The Cat in the Hat Learning Library is one of the best resources to introduce inquisitive young minds to basic science concepts. Ice is Nice, from Oceanhouse Media is part of the collection and readers can join The Cat in the Hat, Thing 1 and Thing 2 as they tour the North and South Poles in the SS Ice Chopper.
In the course of the journey, learn about the geography of the Poles and the animals that inhabit them. Find out about glaciers and see icebergs splash into the sea. At the North Pole, interact with diagrams showing how the Earth orbits the sun and rotates on its own axis, creating day, night and the seasons. From a cross-section diagram, learn how a polar bear keep warm in sub-zero temperatures by absorbing the sun’s warmth through its hollow hairs. Discover which animals camouflage themselves, when and why caribou migrate and the effect that all of this has on the people who live there.
Then travel to the South Pole to learn about continental land mass, the habitat of 5 species of penguin and how they rear their young, move, fish and eat. Watch as they waddle across land and swim with consummate ease through icy waters. The app ends by making mention of climate change and the work of scientists to understand why this is happening.
Using customary rhyme, the app is crammed with fascinating detail. Complicated scientific concepts are introduced simply and in context with an in app glossary giving instant access to a definition of each concept via bolded words. The images and text are accompanied by the environmental sound of polar winds, animal calls and human activity and all the expected functions of a Seuss app are included.
This app is not just great fun. The range of concepts woven into one story is breathtaking and the enriched learning experience it contains makes it an essential resource for all curious learners.
Age range: 4 – 10
Educational value: geography; planetary rotation and orbit; seasons; temperature; animals; flora and fauna; adaptation; migration
Fun rating: 5/5
Educational rating: 5/5