I think my five-year-old is similar to most other kids her age. She loves playing on my iPad, and she’s better at using it than most adults I know. If I let her, she’d spend all day playing games and watching those annoying unboxing videos and cake making tutorials. (Seriously, what five-year-old is into cake decorating how-to videos?)
But I do think there is a time and place for limited electronic entertainment. When we’re waiting in a long line somewhere, or I need a break (hey, I’m human!), or just because she wants to play a game. I much prefer having her actively engaged, learning, and interacting with an educational game than passively watching TV, so I’m always on the lookout for well-conceived and well-designed games that meet these criteria. One of these is Kuato Studios’ Safari Tales, an interactive 3D app aimed at kids ages 4-10 and designed to enhance literacy skills.
In Safari Tales, Tee can play as one of five baby animals: an elephant, leopard, lion, rhino, or crocodile. Players start out as a baby elephant then find and wake up the other animals to unlock them as playable characters.
You start by setting up an account with your child’s name and reading age. Unfortunately, you can only have one account at a time. This is one of my only disappointments with this game. I wish it were possible to have more than one player account for families with multiple children.
Tee really enjoys playing Safari Tales. She loves exploring the virtual African savannah teeming with wildlife, searching for artifacts and stickers, and collecting those stickers to earn achievement awards.
She loves playing the mini games and fun activities scattered across the landscape, like this one. Rock out with the animal band!
Take an exhilarating ride down Whirlpool Falls!
Or just go crazy decorating the animal characters with colours and patterns. Find berries around the game world to get more colours.
And when Tee wants to learn more about something she’s seen, or she’s not sure where to go next, she can ask the in-game guide, Darwin the meerkat. Using the spinner, she can construct over a thousand different questions and get relevant and fact-filled answers. She doesn’t even know she’s learning and practicing her reading skills!
What’s really unique is how the game records everything Tee does during her play session, and then creates miniature storybooks that can be read either on her own or with me. The game will save multiple stories that can be reread whenever she likes. I love how this makes Tee both the adventurer and the storyteller!
Safari Tales also has a Parent Corner where I can set up a PIN to restrict game access, personalize Tee’s play experience by setting the reading age, control how long she can play, and set up email notifications every time she creates a new story.
Safari Tales is the top-selling paid iOS game in Apple’s Kids category, Entertainment category, and the top-selling paid app overall in the UK, and I can see why! It’s fun, educational, and is helping to keep Tee’s reading skills sharp during her summer vacation. Definitely worth the cost! We liked Safari Tales so much, we bought their first app, Dinosaur Tales, too!
Disclosure: This is a sponsored conversation. All opinions expressed are completely honest and my own. Your experience may differ. This post contains affiliate links. This West Coast Mommy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. I will receive a commission if you purchase through my link, at no additional cost to you. This income helps pay for the operating costs of my website – thank you for your support!