Most educational money Apps in the iTunes store use the currency of the United States. Jungle coins is an App that allows Australian (and 15 other nationalities) to use their own currency in a variety of activities. There is a lot to love about this App, and hopefully this post will explain why Jungle Coins is permanently on my iPad.
Find – Coin Matching – children see a collection of coins and are asked to drag all the coins of one type to one side of the screen.
Count – add the values of the coins shown.
Compare – add two groups of coins and show if one value is equal too, greater than, or lesser than the other.
Correct Change – Children are presented with a problem where they need to show how much change they would receive from a simple transaction.
Learn – tap on a coin to hear its name and see both sides of the coin displayed. The value of the coin may be shown as a combination of other coins, for example 20 cents will be shown as two 10 cent coins.
The settings offer ways to adapt the App to best suit your child. Most of the settings are accessed through the Settings control on the screen.
Progress– Update: a recent update has added multiple user profiles to the App, which makes it very school-friendly and great for anyone with more than one child using the App. An outstanding feature is that, along with a general percentage of correct/incorrect answers, you can now view each child’s history. This report shows the activity, the correct answer, the answer the child gave and other information that can help teachers and parents identify areas of strength and areas that need attention. As far as I can tell, the history isn’t deleted until you reset or delete the child’s progress.
Levels – Level 1 begins with the two lowest value coins. Each level then adds a coin until level 5. Level 6 is a level that you can customise to include or exclude any coins you wish.
Currency – There ate 16 currencies within the App, with the option to buy others as an in-App purchase. The App’s description on the Jungle Coins home page has a full list of currencies, but just countries mentioned include Australia, New Zealand, The United States, Britain, France, and Switzerland. Only coins are featured in this App.
Language – Six languages are available however only three of these (English, French and Spanish) use narration.
Sound – Background, animal coin and voice sounds can be turned off.
Different animal characters can be selected from the main screen.
Localised Currency – Need I say more?
Realistic Graphics – good quality photographs of the coins are used. Children are able to see both sides of the coin and can sometimes rearrange them on the screen, which can be helpful when counting or adding. The realistic coin sound effect adds to the effect.
Different Levels – Parents and teachers can change the level of difficulty and even create a custom level to target specific coins.
Variety of activities – there are several activities available which will help children to learn different money skills such as identifying coins and adding their face values.
Spoken Directions – all directions are clearly spoken and can be repeated. This only applies to English, French and Spanish
While I have no major criticisms of Jungle Coins, there are a few features I’d like to see added.
Notes – there is a noticeable absence of paper (or, in Australia’s case, polymer) notes.
Combinations – the Learning section will show one coin as being equal to the sum of two others, but there is no activity that allows the child to show a coin or a set amount in different combinations of coin.
The best way to teach children about money is to let them use it in real life, however if you are lousy with the pocket-money like I am (and even if you are not), Jungle Coins is a great App to have in you Homework App collection as it will help to reinforce money concepts being taught in the lower primary school levels and may also be useful in special eduction settings.
Developer: Andrew Short