Going to the beach creates memories of a lifetime for most kids, and for others, the beach is a minefield loaded with sensory experiences outside the realm of familiar routines. So whatcha going to do? – Call Grandpa and Grandma of course! In Fairlady Media’s new offering Grandma’s Beach Fun, Grandma and Grandpa will show you how to have a great time. Mixing media is this Developer’s specialty, and it adds just the right amount of playful fun and silliness with realistic video to showcase what the beach is all about. That powerful mix of media can set kids at ease when they hit the shore through the mini-games and film clips. The app can be scaffolded for different age levels using Fairlady Media’s stellar settings panel. I’ve used it with kids as young as 4 and as old as 9. This is definitely one in the series that grows with your child or is for kids that have grown up with the Grandma/Grandpa apps and need something a little more challenging.
Inside Grandma’s Fun at the Beach
On the home page, is where parents can access the settings to turn on/off specific mini-games to achieve the best experience for their child. Keeping the rule of the “just right challenge”, make sure that the child is at least 75% successful in the mini-games. This helps give kids the inertia to overcome and persist when challenged. On opening, Grandma asks for the appropriate gear for the beach. This helps preps kids to know what one would take to the beach and it is a perfect time to talk about routines and activities that are pursued at a beach. i.e., WHY we wear sunglasses, WHY we put on sunscreen, etc. Matching and sorting games, search and find, and math games followed by games promoting creativity and literacy. The harder games are the word find puzzle, coconut math, and the airplane rhymes, but there is a lot of support for exploring within each game. I especially liked the word finding puzzles as this is not only an activity that can be pursued over a lifetime, but also teaches 2 point visual gaze and works with spatially discerning figure-ground. The day ends with a video and a superior fireworks display that the kids launch. The only thing I would have changed is that there are links to other apps from Fairlady Media and the app store. I would have loved to have had access to them under the parental gate rather than on the homepage where kids can find them. As kids do, they will explore everything, and at times it is hard to get them out of the app store and back to the game. Otherwise, the game is flawless – and brings back the fun of summer on each and every opening.
I love the Grandpa/Grandma series as there are so many skills to practice or rehearse for daily routines or new activities. It not only allows kids to practice being in a new environment and habituate to new activities but also provides loving support for kids to openly experiment. The use of video takes kids out of a “game” atmosphere and serves as a bridge to real life. And THAT is what makes these apps so spectacular.
- Sand Sensory Bins to touch and tolerate the feel of sand both dry and wet. You can also hide all sorts of hidden treasures within the sand
- Sand Art – Moon Sand, Kinetic Sand, or MadMattr Sand to learn the art of sand castles
- Play Frisbee, Fly a Kite, or Shell Games
- Roll a Beach Ball, Play Catch, or Volleyball
- Water Play with all sorts of cups, basters, and buckets or play in a sprinkler or garden hose – can use an under bed storage bin, small pool, or a traditional waterplay stand
- Read Pete the Cat: Pete at the Beach (My First I Can Read) by James Dean
- Visit a Beach, stroll the boardwalk, get your feet wet, and most of all just enjoy each other!