Dr. Panda Town by Dr. Panda Ltd. – Review

Dr. Panda Town by Dr. Panda Ltd. – Review



iPhone Screenshot 1

What we love…

open ended creative play that helps kids in a variety of community settings use imaginary play skills

What we’d love to see…

a rack for clothing, ability to kick and play with the soccer and basket ball

Summary

Dr. Panda Town is fun and just enough different from other apps on the market which make it enjoyable for my kids to play.   Each of the three areas are fun and have unique content like a water scene inside the park or a picnic or even shopping at the grocery store.

Our Rating

Dr. Panda TownDr. Panda Town by Dr. Panda Ltd is the first free app with in-app purchases or IAP offered by Dr. Panda games.  Dr. Panda was founded in 2012 and has a number of apps available for iOS and Android with great open free play options.  This app includes in-app purchases for a park and a supermarket as well as a home setting.  For purposes of this review, I will review both the park and supermarket settings contained within the app.  The app opens with Dr. Panda pulling up to the town in his yellow car.    If you try to open up the park or supermarket and have not purchased them a parental lock pops up before taking you into the iTunes store which requires you to enter your year of birth.  Of note, I got the app bundle on one device and had to “restore” my purchase on my second device to be able to access each of the three places.  We used language to describe each of the actions which made it great for practicing language.

Inside the house, there is a living room, kitchen with variety of foods as well as the ability to cook and mop the floors.   Upstairs in the home is a bathroom and a kids bedroom. My kids in particular liked the attic where they found treasures like a rocking horse and antique television.   The characters are down at the bottom by the Dr. Panda logo and you can add and move them around within the different portions of the app.  I also liked the recycling in each of the locations as well.  Inside the grocery store reminds me a lot of Dr. Panda Supermarket with items to place inside your basket as well as different items like soap, toothpaste and milk.  When we played, I actually gave my younger son a “picture list” of items for us to place inside the basket prior to checking out.

iPhone Screenshot 4

My toddler also  liked the soccer ball and wanted to “kick” it with the characters – something we couldn’t figure out how to do, we also tried to bring it to the park to play with as well as the basket ball but couldn’t make it work.  We also cooked on the grill outside.  My toddler loved the park – he enjoys going to the park and he loves Dr. Panda Ice Cream so he was delighted to see the ice cream stand in the park.  My son’s favorite part was dispensing each of the candies from the machines as well as eating the cookies.    Inside the park there is a variety of playground toys like a see-saw, slide and even clothing to change into as well as a picnic.    We enjoyed giving dog a ride in the boat – although he needs a life jacket!  Playing in the skate park was fun as well going back and forth.   My toddler loved the animations of the airplane and motorcycle as the characters rode them.

Up in the attic it would be fun if the television played promos for other Dr. Panda apps – right now there are a variety of random images with characters from the app but no real cohesive things shown.  My toddler also wanted to “talk” using the phone which currently just rings and lets you take it off the hook.  My older son asked if we could decorate the treats inside of the supermarket as he is getting older and likes to help me cook — perhaps a baking app might be in the future?  Other enhancements might be using money to put into the slot for the candy or to pay for the vending machine and cafe in the park.  I’d love to see some of the items we make in other Dr. Panda apps incorporated here to give kids a taste of some of the great fun they can have with other apps.  I would also like to see a clothing closet or rack for all of the different outfits to change into – perhaps this could be on the bottom with all of the characters?  My older son also wanted more “healthy” options for the picnic including fruits and veggies so we must be doing something right!

For me, once I tested the house, I knew I wanted more and got the combination of the supermarket and park for $2.99 IAP because my kids hate being locked out of anything.  That makes them all the more determined to use it!  In app purchases are protected with a parental gate which requires your year of birth and then you are pulled to iTunes.

Dr. Panda Town is fun and just enough different from other apps on the market which make it enjoyable for my kids to play.   Each of the three areas are fun and have unique content like a water scene inside the park or a picnic or even shopping at the grocery store.

You can download it free with in-app purchases on Google Play.

Dr. Panda Town
Dr. Panda Town
by Dr. Panda Ltd

Category: Education
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone4-iPhone4, 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
Size: 125.56 MB

$FREE

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.

 

Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. They have a variety of devices including an iPad, iPhone, and an iPod and is often found with a device! 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.
 Sound Salad – Help Mr. Ear by Sorting Sounds by Funny Yummy – Review

Sound Salad – Help Mr. Ear by Sorting Sounds by Funny Yummy – Review




iPhone Screenshot 2

What we love…

Engaging and easy to navigate format. Unique, whimsical and visually appealing graphics and animations. Fun music and engrossing sound effects

What we’d love to see…

A setting which would allow for each sound to be played again as needed. For impulsive kids, it would be helpful to not allow the note to be dragged for matching until the sound has been played. As an SLP, I would love to see a data collection option to help track how a student is progressing in his/her auditory perception skills.

Summary

Overall Sound salad is an app of excellent quality that fosters listening and attention

Our Rating

Sound Salad - Help Mr. Ear by sorting sounds

Sound Salad by Funny Yummy Studios is an auditory perception app that requires players to match sounds to the correct object. Funny Yummy Studios is also the developer of the addictive “Catch the Wally” where you play hide ‘n seek with a spider in a brick wall and Funny Yummy, a delightful interactive story book for younger children. As with their other apps, Sound Salad has high-quality mixed-media graphics and animations which are unique and quirky.

There is a short video at the beginning explaining how all the sounds got mixed up. Your mission is to help Mr. Ear sort out all the sounds and return peace and harmony to the city. The engaging game format and imaginative animations will keep kids playing until they reach the next level.

iPhone Screenshot 1

Visual prompts are provided on the initial screen to show how to drag the musical note to the matching object. When a mistake is made, the page resets until the matches are made correctly. This builds memory and learning skills instead of just allowing kids to make random guesses to pass the level.

The easy setting allows for each sound to be played individually and then to immediately make a match. For a greater challenge, the advanced mode automatically plays all the sounds and then requires the matches to be made from memory. Neither setting allows for repetition of the sounds which may become a source of frustration for younger children.

iPhone Screenshot 4

Most of the matches are common objects such as animals, instruments, or vehicles, but some are less concrete. For instance, the sound of a lullaby is represented by a baby’s crib mobile. In addition, some of the most challenging matches include musical concepts portrayed visually. For example, a rhythm pattern may be represented by a rock formation or a pitch pattern by a diagonal graphic indicating rising pitch. While these may be tricky for younger users, these conceptual images help to build logic and inference skills.

There are 4 modes of play which allow you to set the number of objects to match from 2, 3, or 4 items. All of these levels can be played on either the easy (play sounds individually) or the advanced setting (match sounds from memory). You can also adjust the speed of game play by adding a time restriction to increase the challenge for older kids.

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The game is available in 11 different languages. There are no in-app purchases or third party advertising. Recommended for ages 3-10.

 

 

In summary, Sound Salad is an outstanding and well-developed app which helps to develop listening skills in children of all ages. It is useful for promoting attentiveness and auditory memory as well as inference and logic skills. As a speech pathologist, this app will be very useful in therapy to help develop auditory perception skills. It could also be used to promote expressive language by having kids name and describe the objects pictured and the type of sound being produced. These are all skills necessary for educational success. My own 3-year old found the app to be funny and engaging. He loved the animations of the silly ear. He couldn’t put it down.

iTunes Link: Sound Salad – Help Mr. Ear by sorting sounds – Funny Yummy Studio UG


Sound Salad - Help Mr. Ear by sorting sounds Sound Salad - Help Mr. Ear by sorting sounds by Funny Yummy Studio UG (haftungsbeschraenkt)

Price: $2.99 USD

Help Mr. Ear to get out of the Sound Salad – a place in which all objects’ sounds got mixed together.
Sound Salad is a sound-object association game which trains concentration, attentive listening.

iPhone Screenshot 5
Shari is a married mother of four from Illinois. She works as a speech pathologist in a rehab setting and loves to use apps in therapy. She is a self-proclaimed “Appaholic”- always on the look out for great apps!
 Featured App: Read with Phonzy by MeowTek

Featured App: Read with Phonzy by MeowTek



iPad Screenshot 2

Read With PhonzyRead with Phonzy by MeowTek is a free universal app for iOS which features speech recognition to understand how well kids pronounced words using a character named Phonzy who provides prompts on the words.  The app requires that you opt in via email to use it and understand the terms and conditions.  It utilizes speech technology which recognizes and assesses the specific word that you are focusing on in the sentence.  It works best with children and does work well in a noisy environment like a busy home or a place where there is background noise.  As children pronounce words correctly, they can unlock the word which is then put into a gallery.  It also helps kids build confidence in reading (especially sight words) and improves skills of sentence building and thinking quickly.  We tested the app in a variety of environments including with a television on in the background, at a local park and in a classroom with other children.  Each time Phonzy was able to zero in and understand the words being spoken without picking up the ambient noise.

iPad Screenshot 4

One of the great things for me about the app was that I could help my son focus in on specific word types which he would learn and then as he got better with the pronunciation we were able to go back and re-listen to where he might have previously stumbled.  The app helps you correctly pronounce words and encourages children to read out loud – without a lot of corrections “in the moment” which then helps to build self confidence and sounding out skills.  MeowTek collects the audio recordings to improve the speech technology of the app and increase recognition, but no personal information about your child is collected.  Phonzy currently focuses on key words and important phrases, with the end goal of understanding the entire sentence.  The app is PRIVIO certified which means that MeoTek has COPPA compliant privacy practices to protect your child’s information and the verification via email is the method of ensuring that a parent understands that their child is using the app.

To use the app, Phonzy presents the user with a simple sentence similar to the one above with one specific word highlighted.  Your child reads and records the sentence and if the highlighted word is pronounced correctly, you get the object which is then placed in your gallery.  The words presented are appropriate for children from late kindergarten through mid-elementary school or approximately end of grade 3 according to the ones that I saw.  My son gained huge amounts of confidence when reading with Phonzy aloud because I wasn’t always trying to correct him and he didn’t feel “pressured” to perform on the spot.  My son liked that Phonzy would recognize his words most of the time and that he could easily re-record them as needed.

iPhone Screenshot 2

Phonzy is currently working to understand additional speech and speech recognition technology.  Currently, Phonzy is programmed to understand the specific highlighted words, very occasionally he will misunderstand a user however, as my son used the app more we found that Phonzy was correct in 18/20 trials.  The data collected from the app is made anonymous and is used to build and improve on speech recognition technology, it is never shared with any third parties and neither are the actual recordings.  I also loved that I could save the sentences that my son was saying and share them with his speech therapist to show his progress over time.

Overall, this is a great free app that encourages children to increase the number of words that they can read and earn some fun gallery prizes doing so.  It was a great self confidence booster for my son who struggled at times reading out loud and now has built up some confidence as he works through using the app and practicing new words.  We also liked knowing that we were helping Meowtek improve their speech recognition technology and perhaps, learn from some of the challenges that my son was having.

 

by

Category:
Requirements: Compatible with
Size: 0 MB

$


Also available on Google Play and Amazon

NOTE:  This post was sponsored by Meowtek but all opinions expressed are mine and are given honestly

Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. They have a variety of devices including an iPad, iPhone, and an iPod and is often found with a device! 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.
News: Successful Dyslexics Pen Red Letters for Awareness

News: Successful Dyslexics Pen Red Letters for Awareness

2nd October 2016 – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – AUSTRALIA

 

Successful Dyslexics Pen Red Letters for Awareness

What do author Jackie French, Olympian Alex Edmondson and Philanthropist David Pescud all have in common?

They have all overcome the struggles of dyslexia to achieve great success in their fields. They have also all written their own Red Letters in support of the Make it a Red Letter day campaign that is raising awareness for dyslexia and shining a light on the changes that are long overdue in the Australian Education system.
french
Jackie French, an award-winning Australian author, writes a letter to her fellow dyslexics, encouraging them to never give up and to soar! She tells them that even though school is hard they can achieve anything they want if they follow their passions and work hard.  Read Jackie’s letter.

“If you’re dyslexic you have two choices: you can give up, or be determined, learn to focus, learn to work. Because we’ve had to do that, dyslexics who don’t give up tend to be very, very good at what we do. Talent is common. Genius is talent plus determination. There’s a good chance you’re going to have that.” – Jackie French

 

alexAlex Edmondson, an Olympic cyclist, writes about his struggles through school but by having a supportive family and finding his passion he has gone on to achieve more than his wildest dreams.  Read Alex’s letter.

“If you are struggling with dyslexia and you want to throw the towel in that’s all normal, but what you need to do is stand up and say to yourself, “You know what, I am better than this and I can overcome it.” – Alex Edmondson

 

pescudDavid Pescud, founder of Sailors with disABILITIES, discusses the importance of mindset and having positive experiences. He believes schools should prepare us for our future, to get us ready to go into the world as young adults, with tools that are appropriate to our needs whatever they may be.  Read David’s letter.

“For the responsibility of our children future lies with us all. If you cannot help, then get out of the way, because we are about making a difference.” – David Pescud

 

Jackie, Alex & David have written their Red Letters alongside parents and children that are advocating for change. As a community, dyslexics and their families are banding together to have their voices heard.

The ‘Make it a Red Letter Day Campaign’ is aiming to raise awareness and create discussion in the broader community, the media as well as political and education leaders. The campaign encourages everyone who is touched by dyslexia, parents, siblings, teachers and tutors to also write their own red letters to help show all sides of living with dyslexia.

To read inspiring letters and learn more about the campaign and competition please go to  http://www.myredletter.com.au/

The ‘Make it a Red Letter Day’ Competition and Campaign runs until October 22nd  2016, has been organised in conjunction with the ‘Light it Red for Dyslexia’ event to be held nationally on October 15, 2016, as part of World Dyslexia Day.

The two events coincide with Dyslexia Empowerment Week (16th to the 22nd October).

The ‘Make it a Red Letter Day’ Campaign and Competition are volunteer initiatives by the combined national Dyslexia Support Groups to raise awareness and create change for dyslexia across Australia. The colour red was chosen to reclaim and empower dyslexic students who all too often see ‘red’ in a negative way on their school work and assignments.

‘Make it a Red Letter Day’ competition encourages children (aged 5 to 18) touched by Dyslexia (diagnosed or suspected) to write a heartfelt ‘Red letter’ about dyslexia (without spelling or grammar correction) to someone they believe could influence change, e.g., a politician, teacher, principal, the media or someone famous. Although ‘written letters’ are the intended medium, for inclusion purposes children will also be able to submit their entries in other mediums (such as film, art, dance) – allowing for dyslexic creativity.

Our Sponsors have donated over $10,000 worth of prizes, and the competition will be judged by the 2015 Senior Australian of the Year, Author and proud Dyslexic Jackie French.

 

 

 

Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. They have a variety of devices including an iPad, iPhone, and an iPod and is often found with a device! 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.

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