App Review: Puzzingo

Puzzingo

Name Puzzingo
Creator 77SPARX Studio, Inc.
Marketplace Google Play & Amazon Appstore
Categories Preschool, Elementary, Vocabulary
Price Free w/ in-app purchases (for Google Play)
MB 33.5 (bigger w/ in-app purchasing
Operating System 2.2
SD Card Yes
My Rating 5/5

Puzzingo or “Kids Puzzle Game PUZZINGO for Toddler and Preschooler with Animals, Numbers, Letters, and More” is a puzzle based vocabulary game.  Puzzle pieces are inside boxes which can be shaken to open.   Each piece is a noun with a written label and is named when selected.  The pieces can be placed into shaded areas to complete a puzzle.

There are currently two versions of this app available for Android Devices.  The version on Google Play (3.81) has the option of in-app purchases of additional puzzles.  The current version in the Amazon Appstore (3.36) does not have in app purchases.  Both apps are free and ad-free.  Many people are reluctant to purchase apps where in-app purchases are available.  The in-app purchases in Puzzingo (Google Play version) require parent verification.  As I talked about in my Security and In-App Purchasing post, I recommend all SLPs set up a pin code for on device purchases.  This will prevent clients or thieves from purchasing unwanted apps as well as in-app purchases.  For more information on how to set up the pin code, click the link to the post above.  With a pin code you can be assured there will be no accidental purchases on this app.

I was given an “all access pass” to the Google Play version by the developer to review this app and I am very impressed.  I can see why this app is one of the most popular apps on the market.  This is the best play-based vocabulary game I have used.  The Amazon Appstore version currently has (free) puzzles for toys, numbers, jungle animals, ocean animals, farm, picnic, and alphabet.  In the Google Play version, you have free access to juggle animals, picnic, dune bug, steam train, farm, sand castle, and costume shop for free.  With in-app purchasing you can get puzzles in each of the categories and sub categories below:

Trains: commuter train, train yard, city train, country train, space train, clown train, train station

Princess & Fairies: fairy house, fairy tailor, fairy rock band, fairy flight school,  frog race, pirate princess, princess

Holidays: Lunar New Year, Santa’s stable, snowball fight, Santa’s workshop, Christmas tree, harvest, New Year,

Cars: mini van, chopper, indie car, stock car, 4×4 truck, clown car, bulldozer, super bike, sports car

Animals: Jungle Animals (another), forest animals, fresh water animals, safari animals, polar animals, grassland animals, Australian animals

Space: observatory, alien hair salon, space station, consolations, solar system, astronaut, space shuttle

Core Concepts: numbers, colors, counting, ocean animals, shapes, toys, alphabet.

There are 12 – 32 pieces (vocabulary words) in each puzzle.  Some of the puzzles have short games to play after they are completed (e.g., racing game with the cars).  The developer occasionally adds more puzzles, so this list may be incomplete in a few months.  I recommend this app to be used as a play-based game during speech language therapy as well as for home use with all preschool and elementary kids.  This app is great for a preschooler, yet still engaging and educational for older children.  My 7, 9, and 10 year old children all like this game.  I have even learned a few words from this game.  I will be giving away a free “all access pass” to the Google Play version of this app this summer, so check back here for more details later. You can view the developers video below.

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Amazon App of the Day: Counting with the Very Hungry Caterpillar

Catterpillar

Amazon’s free app of the day is Counting with the Very Hungry Caterpillar. This app works on counting, vocabulary, quantity, and addition within five levels.  Kids are asked to select the food items  that the very hungry caterpillar eats within the story, quantities are of the food items are also targeted (e.g., “Please eat two apples”).  I tested this app and  would recommend it to speech language pathologists and parents with preschool and early elementary kids working on labeling food and quantities.

The Amazon Appstore can be downloaded on almost any Android Device.  Find out how to install it here.

Auditory Analysis

AuditoryAnalysis

Name Auditory Analysis (USA Version)
Creator Talking Talk
Marketplace Google Play & Amazon Appstore
Category Phonological Awareness
Price $   4.99
MB 33.1
Operating System 2.3.3
SD Card Yes
My Rating 5/5

Auditory Analysis is one of the more interesting and engaging apps I am using in speech therapy.   It uses the built in microphones (in phones and most tablets) to record and repeat audio clips. This allows students to compare their answers to the target answer then choose if they got it correct or not.   All of the students I have tried this with love this feature. They enjoy the ability to hear themselves.  My students also like the two fun games which can be used as rewards.   It has worked well with groups of students or a student using it by himself.

This app works on phonological awareness in 7 different levels: omitting part of compound words, omitting part of a two syllable words, omitting the initial phonemes, omitting the final phonemes, substituting initial or final phonemes, omitting part of consonant blends, and substituting part of consonant blends.  The data is tracked and can be emailed.

This app is currently only available on Android devices. The creator has made a video. Check it out here:

Autism iHelp – Play

Name
Developer
Price
Free
MB
18.4
Type General
Language
Type Specific
Vocabulary
Operating System
2.2 or higher
SD Card
No
My Rating
««¶¶¶ (2/5)

Autism iHelp – Play is another Android App that the start screen is not sizing properly on most of my devices.  This app was tested on a LG DoublePlay, Lenovo A1, and Kindle Fire (1st Generation).  The start screen only sized properly on the Kindle Fire. Access to games and options in cut off on my tablet and only the toys and outdoor activities are accessible on my phone.  Besides this major drawback this app works well.  It provides flashcards with good pictures and voice output (which can be turned off if the options can be accessed).

The games feature is nice. It’s too bad it only worked on the Kindle Fire.   It is a multiple choice game for labeling pictures where the audio is optional.

Opposites Fun Deck

Opposites Fun Deck provides you with access to all of Super Duper Opposite flashcards on you Android device. Like many of the recent Super Duper apps, this one provides the student with a choice of 2 words (e.g., “full” or “empty”) to complete a sentence.
All of the Super Duper flashcard apps provide a high quality audio of the flashcard option  if it is touched. Their apps work great for single student or multiple students at the same time. The data can be sent in an email when completed. The data for the email is created in an html file which is saved on the device/SD card. This app is currently sending the data as an html attachment and not within the email.
For some reason this app is not storing itself on the SD card of my devices.  It takes up over 14 MB of space on your device. All of the other Super Duper flashcard apps I have tested store most of app on the SD card by default, so if you have an device with and SD card, you have more room for other apps and stuff.  Kindle Fires do not have SD cards so it doesn’t matter for them. 
I am giving this app 3 stars until it is updated to send the data within the email and store itself on the SD card; otherwise it works well.  I would recommend using this app for preschool and lower elementary students.