Since I had a child, I have been reading parenting books and articles, talking with teachers and other parents about child’s learning, one common theme always come out is parents’ involvement. The more parents are actively involved in a child’s learning experience, the better the child learn and perform. Today I invited Nick Myers, a qualified teacher in UK telling us about his iPhone / iPad app called Guided Play. Being a husband and father himself, Nick produced the Guided Play app for iPhone and iPad so that other parents can help their pre-school children develop a love of learning through play. Let’s find out how he designed the app and how the app can help parents.
Guided Play helps parents provide purposeful play for their infant children by enriching playtimes through the use of key words that stimulate the exploration of essential concepts. The app covers five areas of infant investigations, which are Drumming, Shaking, Clapping, Speaking and Listening. Each area of play has a 50 second introductory video in which I explain the purpose and demonstrate some of the playing tips that follow. For example, in shaking, you can shake high, shake low, or shake like a giant, or even shake like a princess.
The principal elements of Guided Play are the carefully selected key words linked to each tip. When introduced by an adult these key words prompt children to investigate new ideas, to compare similar and to contrast opposing concepts. These key words, over 500 of them, have been especially chosen for their relevance to children’s future learning. So, whether the intention is to educate a child at school or through a homeschool curriculum Guided Play is there to lay the foundations in communication, counting and knowledge of the world through fun, purposeful play.
The app has been designed with busy parents in mind. Navigation through the app is governed by a ‘three clicks’ principle: select an area of learning appropriate to your child’s current interests, scroll through the activity tips and click one of these tips for the key words. The final step, which is quite unusual for a smartphone app, is to put the device down and play with the child.
Along with efficient navigation Guided Play also contains a tracking tool so that when those rare, spare moments do present themselves parents can keep a record of progress. Progress is measured in three areas: words introduced by parents, words explored through play and words used correctly by children during speech. The app presents these achievements in a progress summary chart.
I intend to build upon the currently available content and then to produce at least 4 more chapters, which would be made available through the in-app purchase system. So, once you have used Guided Play please rate it on the Apple App Store and let me know three things in the comments; what your child has enjoyed learning, what you have learned about playtimes and what content you would like to see in future versions. Nothing would give me greater pleasure than to continue developing a worthwhile educational resource that helps parents assist their preschool children’s cognitive development through the enrichment of playtimes.
– For parents with children aged 1 to 4.6 years
– 77 stimulating activity tips
– Over 500 key words and concepts
– Unique Progress Summary feature
– 13 useful video clips
– Additional explanatory audio tips
– FAQs for assistance with using Guided Play
Guilded Play works on iPhone, iPod and iPAD. It is $1.99 on App Store.
If you would like to check it out or purchase it, please use the App Store link provided below. The cost is the same to you, but iGameMom gets a small percentage. Thanks for your support! Note: The link works for all countries.
Nick is a husband, father and qualified primary school teacher working in England. He produced the Guided Play app for iPhone and iPad so that parents can help their pre-school children develop a love of learning through play.