Sid the Science Kid - Sid’s Slide to the Side is a fun and educational application which delivers an episode of the terrific PBS kids' show of the same name, developing into an interactive, animated storybook appisode that reads much like a traditional storybook which includes optional narration as well as illustrations often animated, allowing readers to propel the story with the tap of a finger, bridging the gap between an illustrated storybook and an interactive application, also including two mini-games as well.
Parents who do not know of Sid the Science Kid are missing out on a great educational science-based show, bright and colorful, about Sid and his friends from school who learn about science in ways children will find most engaging.
Here, friction is the topic at hand, as Sid, the main character in this story, joins with his friends to figure out why one can slide across the floor in socks, but not rubber-soled sneakers, making observations and writing in their journals.
I also appreciate how Sid the Science kid teaches not only about science in ways children can understand and relate to, but also lovingly shows healthy family dynamics and socialization at school between friends and teachers alike.
There is a lot that I enjoy about this app. I enjoy tapping on the included illustrated images, making them come alive with animation that pantomimes the story at hand, sometimes using music and other interactions that pertain nicely to the science being taught, such as sliding Sid or another character across carpet as well as including two mini-games that go further into exploring friction.
Push-a-Puck is an interesting game allowing children to slide a puck made from a variety of materials like ice or wood to test their varied frictions. I appreciate how the object is not simply to find the fastest puck, but to choose a puck that will slide into the chalk outline Sid or his friends make on many creative floor choices such as ice from a rink or even a floor made of cheese.
There is also an arcade-styled game allowing the gang to race cars on a variety of surfaces such as grass or concrete, also avoiding obstacles like glue that will slow them down as well as give them more slip - such as an oil slick.
This app would be a nice choice for fans of the show or not who enjoy their children exploring science - especially about topics that they can experiment with at home.
My only issue with this storybook is that I miss the first-person narration and commentary by Sid himself instead of the included narration which speaks in third person about Sid and his friends, including the narrator voicing the dialogue of these characters as they speak instead of the actors that fans of the show have come to know and love.
Likewise, the look of this app is also different from the show. It is a more illustrated style, missing the dynamic computer-generated images that give Sid the Science Kid its sense of style.
I do, however, like the included friction-themed video sung by teacher Suzie - a fun and upbeat section that children will really enjoy, as will their parents.
Although I was honestly disappointed that my favorite elements from TV were not included, this is a well-produced storybook with an effective use of animation and interactions that are thoughtful and engaging.