Monday, May 27, 2013

Kangaroo Island Photo Classifying {app review}

SLPs know that just one area of language can have many different levels of skill and difficulty. When you buy an app that targets just one area of language, you need that app to target multiple skills and levels of difficulty. Kangaroo Island Photo Classifying is the new Super Duper app released this month.  The app is really targeting one skill in many different ways. I found it can be adapted for very low level preschool students up to second and third graders by varying the 6 games included and the level of difficulty of the different categories included. 

Let's do a quick look through each of the app's different games. In Class-A-Roo, the kangaroo asks you to find something for him! After hearing the category, find the matching item.

The Picking Parrot game is a category sorting activity. After the student sorts all the items they feed the parrot a snack! 

Sink Ball is just like arcade Ski Ball! Make sure you shoot the ball down the right lane to score your points! Then grab your earned ticket and trade it for a prize.

Turtle River is an game with swimming turtles. As the turtles swim the kids have to sort them onto the correct island. The speed of the turtles adds a little frantic energy to this one! 

Koala Canvas is a 'paint by numbers' coloring book re-done. Instead the kids needs to 'paint by categories'. The concepts was too high level for some of my littles (first grader) but perfectly challenging for a second grader. 

To 'paint' touch the color on the right (ie: food) and then touch any pictures that match that category (ie: apple). When you touch that picture the coloring page is colored in the corresponding color. 

Seal Search is a puzzle app to practice identifying outliers of category groups The students look at 4 pictures and decide which does not belong to the group. As they finish puzzle pieces they disappear to reveal a picture. 

The complexity of the entire app is controlled in the settings where an SLP can determine the number of categories and the members of those groups. A total of 336 pictures are included. I think some of the letter/number sorting opportunities are especially good and not found on other apps. 15 categories are included and up to 5 at a time can be used. If students aren't ready for 5 just use a smaller number! 

The data collection throughout the app is excellent and on-par with similar SLP apps. There is no limit on the number of students you can collect data for. 

Kangaroo Island is on sale for $9.99 in iTunes. It goes up to full price $12.99 June 1. The app was provided to SRN for review. No other compensation was provided and all the opinions are just mine! 

Cons: The app sorts by many different categories, but I'd love to see it sort by salient features as an option. For example, things that fly, red items, items that are cold. These are more difficult for some students because they aren't categories like 'food' or 'transportation' that are readily taught. 

Pros: The app is really flexible for each student. I love that I can decide exactly which categories are targeted giving me the chance to add in new categories one at a time. The app uses up to date data collection tracking for each child. I really like that the difficultly levels of the 6 different games build on each other and have the students practice classifying in different forms. Generalizing the skill like that is often so difficult for children with language impairments! 

Overall I loved the app and would recommend it to friends! That's the real test after all!