The Hungry Caterpillar Play School is an app designed to introduce young learners to a variety of activities they might encounter in a preschool environment. Children can learn to write letters and numbers, compare sizes, read books on a variety of topics, and take colors and combine them to learn about painting. There are structured activities as well as freestyle play such as block building and plant growing, where children can use their imagination to create and storytell on their own. The app also features early-age mindfulness activities where children focus on their breathing, prepare for sleep, and learn about self-awareness in an age-appropriate way. As the children complete these activities, the Hungry Caterpillar receives his prize; a piece of delicious food to eat.
The creators of The Hungry Caterpillar Play School recommend short sessions for children so that they can take advantage of the repetition of the activities without becoming overwhelmed by all the options available. Children are encouraged to spend 10 to 15 minutes with the app one to two times a day. New content is added periodically to keep the app content new and keep children engaged.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Play School has a seven-day free trial but requires a subscription service after its expiration.
Working Memory: Recalling and retaining information in our minds while working.
For very young learners who are just starting to learn their numbers and alphabet, this app is a great way for them to practice their working memory skills. The app provides a template for each letter and number and allows the child to trace the letter with their finger while making the sound of each letter. This allows the child to hear the sound as they are learning to write the letter. The app also puts each letter into several words so that the child can hear how they are pronounced and see them placed in simple words. There is also a “freestyle” area where the child can use any color to trace the letters or numbers without any guidance, allowing them to practice their working memory skills and complete the letter or number while reciting out loud it’s pronunciation or numerical value.
Focus: Getting started and then maintaining attention and effort to tasks.
Many of the games and applications in The Hungry Caterpillar Play School are a great way for younger children to practice their focusing skills in small doses. There is a library of short books that children can read to themselves or videos that walk them through a certain concept. These require focus because for children who are just learning to read or sound out letters, they will need to pay attention to each word and the sounds they learned in the previous lessons.
The app also features short mindfulness exercises that are appropriate for younger children and introduce them to activities that will help them focus on their breathing, their body, and their emotions. This is a great way for kids to feel the benefits of mindfulness and meditation at such an early age and can help with focusing on other activities as well.
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