Do you learn with your hands?
At Fundamentally Children we often seem to be comparing physical toys with virtual games/apps, such as in our recent article comparing real and virtual play mats. We certainly feel there is a place for both. We all love physical toys and would never wish to see them absent from any child’s life. However, there are many great things about apps and amazing ways in which they can extend learning and engage children (so long as they are used as part of a balanced play diet). The typical issue with apps is that ultimately the gameplay is all restricted to the screen. At least it normally is – but not with the Tiggly products.
I’m always looking for good examples of products that successfully combine physical toys with virtual play. It’s a fast growing area in which we hope the physical toys will help combat the sedentary nature of much ‘app’ based play whilst the combination of toy and app will add something unique and fun. However, it turns out this is hard to achieve. Tiggly really stood out for us as a company who are getting this right. When we observed children playing with all 3 products we could immediately see how the physical toys added activity, learning potential and fun to the apps.
The added learning potential was particularly strong for kinaesthetic (hands-on) learners, that is those of us who find it easiest to learn through touch or movement. If you’re someone who can only keep concentrating in meetings or lectures by writing notes, often use props when you’re demonstrating things or tend to use the phrase – let me show you – you’re probably a kinaesthetic learner. You may alternatively be an auditory learner (who learns best from verbal instructions) or visual learner (who learns best from images/graphs etc) – or a combination of two or all three of these.
Do you know which learning styles best suit your children? It’s an interesting thing to consider, particularly if they’re struggling to learn in any areas. It’s well worth thinking about ways to build in all 3 styles of learning when you can to give them the best chance to take it in!
The fabulous thing about Tiggly products is that they provide well for all 3 learning styles. For example Tiggly Safari, one of the 3 Tiggly Shapes apps, repeats the name of the shape (potentially in multiple languages), shows you the shape on screen and requires you to find the physical shape and place it on screen. This certainly works, I watched my own daughter aged 20 months using the app for the first time.It was fascinating to watch her pause as she looked for the right physical shape (an altogether different experience from choosing from a list on screen) before proudly placing it on the screen. She quickly went from showing no interest in shapes to knowing them all and being able to say them (and the names of all the animals included) after just a few days with Tiggly Shapes – that was 9 months ago and she still regularly asks for ‘my shapes’. This was the sort of story we’ve heard again and again from children trying Tiggly Shapes.
Tiggly Math is also extremely clever in the way it utilises the math toys with the 3 free associated apps. Many maths apps focus on numbers when teaching early maths skills but there is far more to maths than reciting numbers. Tiggly Addventure is inspired in the way it uses Montessori principles to help childrenunderstand the concept of quantity and addition, and children love it! Tiggly Chef is simply genius in the way it combines such a fun (and in itself educational) topic as identifying and creating recipes with slowly moving from teaching numbers and quantities to the basics of addition.
Tiggly Words – the newest Tiggly product – is another winner with Tiggly Doctor being particularly enjoyed by our little testers, needless to say the gross elements were their favourites! This really extends a child’s vocabulary and helps children to grasp the importance of vowels while they solve their patients ills. This element of role-playing is brought into a number of the Tiggly apps along with storytelling and creativity adding even more areas for children to develop and further increase their understanding of the world.
The Tiggly products seem to have really nailed it. The apps themselves are not just fun but often hilarious for children to play whilst obviously educational. The physical products clearly add value to the apps and yet the apps can still be played when the physical products are not to hand which is wonderful. They give children real pleasure when they get things right and avoid any criticism when they don’t which is so important to building their confidence. The Tiggly products manage to combine so much that is important in great apps and toys – we really are proud to recommend them.
We are so delighted that Tiggly has officially launched in the UK. We strongly recommend adding these to your list for the summer holidays – the shapes all fit neatly in the drawstring bag provided making them an easy thing to take with you on journeys.
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Tags: auditory, digital play, kinaesthetic, math apps, math toys, physical toys, play ideas, visual development, visual learning, vocabulary
This post was written by Fundamentally Children