Tiny Robot Maker is an app that has so many levels of play and learning for preschoolers. Tiny Twiga Studios not only provides activities within the app, but have activities to extend play off-screen and into practical life experiences. Making choices and learning about shapes, color, and the structure of the human body are some of the foundations of preschool. These early constructs translate into body awareness and how we move and conduct ourselves. When playing with this app this week, I had a boy ask me …”Where is my leg?” when cued to put the robot’s leg on the robot’s body. It was a real eye opener and heart wrenching to realize that in making a robot, he could not generalize creating the structure of building a figure to himself – and that is why so many kids have difficulty sitting in circle or remaining in their seats. They can look around, but have no idea where they are or how to manage their bodies, and so they cannot fully participate in the activities of their daily lives. Let’s have a look here at this great app.
Building the robot…Screens for selection of body parts are presented in a step by step sequence from the body’s core out. Additional pieces are provided in a logical sequence as you choose your parts.
Using this app, has really helped me as a clinician to assess a kid’s body schema, awareness, and sense of symmetry. If something feels off, it means I definitely need to explore why it’s off the norm. Like the little boy who asked me where his leg was when playing with this app, let me know I was on the right track in his treatment sessions, and how to help his teachers and family make adaptations so that he could best function in the classroom and at home.
Perks and Added Bonuses… The illustrations are expertly done, and the sound effects are well…out of this world, which only increases its FUN Factor! All Robots are saved in the gallery and or in high resolution to your camera roll in full color or as a black and white coloring page. Included in these options is the opportunity to have a picture of your robot, make a blank card, a birthday card, or print up party invitations! There is a very nice overview in the parents section going over directions for the app, and a link to Tiny Twiga’s website which is secured under robotically timed visuals. The website contains pages of ideas and materials for the classroom and home.
- Promotes body awareness
- Fosters creativity
- Errorless construction which builds self-esteem
- Promotes Independent play
- Nice carryover activities and links for resources to be used at home and school
About the Author
Jo Booth has been an Occupational Therapist for over 30 years, and currently works in Pediatrics with early intervention. She sees kids newly diagnosed on the spectrum as well as medically fragile kids. She loves to move, explore and play everyday; so that “her kids” grow up to be healthy independent learners.