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TinkerBox HD
Fun with engineering
Publisher: Autodesk

Why we love this app

This app has “fun” written all over it! It doesn't focus heavily on computer science, but throws in plenty of other engineering technology and related topics. There are plenty of mechanical elements that users get to manipulate such as iron bars, springs, chain belts, rotating motors, switches, and more. The game requests that these items be placed and tied one to another to cause a reactionary effect to reach the ultimate goal of the specific puzzles, with targets varying from pressing a button to throwing balls into baskets and more!

What it teaches and how it works

The app offers the student an opportunity to solve engineering problems and make use of basic engineering principles and gravity affects to achieve the particular goals, using a minimal number of different implements. Once all the elements are placed, students can press the play button and see how things go. If their contraption doesn't work, students can go back in and tinker with their elements to achieve the desired results. The only lacking thing is that this is designed as a game, with little curriculum support or teacher interaction. A teacher or parent would need to take what the student has constructed on screen and explain the relevant physics phenomena or engineering principles involved.

Why your kid won't be able to put it down

This is an extremely addictive game as the problems get increasingly more complicated and involved, requiring more elements to interact with each other to solve the puzzles. The animation and visual appearance is very intuitive and appealing with little instruction required.

appoLearning Report Card
Educational Content
Features specific educational objectives dot dot dot
Fosters critical thinking dot dot empty dot
Adapts to kids' skill level dot dot empty dot
Kid Appeal
Intellectually stimulating for children dot dot dot
Instructions are clear and simple dot dot dot
Well-suited to age group dot dot dot
Assesses progress and proficiency dot dot empty dot
Parents and teachers can assess progress dot empty dot empty dot
Features and Design
Unique in its concept, design and approach dot dot dot
Engaging design and repeatable content dot dot dot
Excellent value for price dot dot dot
Doesn't require additional in-app spending dot dot dot
Safety and Privacy
Doesn't expose kids to external services or advertisers dot dot dot
Doesn't ask for personal data dot dot dot

Report Card Methodology

Our experts evaluate apps based on factors such as educational efficacy, kid appeal and privacy.

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