experience with Power Pack Ideas!

This Power Pack will help your preschooler prepare to read well by encouraging critical thinking and reflective questioning.

Check out our latest Power Pack, Experiencing Language PreK, for ages 4-5. This Power Pack will help your preschooler prepare to read well by encouraging critical thinking and reflective questioning. These are the building blocks for reading comprehension.

 

Apps in the Power Pack include:

 

The Land of Me – Story Time

Read KinderTown's review of The Land of Me

 

Stella and Sam Story Pack

Read KinderTown's review of Stella and Sam

 

Pixel and Parker

Read KinderTown's review of Pixel and Parker

To find the Power Pack, download KinderTown onto your iOS device. Then:

-Select the Power Pack icon from the menu at the bottom

-At the top left, select the level PreK

-Choose “Experiencing Language” from the list of skills.

-Login and View the Power Pack

 

We think this is a great opportunity for the world to see the power of the iPad for early childhood learning. Access the Power Pack through the KinderTown app (remember, you must be signed in),  and select the Power Packs icon from the bottom menu to check them out!











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Vocabulary Power Pack for 2nd Grade Ages 7-8

Use the techniques in this Vocabulary Power Pack to support your more independent learner.

Do you have a second grader at home? If so, then your child’s homework probably consists of some combination of sight words and phonics to bolster and train their minds in one of the most grueling efforts they’ll ever experience in academics: learning to read. Use the techniques in the Vocabulary Power Pack to support your learner at this level. They won’t stay in the trenches for long! Believe it or not, they are on the path to using their growing reading skills to learn about more sophisticated topics.

 

Access the Power Pack through the KinderTown app (remember, you must be signed in!) to read the full review. Below are some of the apps included in the Power Pack:

 

The Opposites

Read KinderTown's review of The Opposites

Bluster! Deluxe

Read KinderTown's review of Bluster! Deluxe

Word Games for Kids Futuba

Read KinderTown's review of Word Games for Kids



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Power Pack: Letters and Sounds Ages 5-6

Do you have a kindergarten or budding learner who investigating letters and sounds? This Power Pack is for you!

Do you have a kindergartner, or budding learner, who is investigating letters and sounds? This Power Pack is for you! Check out the apps we recommend for learning letters and sounds, and a few offline activities you can explore with your child, like Letter Jump, and Letter Stories. Access the Power Pack through the KinderTown app (remember, you must be signed in)! 

 

This Power Pack features the apps:

 

abc PocketPhonics

Read KinderTown's review of abc PocketPhonics

My A-Z

Read KinderTown's review of My A-Z

Starfall ABC’s

Read KinderTown's review of Starfall ABC's

 



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Power Pack: Storytelling

In this Power Pack, you’ll find activities and app recommendations that support your child by translating all their creative stories into print.

This week’s Power Pack focuses on Storytelling for children ages 5-6. Children of this age frequently tell stories aloud that you probably wish were in print. Their creations are often humorous and fantastic. In this Power Pack, you’ll find activities and app recommendations that support your child by translating all their creative stories into print. As you spend the next weeks and months focused in this area, your child will develop stronger oral storytelling abilities with more experiences seeing how stories can be communicated with text and images.

 

Apps featured in this Power Pack include:

 

Pirate Scribblebeard’s Treasure

Read KinderTown's review of Pirate Scribblebeard's Treasure

Story Wheel

Read KinderTown's review of Story Wheel

 

Toontastic 

Read KinderTown's review of Toontastic

 

Access the Power Pack through the KinderTown app (remember, you must be signed in)!

 


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Learn to Read with uKloo! [GIVEAWAY]

We received the game uKloo for Christmas and my children have been enjoying the game together.

 

uKloo is giving away a copy of their Riddle Edition Treasure Hunt Game AND a copy of their Early Reader Treasure Hunt Game. The giveaway will run from Monday, October 12th – Monday, October 19th, ending at 11:59pm Eastern Time.

 

All you have to do to enter the uKloo giveaway is enter a valid email and mailing address in the Woobox entry form below. Winners will be chosen at random, and you will be awarded five additional entries for each referral through the Woobox entry form.

 

Good luck! 😀

 

Children love scavenger hunts, and my children are no different. We received the game uKloo for Christmas, and my children have been enjoying the game together. I have a 7-year-old reader, and a three-year-old non-reader. They work together to solve the scavenger hunt in this game, and a spirit of cooperation is needed to be successful with the game.

 

Read KinderTown's review of uKloo

The game and app uKloo was made by a mom who was challenged by her son’s reluctance to read. He would  hide from her whenever it was time to read. She thought perhaps hiding the “reading” or words would work for his learning style, and uKloo was born. As a teacher, the key to the game is the picture word chart that helps children link a visual picture to common words. Through repetition and their experience playing the game, the words start to stick. This game also serves as a great reinforcement of common words your child may already have learned to read. With summer right around the corner this would be an excellent game for your beginning reader to play, to keep their reading skills strong without them realizing that they are practicing those skills. The hook for kids with uKloo is finding the cards. Marching all over the house finding the clues and reading them was the big attraction for my kids. Use the Picture Helper chart for assistance in reading the words when your child gets stuck. This game has also received rave reviews from parents of special needs children who are learning to read because of its unique approach.

 

Read KinderTown's review of uKloo.

Now, there is an app to pair with the early learning reading game. uKloo the app works like the hands-on game. The app works to build familiarity with basic sentence structure and high frequency words. The app invites children to find the uKloo card hidden in the scene by reading the short and simple clue. Two different scenes are provided, a farm scene and a market scene. Prompt your child to use the picture clues for what word might be in the sentences that they need to read, or use the helpful book icon to display the visual picture prompt chart. Parents, you can adjust the level for your child  (1-10) and the amount of correct answers needed before receiving positive reinforcement. As the levels increase, the sentence structure becomes more difficult and the words are less repetitive. Your child will feel successful learning to read because of the repeated phrases and words on the clues. Unlock surprises along the way for reinforcement for your child.   Use the ? button to find helpful hints. uKloo is free and appropriate for beginning readers ages 4-6.

 

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Vocabulary 3K Power Pack

In this Power Pack you will find activities and app recommendations that support your child’s rapidly increasing vocabulary.

At KinderTown, we’re excited to share with you our next updated Power Pack, Vocabulary 3K. In this Power Pack, you will find activities and app recommendations that support your child’s rapidly increasing vocabulary. As you spend the next weeks and months focused in this area, your child will develop a greater familiarity with rich language through songs, stories, asking questions, and talking. We weave the activities into the natural time you would spend with your child at home.

 

Apps recommended in this Power Pack include: Boats by Byron Barton, Wheels on the Bus, and Don’t Let the Pigeon Run this App.

 

Access the Power Pack through the KinderTown app (remember, you must be signed in)! Then:

-Select the Power Pack icon from the menu at the bottom

-At the top, select the level 3K

-Choose Vocabulary from the list of skills.

-Sign in and View/Print the Power Pack


 


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