Are mealtimes in your home sometimes a source of conflict rather than fun? If so, then Bo’s Dinnertime, from Heppi (pronounced ‘happy’) is an app for you. Bo, the colourful, cheerful giraffe, will help your child to learn about all the routines of a meal, from shopping through cooking and enjoying delicious food to washing up.
There are 10 scenes in the story, each exploring a step in the sequence of a complete meal. Help Bo to buy the groceries and pack them in the cupboard, recognising and matching shapes as you go. Next learn to sort ingredients as you cook, complete a jigsaw to fix the broken tablecloth, then lay the table and practise counting as you serve the food. Learn good manners with Bo as he eats with a knife and fork, encourages you to wipe your fingers on a napkin and apologises if he burps. Finally have fun cleaning a messy table, remembering to pop some bubbles as you wash the dirty dishes.
Navigation around the app is very simple with Bo providing prompts – but careful listening is needed in order to be really helpful. There are hidden sounds to activate on each page and Bo’s song ‘Hey, hello, my name is Bo’ to discover. Each page can be repeated as many times as you wish, with different colours, numbers and shapes to investigate each time. The app ends with Bo’s new song, ‘Would you like to eat with Bo today?’ as every imaginable type of favourite food passes before your eyes.
There is an additional game, accessed from the home screen. Choose either Lulu or Tommie, choose their meal from a wide range of foods, then listen to the satisfying munching as you help them to eat. Opt for a different meal every time you play the game.
Meal times will never be the same again as you count, match, sort, listen and co-ordinate. This is an outstanding app which not only supports a plethora of early learning skills whilst helping to develop an essential routine, but which also promises hours of fun for little munchers everywhere.
Age range: 2 – 6
Educational value: imaginative storytelling; sorting; shape recognition and matching; colours; sequencing; counting; co-ordination; listening skills; developing a meal time routine; good manners; learning to help with chores.
Fun rating: 4/5
Educational rating: 5/5