Bottom line: Children ages 3-6 dress a character to match the season. A nice basic app with clear objectives and not too many distracting bells and whistles. Kids learning to dress themselves are the target audience, but this app could be useful in special education classrooms as well.
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Kids Clothes & Seasons: Learn to dress up from Pyjamas Apps is a dressing up game with a very specific focus - the player needs to dress his or her character in appropriate attire for the weather. I'm pretty sure that this app has a niche in the app store as I can't think of any other dressing up app that has this particular aim, but feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.
Your child starts by choosing either a boy or girl character to dress up, and each time an outfit/ weather combination is completed correctly the next one is unlocked. Once all of them are unlocked they can be revisited any number of times. The character begins in his/her pajamas and it is your little valet's task to choose the correct clothes by looking out the window and deciding what is appropriate for the pictured weather.
There are 77 different types of clothing from which to choose and kids can even colour-coordinate if they wish. When your child thinks she's got her little characters dressed appropriately to go and play outside in comfort, send them out the door and see what the response is - if she gets balloons, hurray, they're appropriately attired for the weather. If she hears some sad trombone music, there's something amiss. I do love it when developers show their sense of humour through their apps, and this one has some fun little moments that really made me smile. If the clothing chosen is wrong there's a cute little reaction from the poor character - in winter, he/she turns into an icecube and needs to go back into the house for a hot chocolate; in the windy autumnal weather, he/she gets a touch of the ah-choos and needs a hot lemon tea before deciding on the next outfit. This was the only bit of the game that was navigationally just a little bit tricky.
Even though my daughter could tell by the character face that something was wrong with the outfit she'd chosen, she wasn't sure what needed to be done next. Once I'd explained that she needed to press the back arrow to go back into the house and try again, she was okay, but it's not immediately obvious what to do here. Oh, and don't forget to check the hatstand for the appropriate headwear/raingear/neckwear. This caught her out quite a few times. She could have done with some visual or verbal hints or instructions in these cases, but mostly the objective is quite clear.
Along with the objective to dress correctly, there are 6 interactive elements to be found in each scene - 3 indoors and 3 outdoors - and the player gets a star for each one as it's discovered. This is a sort of added-on extra which doesn't really provide much - the indoor ones are the same in every scene (the teddy bear, the blocks and the lights). And although my daughter did have some fun pulling apart the snowman in the winter scene and tossing the teddy bear around indoors, this extra 'task' doesn't actually add very much to the overall game.
The game is aimed at children aged 3-6 which I think is spot on as this is just the right age group to understand these concepts and choose appropriately. It would also be helpful for special needs learners as a fun way to reinforce these life skills. The focus is very clear, but I think that working through the app with a parent/teacher would be of benefit as there are no verbal instructions and some of the visual cues may be missed. The one thing that I felt this app was missing was some sort of hints/instructions for when the player is stuck. I don't think that it specifically needs verbal instructions but visual cues would certainly come in handy and would make this an app that could be used more autonomously by young children.
The 'For Parents' tab needs to be held down to activate (hurray!) and within it are the objectives of the game and the usual external links. The graphics are bold and bright and not cluttered with loads of extraneous detail. There are sound effects with every tap/move/ animation which add an appropriate amount of energy to the actions taken.
There are currently two levels that are locked which promise some new scenes with a future update. It's also currently iPad only but the developers plan to make it universal for all devices in future updates as well. This really is a wonderfully basic game that is fun for a few plays for children who are learning these skills, but I see it really being of benefit as a supplementary learning tool in special education classrooms.
Eleanor Holland lives in sub-tropical Australia so it's pretty much sandals and t-shirts all year around. Except in winter when she puts socks on with her sandals, which is considered high fashion here. smartappsforkids.com was paid a priority-review fee to complete this review in an expedited manner.