Learning Social Skills Through Live, Interactive Guided Play with Captain McFinn

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This post is part of a sponsored campaign for Captain McFinn’s Swim & Play App. I received compensation for my participation, but my review and opinions are my own.

I love helping my boys learn new skills, but  especially love when I get to see them grasp new concepts outside of strictly education.  For instance, Reese is currently learning life and social skills in his preschool class, like manners, hand washing, and preparing simple snacks.  I love seeing him grow as a person, especially when that growth tends to lead into new friendships and relationships for him. It’s so fun to hear him talk about his new friends and classmates at school and how they have fun together.  But sometimes, I’m definitely reminded that those skills are a work in progress for him as he learns small bits and pieces at a time.  The same goes for the other two boys, but both at their own level.

For Aiden, I see him blooming into this very social and emotional creature as he’s really settling into his kindergarten year.  Along with learning those skills, he’s also learned some responsibility skills as he’s become more independent being gone at school all day.  Plus, each kindergartener has their very own iPad that they bring to and from school each day and use to assist them in further learning at home.  We love how his school uses them, and I love seeing him learn skills that will go a long way in today’s technologically savvy world.  That’s why I was so interested in reviewing a new app that combines all of these things into one- Captain McFinn’s Swim & Play.

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The goal of the Swim & Play app is to help preschoolers (children ages 3-5) learn social and emotional skills that they need to get along with others and be successful in school and life – such as sharing and politeness, playing as a group, being thankful and respecting others.  A new version of the app has recently been rolled out, which not only has a single price of $2.99 (it was previously available by subscription only), but also features three alternating worlds – Sand Dusty Reef, the home of Captain McFinn, Riff Raff Reef, focusing on preventing bullying behaviors, and The Unsmashable Cross Section, a sunken ship that focuses on using proper manners in everyday life.  The children can freely play throughout the underwater worlds by activating over 250 interactive hot spots, as well as multiple games, videos, and activities.  Through playing and exploring, children also earn badges for completing activities.

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But the very best of part of what makes Captain McFinn’s Swim & Play app so appealing and different is that it features LIVE interactive game play.  Real, live people, known as Explorers, respond in real time to how a child engages with Captain McFinn’s interactive undersea world. These Explorers encourage a child while he or she is enjoying fun games and learning activities– even addressing individual gameplay and learning via the child’s animated avatar name. The kids can see the Explorers, (which I’ll admit- both intrigued and worried me a little), but the Explorers can’t see them.  Watch this video of Aiden below where he is listening to one of the Explorers encourage him after a game and refer to him by name.  He LOVES it!

Since I really wanted to focus on why Aiden loves Captain McFinn (and obviously I do too, as I’ve already told everyone I know about how cool of an app it is!), I decided to do a short Q&A session with him!

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Q: What do you like the most about Captain McFinn’s Swim & Play?
A: I like Captain McFinn. He’s funny!  And I like my little fish that I got to name and pick out.  And the game is really fun to play.

Q: What’s your favorite thing to do while playing?
A: Go around and make all of the things move and talk [hot spots]. And I like where you can dress up the people and make different outfits.

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Q: What do you think of the Explorers talking to you and calling you by name?
A: It’s cool! I like to hear them talk just to me.  And sometimes other people.  My other apps don’t know my name though, just this one.

Q: What kind of things do the Explorers talk about to you?
A: Seeing all of the people playing together. And one time about how to be a good friend and make more friends.  And they tell us about new games to play.

Obviously, Captain McFinn is a big hit with him!

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Captain McFinn’s Swim & Play app is also featured in the nabi Elev-8, Fuhu’s most advanced and powerful kid-focused tablet to date, which launched in October. Fuhu, Inc., is the creator of the award-winning nabi® tablet and the foremost innovator in high technology solutions for families. Captain McFinn joins a select group of other premier children’s entertainment brands innabi Elev-8’s content lineup.

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You can follow Captain McFinn on multiple social media channels:
-The Captain McFinn website
-Facebook
-Twitter
-Pinterest
-YouTube
-Instagram

Also, check them out and Google Play and the App Store to download the brand new version today!

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