Meet the Insects - Village Edition Review

Posted by Amy Solomon on February 18th, 2013
iPad App - Designed for iPad

Meet the Insects - Village Edition is an excellent educational app that contains a vast amount of insect facts that will delight all ages from toddlers up through high schoolers and beyond.

Few apps have such a wide age range as Meet the Insects - Village Edition - one in series of bug-related apps. I am very impressed with the inclusion of narration for the majority of this app, making reading not a requirement to enjoy this application, although there are a few areas that will best serve older children who can read and write.

From the home page, one will see this app broken into six sections. I personally think that this app is best appreciated if one starts off with the “Insect Story,” which covers such topics as explaining what insects are vs. other creatures such as spiders - that are not, as well as insect life cycles, how insects pollinate flowers, the sounds insects make, and other interesting facts about flies in a household setting.

This section includes illustrations with light animation as well as video clips of insects and delivers a plethora of information which will make entomologists smile. I have learned a lot from listening and watching this video, with very good, clear and concise narration. I was simply blown away by how much information has been delivered this way.

Once this terrific overview is finished, venture over to “See the Insects” which will introduce users to different orders of insects such as Hemiptera insects which have needle-like mouths, or Diptera insects, with a single set of wings. Selections can be made by tapping insects directly or by choosing an order to scroll the different bugs to learn about. I love how butterflies are also represented as well as beetles and crickets and other types of insects that make noises.

Each of these insects is represented with well-written and narrated text which further explains a great deal about these bugs including a description of their appearance which can be seen in photos or video clips. A tap of the insect in question may make it move slightly for a great effect as these bugs look as if they come alive for a brief moment, as well as sometimes having the chance to use a magnifying glass to look at the creature in question up close. Fun facts are included which add whimsy to these insect areas as this app takes its bugs quite seriously. I am glad that cute yet still factual info is also included such as “Why do grasshoppers hate spinach” to keep this app light and cute for kids to enjoy.

A multimedia area is also available to see all the included photos and videos of insects accessible from a single place - each impressive in their details as well as the colors that can be seen in each insect. The videos include a simple narrated description of what is being seen, while the text found in the photos offered from this section are not narrated so parents may need to assist children in this area.

The Quizquiz is an area that uses tests to determine what children have learned with insect photos in this fun and interactive mini-game consisting of both multiple choice as well as a true and false question mode. These written tests without narration makes these quizzes great for older children or those who might need help from a parent as well.

An observational journal allows children to take a photo or use one from the photos on their iPad to then write about a subject - presumably about insects. I enjoy this opportunity for older students which can be saved and looked at in the future.

I enjoy being able to explore this app in both daytime as well as nighttime settings found on the home page, allowing for the nighttime bug sounds to be heard as well - a nice touch - as is the other glossary of insects that one can use to search for these insects by order as well as color, also including insects not covered in this specific app but may be covered in the other apps from this series.

There is a tremendous amount of information about insects in this highly educational application. I recommend this app to all families who enjoy insect information. I look forward to more of the apps from this series as well as other apps from this developer in the future.

iPad Screenshots

(click to enlarge)

Meet the Insects: Village Edition screenshot 1 Meet the Insects: Village Edition screenshot 2 Meet the Insects: Village Edition screenshot 3 Meet the Insects: Village Edition screenshot 4 Meet the Insects: Village Edition screenshot 5
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