Fido & Pumpkin Position Words is an app designed to help young children learn about position words such as “under,” “in,” and “beside.” The app presents the title characters in animated pictures, and asks children to complete a sentence telling the animal’s position relative to something else in the picture.
Bright, colorful animations
Optional audio narration/questions/answers
Incorrect responses trigger a demonstration animation to compare
Optional background music
Fido & Pumpkin Position Words is a high quality app that will help young children learn about position words. The app is intuitive to use, and developers included clear instructions immediately following the opening screen. There is an option to “skip instructions” in the lower right corner of the screen, but I could not get this to work. While having the instructions is great, it should be easier to skip over them once you are familiar with the app. Also, each screen of the app should have an option to exit and return to the home screen. At present, this option is only present at the end of each activity.
This app does a really good job of introducing position words to young players. Words covered include in, outside, beside, on, behind, up, down, under, over, between, and in front. There are 11 activities, one for each word. The eye-catching animations clearly demonstrate each one, which will help keep young learners’ attention. Players can choose which section to play, or can use a “play all” button to go through all eleven sections.
I was particularly impressed with the management of incorrect responses. If a player chooses an incorrect position word, the animation immediately shows what that would look like and how it is different from the correct response. This is a wonderful feature, that will truly help youngsters better understand the meanings of position words.
That being said, the app does lack the practice that would cement learning. While children can replay to their hearts’ content, each segment is exactly the same each time it is accessed. The words are the same, the animations are the same, and even the order of the multiple choice answers is the same. It would be easy for a child prone to memorizing to remember the correct responses without really thinking about the meanings of the words. It also reduces the amount of play time before the app will become boring for many.
This app’s main entertainment value likes in the colorful illustrations and animations. These will attract and hold children’s attention very nicely. The title characters are very child-friendly, and the voice overs are narrated by children with outstanding expression and intonation. The main drawback to the entertainment value of this app is the fact that it is always the same on each play of the same segment. Even if the answer choices were to be randomized, that would help with the extreme predictability. It would also be fun if there were segments where the user used the device’s drag and drop feature to place items in positions relative to fixed things on the screen. Those two changes would add quite a bit of value to the system.
This app costs $1.99 on the App Store, which is a good value if your young user needs to develop skills with position words. However, the app’s static nature and limited number of position words do limit its value somewhat.
Fido & Pumpkin Position Words is a fun app to help young children learn about position in space, covering words such as “in,” “up,” “down,” and “between” with colorful animations and multiple-choice endings to sentences that describe the characters’ positions.