As parents, we often underestimate how difficult it can be for preschoolers to learn to count from 1-10. While some children pick up the skill fairly effortlessly, others need lots and lots of repetition. 123 Dig is an entertaining app that turns counting practice into a game and features lots and lots of digging.
123 Dig is a new game app by Peter Moss - appbaselearning.com for all IOS devices, including iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. The app is set up very simply, with a number line stretched on the path. Manny the Mole is the "head digger." The other moles fan out and start to dig holes in the ground. After they finish digging their holes, they hop in and start a game of Whack-A-Mole. After they are all tagged, the child uses the right and left arrows on the top of the screen to move to the number that matches the number of holes. When he reaches the correct number, he presses the "shovel" icon, and Manny starts digging. At first he uses his hands, but as the number of correct answers increases, he brings out the "real diggers," the backhoe and the steam shovel. Out from under a cloud of dust and dirt pops the correct answer, and if the child's guess is right, the moles exit the scene using helicopters, skateboards, and even a space ship.
There is a menu button on the screen that allows parents to select the difficulty level (guided, easy, medium, challenge) and the language (English, Spanish, or French). There is also the option of turning the background music on or off. I recommend using the guided level the first time the app is used, in order to see how the game works.
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Peter Moss, the developer of 123 Dig, has come up with a clever way to incorporate digging, Whack-A-Mole, and counting practice into one app. The user interface is intuitive and easy to understand, even without any verbal instructions. It focuses only on the numbers 1-10, but in the Challenge mode, there are missing numbers that your child must remember. This is the type of app that was designed with preschoolers in mind- not complicated or confusing, just good fun with a solid purpose. If your child is a digger and is ready to learn how to count, I suggest you introduce him to Manny the mole and 123 Dig.
123 Dig is availabe for downlaod via the iTunes App Store - iOS Universal
RRP - $2.99/£1.99/€2.69
At the time of this review, 123 Dig contains no ads and no in-app purchases. It does not contain links to the iTunes store or to social media. Parents can be confident their child’s privacy is protected when using this app.
Review by Julie Peterson, a speech/language pathologist (SLP), starting her 26th year serving children with special needs ages 6-14.
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