Disclaimer: I received a product code in exchange for an honest review. All opinions, as always, are 100% my own.
Disney Publishing has just released a new app for iPhone and iPad, Jake’s Never Land Shapes and Patterns. My kids were super excited to give this app a try, because not only do they like to watch Jake, but they are both math geeks like their Mama. (So, shapes and patterns are right up their alley.)
In this app, characters from Disney Junior’s “Jake and the Never Land Pirates” took us on a treasure hunt through games and a story (complete with interaction with Captain Hook, Evan’s favorite villain). The games have three levels of fun for the kids:
– Shadow Puppets: Drag and drop matching shapes onto Circle Rock.
– Rolling Hills: Help the crew make a path by completing patterns.
– Lightning Bugs: Spot and trace shapes in the Cave of the Twilight Treasure.
Evan, who is not quite three, loved the Shadow Puppets game because he’s great at “matchy-match” activities. Arianna enjoyed Rolling Hills because she’s just started to do some work with patterns at school. Both of the kids were okay at the Lightning Bugs activity, but definitely enjoyed the other two a lot more. The games are were I see the value of the app as they are great for repeat play.
In the games, you earn gold doubloons for completing levels. Let’s talk about those doubloons a quick second – this actually stumped me. I couldn’t figure out how to “grab” them, and when I did, it closed the app. I’m still not 100% sure how to “grab” them! (If you know, send me a comment!)
As for the story, we enjoyed reading along with it at bedtime, but I’m not sure how many times the kids would read it without memorizing the plot. The voices are the same as the ones used from the characters on the show, which is great from the kids’ perspective. You can also play the games during the story, which extended our bedtime routine in a way that I’m okay with. (Note, I wish there were a few more stories or songs in the app, this would up the value in my mind.)
There’s also a “Pirate Puppet” feature where you can “trade the gold doubloons you earned in the shape games for fun pirate attire, record a silly pirate phrase, and watch as your puppet dances to lively tunes”.
My kids were glad to add this app to their growing library of fun for bedtime, and both give it two thumbs up.
Designed for kids ages 4 and up, Jake’s Never Land Shapes and Patterns features three leveled curriculum activities that support shape and pattern identification. Kids can match shapes, complete patterns, and trace their way to treasure – all while Captain Hook is hot on their trail! (App price is $2.99, available on the iTunes Store. This app is NOT compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPod Touch 3rd and 4th Generation, and iPad 1.)