LazyTown Ziggy’s Plate

Educational Value:
Fun Factor:
Skills:Nutrition, Healthy Eating

What we like best:

Game play encourages kids to think twice about what sort of food to put in Ziggy’s—and ultimately, their own—bellies come mealtime.

What you should know:

The concept’s solid, but there are too many missed opportunities for learning—including explanations about why certain foods are healthy, and basic skills such as counting or colors that could easily have been added in.
Full Review:

Chicken nuggets and pizza only—sound familiar? Picky eating is a huge childhood issue; help expand your budding epicure’s taste for healthy grub with this app, modeled after the LazyTown TV show that encourages kids to get outside, exercise and be healthy.

As Ziggy, the title character, parachutes into town, kids must steer him away from junk food options like fries and candy, in favor of more nutritional alternatives like salad and fruit. Nutritious choices fill up the food meter, while the unhealthy options take points away. The aim of the game is to fill up the meter before Ziggy lands. There’s not much deviation from this basic premise, and although the levels increase in difficulty with more food choices and faster game play, there isn’t much to encourage even the most hardcore LazyTown fan to keep coming back for more.

Little eaters can earn stickers and trophies for their successes, but neither act to incentivize more play. With some educational expansion, this app could be so much more than an interactive game trying to foster healthy eating habits, but unfortunately the current version doesn’t quite meet the mark.

Reviewed 2012-10-11 on iPad iOS6 by Tia Benjamin

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