by Zixxe Pte. Ltd.

Ow!  I have been attacked by bugs.  Are you a parent or a teacher of a pre-kindergartener or kindergartener?  If so, then you will want to download BugMath.  Ug-ug is the main character throughout this educational math game that also sneaks in a little reading and memory activities.  It is interesting that I stumbled across this application today since my little critic happened to be talking about the math skills that he learned at school this past Thursday.  Oddly enough, it just so happened to be the same ones that Ug-ug experiences.

This one application offers five age appropriate games that will fascinate any child. The bugs are silly looking, interactive with the touch of your hand and even curious sound effects.  What child wouldn’t want to explore math with Ug-ug while attacking 100 bugs, counting two digit numbers, recognizing numbers from biggest to smallest, matching and yes, even adding and subtracting.  As I played each game some thoughts came to mind that any parent or teacher might want to know, please keep in mind that I was working on an iTouch:

Bug Attack:  Ug-ug is to zap 100 bugs as they drop down at him.  Loved that the developer thought to give three “life lines” to the player.  If a bug hits the ground or Ug-ug, he/she looses a life line.  The goal is to zap 100 bugs before your life lines run out. Each time you strike a bug it says and shows that number.  A thought – is the iPad experience different with this game?  I sort of felt that it moved very fast and might cause the user to miss the visual or audio of the number they were on.  Regardless of that thought, I liked that if you did happen to get hit or drop a bug that the player didn’t have to start all over, that it just picked up where they left off from.  This particular game will definitely work on a users fine motor and visual skills.

Counting Game: Ug-ug is now learning two digit numbers 11-20.  In this game, users are understanding one to one correspondence along with being able to see/read numerical words.  A user may select any bug and it will begin counting, they are not expected to pick in order if they do not want too.  In the directions they mention that you can use your finger to paint in the numerical word.  Unfortunately, this option didn’t work as well for me – wondering if it was the difference between the screens of an  iTouch versus an iPad or even the size of my finger tip.

Big & Small: Loved this game!!!  A user has to place the four bugs in order from biggest to smallest. Dragging and dropping them into place with verbal reinforcement which always goes over well with my little critic.  In addition, after several rounds of playing, I happened to notice that the developers also thought to make the sizes of each bug different just in case the numerical value didn’t make a connection with the user.  Good thinking!!!

Plus Minus Bugs: Here users have to either add or subtract bugs in order find the right Ug-ug.  This was a more challenging activity for my little critic.  I wasn’t sure if it was the set up of the problem or if he is still new to this mathematical concept.  A thought – I happen to be looking at a problem now 8 + 1 =____.  The way that I wrote the problem is not how it is shown on the iTouch.  It is written vertically, one under the other.  Please do not take this wrong, but visually it appears confusing for this age level. Wonder if in the next version the problem could be written horizontally.

Matching: Ug-ug is asked to find the matching bugs hiding behind the spaceships.  This game works on ones memory.  As you complete levels, the number of spaceships increases.  With the use of sound effects and verbal reinforcements, students will be able to feel successful.  A thought –  the developers might want to think about slowing down the speed of the ships when users have not made a match.  They turn over very quickly and I just wonder if a child will notice what it looks like and retain that for future flips and not feel frustrated.

Overall, I would definitely give BugMath a thumbs up!  Sure there were things that I had “thoughts” on, but they won’t stop my little critic from learning the fundamental skills of math.  If you would like to learn more about BugMath, be sure to check out their website – http://www.totsmobile.com/ or check them out in iTunes by click here.

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