iWorld Geography Middle East Region the newest release by Ten Sun Interactive is an introduction to teaching the geography of the middle east countries. Also included are the countries capital cities and the continents that surround the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia. This app is a wonderful way to introduce this area of the world and to delve deeper into each of the specific areas.
From a geological perspective, this region is considered a subcontinent of Asia. Having children learn about this part of the world is obvious, every day in the NEWS we hear mention of these countries and the ongoing turmoil, we should all know where these countries are in relation to one another as well as other parts of the world. This area plays a critical geopolitical role in the Middle East and Arab world due to its vast reserves of oil and natural gas.
This app as with the other seven mapping apps by TenSun Interactive is simple, intuitive, and offers ample reinforcement via the differing modes. The first activity is an active introduction where you touch any country to hear its name. The following activity is a passive video tutorial which introduces each countries name and location. After the first-level introductions, the quiz verbally says the name of the country and it wants the player to tap on that specific country, there is a repeat button so that you may hear the name again. If the wrong country is picked the correct country will fade in with a color and the name of that country is verbally reinforced. The next section is a pure puzzle with matching the country to its proper position, this can be played either in edge mode, scatter, or with the removal of all lines. (I doubt many teachers/parents could do the puzzle when all the lines are removed!) I do wish that when a country was properly placed that a verbal reinforcement of the country name was supplied. The next activity gives the name of the country and a pin, by dragging the pin to the appropriate place on the map the label will appear. This became a favorite with the students we worked with, after several tutorials and practicing by tapping the correct country location. TWA suggests playing in pairs as an excellent way to strengthen the learning experience, kids help one another and the learning is amplified. Also, children often need a bit of competitive edge to be a motivator. The light bulb acts as the hint button and provides the name and location of the country required as well as all the names of all the other countries. Great support feature!
In addition, to all the variety, in the gameplay TenSun has provided a link to printables for further practice of mapping skills. Two Outline Maps and one sheet with all the names of the countries for labeling purposes. By enlarging and making a giant wall map, the labels can then be used with velcro to practice again and again to learn countries names and the correct location on the map! The app was inspired by the Montessori curriculum and contains a 3-part lesson to introduce, recall, and reconstruct the material. Label activities are added for additional practice and mastery.
• Challenge increases as activities progress
• Children control the app's navigation; never locked into or out of an activity (TWA loves this feature!)
• No penalty for a wrong answer (TWA loves this too!)
• Correct answers simply reinforced
• No distracting bells and whistles