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Too Many Teddy Bears
SCREENSHOTS

Too Many Teddy Bears

1/30/2015

2.99

While cute Teddy Bears abound, these six preschool learning games are a mixed bag.
The Bottom Line
Each of these six learning games could have been better, but they are all playable.

Overview

In Too Many Teddy Bears, Maddy's room is so full of Teddy Bears that her mother suggests she give some away. Instead of complying, Maddy offers to let the player enjoy games with her favorite bears.

How to Play

Kids play six learning games with Maddy's Bears. They count cooking ingredients with Chef James Bear, use their memory with Beardini the Magician, and find hidden objects with Detective Sherlock Bear. With Billy Builder Bear, players put together toys. The twins, Tommy and Tess set up concentration games involving cards facing down which the player turns over to find matching pairs. By visiting Candy Bear's factory, kids sort sweet treats by colors and shapes.

App Analysis

On the positive side, the app presents graphics filled with bright and colorful scenes where adorable Teddy Bears invite you to play. The rhyming dialog at the beginning is fun, although Maddy seems to thwart her mom's wishes. Adults will enjoy the clever naming of the bears, including Chef James Bear (for Chef James Beard), Detective Sherlock Bear (for Sherlock Holmes), and Beardini the Magician (for Houdini the Magician).
Unfortunately, all six learning games falter in some manner. Some miss crucial learning opportunities. With the counting activities with Chef James Bear, kids must listen for the target number of the ingredient to count. Showing the number as well would be better, so that visual learners could more easily figure out how to play. The Chef Bear activity also misses the opportunity to introduce kids to different types of foods. Kids hear the request to count "these" with an image shown, instead of requesting to count zucchinis, mushrooms, and such. Likewise, the Billy Builder Bear activity misses a learning opportunity to identify the parts of a toy or object when players drag and drop parts onto a blueprint. This same lack of identification plagues the otherwise fun matching game with the twins Tommy and Tess, where Maddy fails to call out the geometric shape when it appears.

Other misfires can be found in the pace of some of these games. For example, in the candy sorting activity, the items appear on the conveyor belt in rapid succession. It is difficult for little hands to select the correct candy before it disappears. While activities that challenge quick-thinking have a place with older children, they create undue pressure with preschoolers. Likewise, in the counting games with Chef Bear, the ingredients appear for too short of a time before falling off the shelves.

Some of the games start out too hard for the targeted audience and don't come with hints to mitigate this issue. For example, the memory game with Beardini the Magician starts with six objects appearing in the sand. Maddy appropriately names each object as it appears in the sand, thus facilitating the player's vocabulary growth. However, when the magician lowers his curtain to remove one of the six objects, Maddy doesn't normally offer hints if your child is struggling. And if your child misses three times in a row, the game simply resets without showing the player the correct answer. Since there are five rounds to this game, it would have been better to start the memory game with fewer items displayed and gradually add in more. The same problem plagues the hidden object puzzles with Detective Sherlock Bear. The objects are very difficult to find, and the app doesn't provide kids with a hint to look in a certain area of the screen.

The praise offered the player is very repetitive and quickly becomes annoying. And if you leave an activity, it doesn't remember your progress.

Best For

Since many of the games start out hard and don't adjust down, Too Many Teddy Bears seems most appropriate for 5-6 year olds.

This Too Many Teddy Bears app review was written by Jinny Gudmundsen.

All tech products are judged on a five star scale by looking at the following factors: fun, education, ease of use, value, and technical.

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Too Many Teddy Bears
Released: 1/29/2015
Company: StoryToys Entertainment Limited
Price: 2.99
Platforms: iPad
iPhone
iPod Touch
Available: Apple App Store

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