Our daughter loves the family iPad. Ever since she realized that her big brother was actually interacting with that screen thing he’s always glued to, she’s wanted her own turn. But it was hard to find something that was entertaining, educational, and age-appropriate.
Then I stumbled upon Originator’s Endless apps, and now I rarely see her playing anything else.
While they might sound like an offer at the local T.G.I. Friday’s–all-you-can-eat jalapeño poppers, anyone? No thanks–it’s actually a series of educational apps available on a number of platforms, specifically aimed at familiarizing young children with letters and numbers.
Endless Alphabet introduces the Endless Monsters, a group of cute, curious creatures who illustrate the definition of the word displayed on the screen. In order to see the definition, your child has to assemble the word by dragging the squirming, chatty letters into the right order. It’s easy to do, but rewarding: the video vignettes are funny and made our daughter cackle nearly every time she solved one of the 70 word puzzles.
If you’re hoping to get your youngster comfortable with digits, Endless Numbers is perfect. Again, the Endless Monsters are back to help reinforce the meaning of all the numbers. Our daughter was dragging the numbers around, putting them in the right sequence and filling out simple equations in no time. I loved how each Number Monster has circles on them corresponding to their number, and the child has to essentially check off each circle. The app narrates this, counting up with each push of the screen: “One, two, three, four, five!”
Both my daughter and I loathe the countless cheap tablet games that have terrible touchscreen detection. The Endless Learning apps are responsive and precise. She giggles when she drags a letter around the screen and it wiggles and shouts out its names over and over again: “Three! Three! Three!” “B! B! B!” “Plus! Plus! Plus!” It sounds like it might be annoying for the parent, but… surprisingly, it’s not.
And when she completes a sequence or equation, the resulting scene is always engaging, well-animated, and educational. There are no time limits, no failure, no stress. She can drag a number or letter around for hours if she wants, never completing a puzzle but still learning about that number or letter all the while.
Endless Alphabet is available for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone. It’s $6.99 for the full version, although there doesn’t appear to be a trial version on iOS.
Endless Numbers is on iOS and Android, and is $11.99 for the full version. You can try it out with 5 numbers, and then buy the rest (up to 100).
Review materials provided by Originator.