Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer is a physical toy which includes cards as well as the ability to take a photograph of them and display them on your device. Inside the box are 51 flashcards, 12 non-toxic erasable markers and a QR code which activates the app. Cards inside the box include everything you would find in a home ranging from bathroom items (sink, tub, toilet, towel rack); bedroom (crib, loft bed, bunk beds, lights, flooring, characters, clothing for the characters,rocking chair, bookshelf, ); kitchen (table, counters, plant, laundry basket, stove, cabinets and living room (couch, stereo system, chair.) Note these are not all of the items – they are selected ones that I picked out.
To play, first you launch load the app on your device. Next you scan the QR code which is located inside the Dr. Panda Plus box to activate the app. Then you can take out the cards and start creating. When playing with Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer with my kids – I usually separated the cards into categories like bedroom, characters, clothing and then also by room to make it easier for my toddler to follow along. Each card is double sided – one that kids can color in using the included dry erase markers and the other is already colored in. Once the card is done, you simply hold it up and take a photo of it using the camera on your device. The object is rendered into 3D and then you can place it within the home. My younger son loved taking photos of all of the objects to make his dream house – there were lots of flooring changes along with multiple beds in the bedroom, With my older son – he’s a third grader he picked out specific cards he wanted to color prior to even launching the app. He then colored them in using the included markers and making his own designs. He was a bit more thoughtful in how he organized the house making a kitchen, bathroom, living room and bedroom as well as designing all the clothes for the various characters. To wipe off the cards we used a baby wipe although any soft cloth will work. A few times, my older son didn’t want to erase his creation so it did take a bit more “scrubbing” to get it off. Each house has four rooms – and you can choose where you want the rooms to be placed. When you take a photo the image can be lined up and then it “pops” into 3D mode for placing. When you take the photo it also brings out letters which encourage kids to spell the name of the object they are creating – kids can choose to bypass this. If you accidentally take a photo of an item or too many you can simply place it in the recycle bin.
I loved how easy this app and game were to use. No rules no fuss! I could play one way with my younger son and then with my older son he could be independent and color in his own cards to create the room and design it as he wished. We could use the pre-designed cards or use the cards that we colored on/decorated and play. I found it was easiest to scan things in bunches to complete one room at a time just to make it more fun. My kids also enjoyed making multiple houses – they made one for Dr. Panda, another for Tao and a third for Meimi junior. The also created a bunch of cute clothes for each character to wear. In addition – my older son had a larger set of dry erase markers that he was able to use with the cards so he had more color choices. The box holds the game and markers making it easy to keep everything together. The cards are made of a sturdy cardboard that has stood up to repeated uses and did not bend despite the best efforts of my younger son. The game can be used across multiple devices which was great as it meant my older son could play on his own iPad while my younger son and I could use a different iPad.
In terms of improvements – it would be neat if you could go from house to house within the app rather than having to open each house separately. In addition, it would be nice if there were a “holding area” for you to scan your cards and that way you could wipe them off and make a different design without losing the first design. We tried a few different ways to do this without success. It would also be nice if there were a way to “back up” the QR code just in case something happened to the box. It might also be fun to include mini games within the app from the various Dr. Panda titles to provide different activities for kids to do.
Dr. Panda Plus Home Designer provides a fun augmented-reality like experience which helps kids be creative with art and design while helping to familiarize letters and words. My kids have spent hours playing with the app and each time they create a new house or go into play it’s a fun new experience. I encourage them to narrate and tell me what they are doing and making during the process which also helps familiarize them with various names of objects.
Dr. Panda Plus Home Designer is available on Amazon for $39.99.
Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designerby Dr. Panda Ltd
Requirements: Compatible with iPad2Wifi-iPad2Wifi, iPad23G-iPad23G, iPhone4S-iPhone4S, iPadThirdGen-iPadThirdGen, iPadThirdGen4G-iPadThirdGen4G, iPhone5-iPhone5, iPodTouchFifthGen-iPodTouchFifthGen, iPadFourthGen-iPadFourthGen, iPadFourthGen4G-iPadFourthGen4G, iPadMini-iPadMini, iPadMini4G-iPadMini4G, iPhone5c-iPhone5c, iPhone5s-iPhone5s, iPadAir-iPadAir, iPadAirCellular-iPadAirCellular, iPadMiniRetina-iPadMiniRetina, iPadMiniRetinaCellular-iPadMiniRetinaCellular, iPhone6-iPhone6, iPhone6Plus-iPhone6Plus, iPadAir2-iPadAir2, iPadAir2Cellular-iPadAir2Cellular, iPadMini3-iPadMini3, iPadMini3Cellular-iPadMini3Cellular, iPodTouchSixthGen-iPodTouchSixthGen, iPhone6s-iPhone6s, iPhone6sPlus-iPhone6sPlus, iPadMini4-iPadMini4, iPadMini4Cellular-iPadMini4Cellular, iPadPro-iPadPro, iPadProCellular-iPadProCellular, iPadPro97-iPadPro97, iPadPro97Cellular-iPadPro97Cellular, iPhoneSE-iPhoneSE, iPhone7-iPhone7, iPhone7Plus-iPhone7Plus, iPad611-iPad611, iPad612-iPad612, iPad71-iPad71, iPad72-iPad72, iPad73-iPad73, iPad74-iPad74, iPhone8-iPhone8, iPhone8Plus-iPhone8Plus, iPhoneX-iPhoneX, iPad75-iPad75, iPad76-iPad76
Size: 206.26 MB
Screenshots(Click to enlarge)
Screenshots for iPad(Click to enlarge)
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Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her two sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. My older son loves technology and loves testing out the “latest and newest” apps and tech. I love sharing information about apps and products with others to help them make decisions without feeling overwhelmed with all of the choices.