The JFK Challenge- a Great New Free App from the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation



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JFK Challenge Just in time for Presidents Day the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum has launched a new FREE app, The JFK Challenge. The app is designed for children from 8-12 years old and teaches them about President John F. Kennedy (JFK) and the legacies his Presidency left behind,  focusing on the Peace Corps and the Space Race. The JFK Challenge app is totally free, with no adverts or in-app purchases and was created with support of a grant from Disney. You can learn more about the app by visiting JFKChallenge.org

 

As the app opens you are transported back in time to John. F Kennedy’s inaugural address as he becomes the 35th President of the United States and the youngest US President elected to office. JFK ‘s voice booms out “Ask not what your country can do for you- ask what you can do for your country.” Historical photographs, video and audio recordings bring history as we learn about JFK’s life before becoming President of the United States, as well as highlights of his Presidency.

In 1961 President Kennedy founded the Peace Corps, a program which continues to this day and has sent over 200,000 trained volunteers overseas. In that same year he challenged America “I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to the Earth.” Players can choose from two missions to complete, where they learn more about the Space Race or the Peace Corps.

JFK1

Peace Corps

In this game you get to take the role of a Peace Corp volunteer who is going to Columbia. First you prepare by learning some words of Spanish. Next you practice digging waterways avoiding obstacles on the way, then learn to make bricks from water, gravel and cement, and use them to build. All of these skills get put to use later in the game once you begin the mission.

You learn some geography as you see countries where other Peace Corps volunteers are going, learn about the projects they will work on, and see photographs of real Peace Corps projects in these countries.

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After training is complete you go on your mission to Columbia, where you work to help provide clean drinking water to a village, and construct buildings using the skills learned in training. You will need to work fast to get the projects completed before the rainy season arrives. Once you have completed the building projects you get to explore the village and learn about local culture.

Space Race

In this mission you get to join NASA as an Astronaut. You learn about the history of the Space race from the time in 1961 that JFK sets the challenge for a man to walk on the moon, until 1969 when that vision becomes reality.

At NASA you first learn to steer a spacecraft and practice operating the lunar module to safely land it. Next as you assemble your spacesuit you learn about its different components and why they are needed.

With your training complete you move on to launch day where you send the crew of Apollo 11 into space and discard the various stages of the rocket once they have done their job. Then you fly your rocket to the moon avoiding debris on the way, before putting your landing skills to the test as you maneuver the lunar module safely down onto the lunar surface. Once you have safely landed you can explore the moon learning about both the moon and the Apollo 11 mission.

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This is a great app for teaching children (and adults!) about JFK, the Space Race and the Peace Corps. I love how it uses historical photos, video and audio recordings to really bring history to life. It uses a combination of the old and the new, combining both archive material and engaging video game activities to both educate and entertain. Although it is designed for children from 3rd Grade up I think it will appeal to an even broader age range – I can see children as young as First Grade enjoying it, and even as an adult I learned from it.  This app teaches history, geography, science, Spanish and encourages exploration and interest in other countries and cultures. This is a very well made app and I would highly recommend downloading it today. A free app that should not be missed!

To celebrate the release of the app the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum is giving away an iPad Mini, you can learn more by visiting their Facebook Page or following them on Twitter .

JFK Challenge from Bluecadet on Vimeo.

To download please use this link: JFK Challenge – John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

JFK Challenge JFK Challenge by John F. Kennedy Library Foundation

Price: $FREE

Take the JFK Challenge – fly to the moon or help people around the world! This immersive app from the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library transports kids back in time to train for the Apollo 11 mission.

NOTE: A fee was received to feature this app.



The Great Inventors by Dream Made – Review



iPad Screenshot 4

What we love…

bright colorful graphics that engaged my son and answered many of his “how was this made” and “can you tell me about how a lightbulb was invented”

What we’d love to see…

Different parental gate, ability to time travel by period rather than just tapping on the clock as well as the ability to see what happens to an item over time (evolving)

Summary

Great animation, educational app that helps children answer many of the – “Can you help me understand” questions

Our Rating

The Great InventorsThe Great Inventors by Dream Made is a universal app for iOS which helps you as a parent answer many of the questions that your children might have.  Questions that you can answer in the app include: who invented the radio, when was the light bulb invented and more.  The app features three scenes that allow you to travel to different times as well as three mini games to test your knowledge after using the app.  Within the app. there is a question mark you can tap on within each of the scenes which pops up a description of the item as well as reading it to you.  The question marks also appear on different individuals like Benjamin Franklin and tells the story of how he invented the lightening rod to prevent damage and fires.  The narration within the app is available in English, German, Italian.

As a parent of a child in kindergarten, I find myself constantly answering questions like, why do we travel in cars now versus carriages or who invented this?  This app is the perfect answer to that in an interactive fun way that will have children engaged and learning from the moment they begin to play.  The app also includes three different mini games, one focuses on matching (via flipping memory cards), the second focuses on on patterning (you see a sequencing and it have to add the next card in the sequence) and the third game has you matching an inventor to an item such as Ben Franklin to the lightening rod and Daguree to the camera.

The app provides three different scenes – all of which allow for “time travel” between them by tapping on a clock.  When you tap on it it moves you a different period in history – and includes animations such as a horse drawn carriage and a hot air baloon.  In the next scene you see airplanes flying, a cotton mill in one era and then in the third scene you see a car driving, rocket blasting off, motorcycle running, and the invention of the telephone.  It was interesting for my son to realize how the items changed over time especially the telephone from a large device to a small smart phone like my iPhone that has a touch screen.

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I loved how the app appropriately illustrated different items from history including a camera, light bulb, and also how it allowed you to travel through time while tapping on different items (like a car) to learn more about it such as Karl Benz inventing a car.  The language to describe each of the inventions was easy enough for a child to understand and navigate.  The illustrations were bright and each of the items was easy to see and then provided the opportunity for me to talk to my son about how items evolved over time such as a car and a light bulb.

In terms of enhancements, I would like to see the parental gate enhanced so it pulls you to a separate screen rather than directly into iTunes.  I did like that the gate was difficult enough that most children wouldn’t immediately be able to answer the question.  I would also like the ability to set language behind a parental gate rather than changing it on the fly within the app.  I would also like to be able to tap on the clock to pick which scene I went to rather than having to go through them in a step by step sequence.  I would also love to see in a future version after an item was invented – what happened in the next era.  When the light bulb was invented for example how has that evolved and changed over time?

This app contains a parental gate which when a multiplication math problem is solved pulls you directly into iTunes for another app that is made by the same developer, in app purchases or advertising.

Overall, I felt this app had great animation, was bright and educational for children and helped answer many of the “how was this invented” or “why do we have” questions that my son asked me.  This app is best suited to early to mid grade school and was fun, interactive and educational all at the same time.  My son enjoyed the learning games and told his teacher about how the lightbulb was invented.

The Great Inventors The Great Inventors By Dream Made

by

Category:
Requirements: Compatible with
Size: 0 MB

$


 
NOTE: A fee was received to expedite this review to the top of our waiting list but this payment has not influenced the objectivity of the review and all opinions have been offered honestly.



Messy Mia & The Tale of Ancient Tech by AvatarGeneration – Review



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Can your kids (or even yourself) have fun without internet or technology? How do you usually entertain yourselves? Do we depend so much on technology that losing it, even for a moment, irritates us and causes disruption to our lives? That’s definitely the case for Mia’s mom. She was angry when she couldn’t find the television remote and ordered Mia to tidy her messy room and look for the remote. But Messy Mia & The Tale of Ancient Tech by AvatarGeneration is more about how technology has evolved over the past generation than how we have become more reliant on technology in our daily lives.

What we love…

Fun comparison of the old and new technology.

What we’d love to see…

Ability to toggle between the old and new technology in the story. Addition of a page menu and text highlighting.

Summary

A rare book for kids to learn about old technology and a great conversation starter for parents and kids to talk about the impact technology has on our lives in the past, present and future.

Our Rating

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While searching for the remote, Mia met a knowledgeable robot who told her the kind of home entertainment and telecommunications technology that her mom had in the past. Mia listened in disbelief that there were no TV remotes, DVDs, CDs, mobile phones, MP3 players nor laptops when her mom was young. She felt sorry thinking about how deprived her mom was as a child and promptly went to find the remote.

I enjoyed reading this storybook app as it brought me back to my youth – the era of CRT TVs, VCR recorders, video tapes, cassette players, cassettes, Walkmans, phone booths, rotary dial phones and internet dial-ups. I can so relate to the mom’s outrage when someone called in while she was on the internet because you couldn’t use both the phone and internet at the same time! I love to bring my kids to the museums, vintage shops and other establishments that showcase items from the past. I would reminisce about the old days and marvel at how much technology has progressed in just one generation.

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Messy Mia & The Tale of Ancient Tech offers the perfect opportunity for parents like us to talk about the old and new technology to our kids. To them, it is inconceivable that we could live without the current conveniences (think iPhones) and they become somewhat appreciative of what they have. Seeing what once seemed impossible is now possible, I hope they will be inspired to dream about the future possibilities and think of new ideas and inventions to further improve our lives.

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This storybook app even has a section for kids to think about how the past technology has impacted the adults, what present technology means to them and imagine what future technology would be like. There are 11 guiding questions to start them thinking. While this section is also suitable for older kids, the rest of the book is appropriate for children up to lower elementary levels. The 4 mini games (Color Mia, Match the Tech, Tidy Mia’s Room & Memory) included in the app are however suitable for preschool children.
 

Overall, this is a wonderful book touching on a topic that is rarely discussed with children but one that carries a timely reminder that we can live without high-tech communications and entertainment technology (and not being so reliant), and an appreciation of life changing technology.

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Messy Mia & The Tale of Ancient Tech HD – AvatarGeneration iPhone – , iPad –

Messy Mia - Tales and Stories of Ancient Tech with Trivia Picture Quiz for Kids Messy Mia - Tales and Stories of Ancient Tech with Trivia Picture Quiz for Kids by AvatarGeneration
Category: Books, Education
Requirements: Compatible with iPad2Wifi-iPad2Wifi, iPad23G-iPad23G, iPadThirdGen-iPadThirdGen, iPadThirdGen4G-iPadThirdGen4G, iPadFourthGen-iPadFourthGen, iPadFourthGen4G-iPadFourthGen4G, iPadMini-iPadMini, iPadMini4G-iPadMini4G, iPadAir-iPadAir, iPadAirCellular-iPadAirCellular, iPadMiniRetina-iPadMiniRetina, iPadMiniRetinaCellular-iPadMiniRetinaCellular, iPadAir2-iPadAir2, iPadAir2Cellular-iPadAir2Cellular, iPadMini3-iPadMini3, iPadMini3Cellular-iPadMini3Cellular, iPadMini4-iPadMini4, iPadMini4Cellular-iPadMini4Cellular, iPadPro-iPadPro, iPadProCellular-iPadProCellular, iPadPro97-iPadPro97, iPadPro97Cellular-iPadPro97Cellular, iPad611-iPad611, iPad612-iPad612, iPad71-iPad71, iPad72-iPad72, iPad73-iPad73, iPad74-iPad74, iPad75-iPad75, iPad76-iPad76, iPad812-iPad812, iPad834-iPad834, iPad856-iPad856, iPad878-iPad878
Size: 95.35 MB

$FREE

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NOTE: A fee was received to expedite this review to the top of our waiting list but this payment has not influenced the objectivity of the review and all opinions have been offered honestly.



Dino Dog – A Digging Adventure with Dinosaurs! by StoryToys Entertainment Limited – Review



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What we love…

Bright engaging graphics, positive reinforcement for completing digging adventures, visual clues and variety of dinosaurs located

What we’d love to see…

for the smaller bones, especially on the iPhone it would be nice to have the zoom and pinch as they can be harder to place.

Summary

Fun app that engages children and encourages them to explore a dinosaur hunt with educational content that engages and teaches

Our Rating


Dino Dog and Bonnie the Bear are on the hunt for dinosaurs in this new universal iOS app targeting preschoolers and early grade school children.  The app has your child “digging” virtually in the underground on the hunt for fossils, bones and more!  Once your child has found the fossils, they clean them up and then can assemble them for their very own collection in a virtual museum.  The app features bright engaging graphics and music that engages children to complete a variety of adventures before moving on to more adventures within the app.  The app features three chapters – each with a different area to dig and explore.  Prior to each adventure, the app features a short cartoon telling about the upcoming adventure.  Narration is available in  English, French, German and Spanish.

My son really enjoyed the app – especially since he likes treasure hunts.  I liked that the app encouraged my son to make choices and find clues in order to complete the adventure and find dinosaur bones.  The graphics were bright and engaging and encouraged him to explore especially the “special rocks” where he could find clues, dinosaur bones or gain special powers like the ability to see bigger portions of the puzzle, dig through rocks and more.  After completing the digging, you used a hammer to break apart the fossils, clean them up and then assemble them together in the right places.

My son did have a hard time with some of the smaller bones – I’m not sure if it was because the app was smaller on my iPhone versus the iPad but it was definitely harder for him to assemble the dinosaurs on the iPhone.  Having a pinch and zoom or easier way to slot them in would be nice.  I would also like to see more information about what is involved in the dig – such as tools to add an additional component of the app or perhaps information about fossils in general and why they encapsulate into rocks.

Overall, a fun app that will keep your preschooler or early elementary aged child interested in digging to find the hidden treasure and learn about dinosaurs at the same time.  There are no in-app purchases, advertising or external links.  There is a parental gate which does include external links, but if it’s done wrong the instructions change to a different type of swipe to ensure that kids can’t get into the area accidentally.


Dino Dog - A Digging Adventure with Dinosaurs!
Dino Dog - A Digging Adventure with Dinosaurs!
by StoryToys Entertainment Limited

Category: Education, Games, Family
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone3GS-iPhone-3GS, iPhone4-iPhone4, iPodTouchFourthGen-iPodTouchFourthGen, 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, iPhoneXS-iPhoneXS, iPhoneXSMax-iPhoneXSMax, iPhoneXR-iPhoneXR, iPad812-iPad812, iPad834-iPad834, iPad856-iPad856, iPad878-iPad878
Size: 393.25 MB

$1.99USD

Screenshots
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Screenshots for iPad
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NOTE: A fee was received to expedite this review to the top of our waiting list but this payment has not influenced the objectivity of the review and all opinions have been offered honestly.