News: Snoopy Snow Brawl Will Teach You How To Code

Sharing this press release with you:

The free game will be featured during Computer Science Education Week’s Hour of Code initiative from December 4 -10th 

PASADENA, Calif., Nov. 09, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — codeSpark Academy, the award-winning computer science education platform for kids ages 5 to 10, is teaming up with one of the world’s most beloved kids’ brands, Peanuts, to release today, Snoopy Snow Brawl, a free-to-play game that introduces little learners to fundamental computer science and coding concepts.

 Snoopy Snow Brawl ignites a passion for programming through a fun game with recognizable and lovable Peanuts characters. The multi-player coding game encourages young kids to use problem solving, strategy and algorithms in a snowball fight between Woodstock and his bird friends that Snoopy referees.

Kid coders can engage in silly battles with or against friends, or against the computer, in either one-on-one or two–on-two challenges.? Other features and functionality include:

●      A warm, engaging and familiar Peanuts experience

●      Interactive puzzles

●      Step-by-step tutorial

●      Word-free block based programming

●      Four different stages for learners at every level

●      Authentic Peanuts music and voices

●      A game that is a perfect match for the holiday season and the annual excitement around A Charlie Brown Christmas

“We are so honored to have been asked to create a new category of coding game with one of the world’s most-loved brands,” said Grant Hosford, Co-founder and CEO of codeSpark Academy. “The rich legacy of the Peanuts gang inspires our team and with Snoopy Snow Brawlwe believe we’ve created a learn-to-code game for youngsters that lives up to the brilliance of Charles M. Schulz and encourages a lifetime love of learning.”

The game focuses on the concept of sequencing and allows players to practice their coding skills in a variety of silly and fun ways. Research has shown that after just three sessions with codeSpark Academy, kids score 22% higher on sequencing tests.? Skill with sequencing has a direct and positive correlation with improved math and reading scores. 

Coding also requires kids to think critically and creatively when solving problems. Snoopy Snow Brawl increases access to quality STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) learning opportunities for K-5 students and is a featured activity in code.org’s Hour of Code initiative during Computer Science Education Week from December 4-10, 2017. Over 150 million kids in more than 180 countries have participated in Hour of Code since it was launched in 2013.

“codeSpark has demonstrated great care in bringing the Peanuts gang to a new audience of young coders while developing Snoopy Snow Brawl,” said Roz Nowicki, Executive Vice President of Peanuts Worldwide. “Being able to collaborate with them during Hour of Code is a great opportunity to share the joy of Peanuts, along with the critical tools of programming and STEM skills, with this younger generation.”

“Engaging kids during the Hour of Code can give them a sense of confidence and delight, breaking down stereotypes associated with Computer Science,” said Hadi Partovi, Founder and CEO of Code.org. “With Snoopy Snow Brawl, codeSpark has created a fun learning experience that has the potential to inspire a love of computer science.” 

Snoopy Snow Brawl is playable for everyone until January 15, 2018. ?Parents and public schools can download the codeSpark Academy app, which includes Snoopy Snow Brawl, for free. Teachers who complete the free registration will also receive a 20-hour curriculum and other supporting materials. To date, codeSpark Academy has been used by 20 million students worldwide in over 200 countries.

Snoopy Snow Brawl is available in the codeSpark Academy app on iOS, Android and on the Web at www.thefoos.com/hourofcode and you can check out the tutorial video here.

 

About codeSpark Academy:

Headquartered in Pasadena, codeSpark Academy is an award-winning computer science education platform for kids 5 to 10 years old. The app turns programming into play with a mix of curriculum based lessons, powerful creative tools and lovable characters called Foos. codeSpark Academy is the most used coding app for young kids and is played by millions in over 200 countries. Co-­founders Grant Hosford and Joe Shochet are dads and serial entrepreneurs who’ve built world-class mobile products for leading companies like Disney, Idealab, and eHarmony.

About Peanuts Worldwide:

The PEANUTS characters and related intellectual property are owned by Peanuts Worldwide, a subsidiary controlled by DHX Media and the family of Charles M. Schulz.

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appSIZED is ba-ack!

Apologies for the unexplained hiatus.

The founder, Editor-in-Chief and Girl Friday of this solo-driven app reviews site got married in November in Buenos Aires and has been busy ever since.

Rest assured that the gamer in her is still alive and kicking, and in fact, a mini version is also on the way.

As always, the format and way of presenting app reviews is a constant challenge to this solo reviewer but I hope to share with you the apps and games I’m into these days.

Also, the unique new offering of Apple, Test Flight, has enabled me to check out beta versions of games in development. Feel free to include this reviewer in your pool of testers!

Thanks for your patience and I look forward to more appventures with you!

Have a great week ahead!

Enuh

Review: Hanx Writer for iPad

 

 

Hanx Writer for iPad may seem like a quaint idea to most, but for those e who grew up with a manual typewriter long before Microsoft Word became a household name, Hanx Writer brings back memories and then some. The app, incidentally, was commissioned and endorsed by no less than award-winning actor Tom Hanks who is a typewriter fanatic.

 

Back then, typing was a challenging and frustrating experience. You needed to be extra careful when typing things – how soft or how hard you bang the keys means the difference between a smooth looking typewritten page and a page with out of place keys or smudged letters.

I can go on all day about the perils and terrors of typewriter ribbons gone threadbare and paper incorrectly inserted, but I'm not here to wax poetic about a bygone era, I'm here to talk about how Hanx Writer fares as a throwback app and as a notetaking/mini word processor.

The fun part about having a 'pretend' typewriter like Hanx Writer is that you get to enjoy the perks of typing manually without the corresponding headaches. The fun part of typing then was hearing the clickety clack of keys and watching words being hammered out on the page with a couple of quick strokes – the less than fun part was dealing with jammed keys, smudged letters and uneven typing. Nowadays, typing with a keyboard is a muted experience while a touchscreen computer is almost silent.

For a free app, you get to enjoy the experience of typing on a 'pretend' typewriter, complete with the clicking sound of the individual keys as you type and the ringing sound when you've reached the end of the line and have to move to the next. For the full-blown typing experience, you can even turn off the 'modern' way of correcting mistakes (read: backspace). However, it would also be nice to see keys a bit out of place just like what I was used to when I typed too hard. For select upgrades, you can try out new typewriter themes or styles or just get the entire pack for $5, which includes more ribbon colors, justify alignment, a title page with the option to put a picture, etc.

Hanx Writer makes typing on the touchscreen keyboard fun, but I've tried pairing the app with my trusty bluetooth keyboard and the experience has been seamless.

My only gripe with the app is that sharing options are limited. For now, you can only “share” or export your work in PDF, which you can of course open in other apps such as Goodreader and other PDF readers. It would be nice, however, to have other file saving options such as .txt or .rtf formats.

For a free app that you can straightaway enjoy without shelling out real money for in app purchases (IAP), Hanx Writer is a fun and engaging typing experience that is more than just a trip down memory lane. I can envision it to be my default writing app just to get those creative juices flowing. Check out the report below:

appSIZED rating: 5 out of 5

App: Hanx Writer for iPad

Link: Hanx Writer for iPad

Compatibility: iPad only

Price: FREE

Ver.: 1.0

Developer/Publisher: HitCents, Inc.

 

 

App Review: Goodreader 4 for iPhone and iPad

If there is one app out there that is the best toolbox that you'll find for your iPad/iPhone, then Goodreader for iPad (Goodreader, for short) would be it. As a long time user (since 2010), I have come to rely on Goodreader for the tasks needed for my iPad that are usually only possible using a computer.

Goodreader 4 is said to be an even better version of an already great app. It's currently available as a standalone app or as in-app purchase from one's existing Goodreader app.

Need a toolbox of an app for your needs? Read on to find out!

 

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Now Playing: Man At Arms TD for iPad

 

man at arms TD It has taken me a month before sitting down to write this review largely because I’ve been doing nothing with my free time except play Man At Arms TD for iPad ($4.99). After many hours logged in making maps, playing online, replaying levels and combining cards, I have finally finished the lengthy campaign mode and am left wanting even more!

IMG_5766

At first glance, Man At Arms TD is not as slickly designed as its tower defense (TD) counterparts. In a genre where games are getting more attractive by the day, Man At Arms TD is rather plainly designed with some awkwardness in the animation. Gameplay wise,  Man At Arms TD does not reinvent the wheel with its gameplay.

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Now Playing: Doctor Life for iPhone and iPad

I once dreamt of becoming a doctor when I was a kid. The dream quickly dissipated when I realized I couldn’t bring myself to dissect a live frog when I was in high school. Now, the closest I get to playing doctor is by playing iPad/iPhone games revolving around a hospital theme.

Doctor Life ($2.99/Universal for iPhone and iPad) by WIGU Games came out recently, the kind of hospital-themed time management/sim game that will make you feel like a doctor. Having played a fair number of hospital/medical themed games in the past, such as Hospital Havoc 2, Are You Alright, the Amateur Surgeon series, Hollywood Hospital, Doctor Life is the first of its kind to actually focus on real medical conditions and treatments.

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Now Playing: Bug Heroes 2 for iPhone and iPad

Did you play the original Bug Heroes game? I did. Years later, Bug Heroes 2 ($0.99/Universal) is Foursaken media's latest addition to their lineup, following Bug Heroes Quest.

I must admit that while I played the first game extensively, the unlockable characters via in-app purchase threw me off. It didn't help that I sucked at the game and it seemed that no matter how hard I tried, I just didn't have powerful enough characters to use.

As for Bug Heroes 2, there are significant improvements and more problems compared to the original. It's still the same game as the original – you control an arsenal of fighting bugs (spiders, ants, etc.) and use them to fend of waves of aggressive enemies who are out to steal your food stash (a.k.a. your base). This time, however, you have two (2) heroes to control. These heroes are obtained randomly (slot machine style), and more heroes require a certain number of stars to unlock further.

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Now Playing: Hidden City – Mystery of Shadows for iPad

I haven’t got much patience for hidden object games (HOGs) of late, but I do appreciate most of them for the gorgeous design and interesting storylines. Hidden CIty: Mystery of Shadows (Free) by G5 Games is their latest title to hit the App Store. While there are plenty of HOGs out there, not many have explored the free to play model. In the past, HOGs were far more expensive than your usual games, owing to the depth and richness of the content. It also takes a lot of time and patience to finish one, hence a single HOG could last you for months, depending on how busy you are and how many games you play on average.

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Five iOS Games to Get Excited About in 2014

Before January ends, let me share with you an awesome guest post by fellow blogger Jennifer Birch. She sent me an email awhile back with her own take on games she’s excited about this 2014. Thank you, Jenni! Enjoy!

The year 2014 might be in favour of those born with under the horse sign according to feng shui experts, but we can all agree that Apple users are the luckiest ones. Exciting new games are debuting on the iOS platform this year. As early as in the first quarter, new titles are already raring for their release. Below are some of the most highly anticipated and most-awaited games for iPad and iPhone enthusiasts.
frontline+commando

Frontline Commando 2

Coming from Glue (who also made the app store hits such as Zombies Ate My Friends and Eternity Warriors II), it won’t be surprising if this turns out to be an equally brilliant ‘freemium’ action game. While some absolutely abhor this type of business model, others are actually sensible such as the case of Frontline Commando. The original boasts of clean-cut animations and good-enough targeting mechanism, but it is not your run-of-the-mill indie game for the iPhone. It feels deep and immersive with the constant content updates, unlike others that lie rotting as an icon on your gadget until they inevitably turn into a massive byte-waster.

From the previews of the game and the first look of our Kiwi friends (New Zealand got the game last December), it seems like it will be a massive hit.

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Now Playing: Bardbarian for iPad and iPhone

appsized bardbarian review

conga line … charge!

In any fantasy adventure, the bard usually plays a supporting role, providing inspiration and support to the rest of the party with his songs about war and heroism.

In my current game of choice, and one I highly recommendBardbarian for iPhone and iPad (by Bulky Pix and Tree Fortress), it’s Brad the Bard who takes centerstage in fighting off nasty baddies invading his village. However, Brad can’t directly attack them, but his battle axe turned magical musical instrument generates notes which lets him summon allies who do the fighting for him. What Brad can do is to activate special powers to boost his units, such as increased damage, speed or protection.

appsized bardbarian

channel your inner slash

It’s not easy to classify Bardbarian as one type of game but not another – the best way to put it is that it’s a crazy mishmash of different genres such as castle defense and a bit of RPG – crazy in a good way, of course.

If you still know the likes of Slash (Guns N Roses) and Kirk Hammet (Metallica), you’ll know that this Bard plays a mean guitar solo. So on top of a crazy, frantic game you get a pretty awesome soundtrack.

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