By the time your child is two to three years old, he or she should be able to start learning about shapes. There are lots of apps to teach shapes, but today I want to show you my new favorite: Shape Gurus.
It’s from developer Colto, and the latest in their Gurus series of apps. As the name makes clear, the app helps kids learn about shapes, namely circle, square, rectangle, and triangle. It also teaches them about colors.
Matching, Sorting, and Classifying Shapes
Like most apps nowadays, Shape Gurus encourage learning by playing. The idea is to offer 27 geometric puzzles that will get kids matching, sorting, and classifying by shapes and colors. What’s interesting is that the puzzles are like a series of vignettes, which come together to create an evolving story.
The beginning of the app is rather humble: a green circle must be dragged into a green outline, at which point it turns into a pulsating egg. After tapping the egg several times, it cracks open and a bird hatches.
The bird then takes off and finds its way up a tree branch. Here, several brown triangles must be dragged into the outlines to form a nest. A caterpillar, made out of green squares, peeks out of a hole in the tree trunk before quickly retreating back in, and the camera follows. Soon, you’ll find yourself solving puzzles in and out of tree trunks, under and over ground, and even in outer space.
As the story progresses, the puzzles also get harder. New combinations of shapes and colors are introduced to stimulate and challenge you. You’ll soon learn to join several shapes to create a bigger shape, classify shapes of the same kind but in different colors, and sort shapes by sizes. After you’ve completed the last task, the game loops and you’ll be taken back to the first screen.
Parents Need to Know
Made for ages 2-5, Shape Gurus has an easy-to-use, child-friendly interface. While it’s free of text, it does come with an audio guide that tells you the name and color of the shape you touch, for example, “green circle”, “brown triangle”, or “black square”. In addition to 4 basic shapes shapes, the app introduces 9 colors: red, blue, yellow, purple, orange, green, brown, black, and white.
Like all Colto apps, Shape Gurus is designed to be non-addictive, with an average playtime of 15 minutes. If you’d like to extend learning outside the app, you can download a free, at-home craft project on the developer’s website.
The app doesn’t have third-party advertising and in-app purchases, and doesn’t require an Internet connection. A parental gate separates the Parents & Privacy section from the game, preventing kids from following any external links.
Shape Gurus is available for iPad and iPhone from the App Store (requires iOS 7 onwards). It is playable in 12 languages: English (US + UK), Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Swedish, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, Japanese and South Korean.
Things I Like
All the apps in the Gurus series have been great, but Shape Gurus is especially impressive. It’s clear that a lot of thought went into creating the app, from the clever puzzles down to the soothing background music. If you look closely, you’ll see that almost everything in the app is made out of colorful shapes. It’s a lovely touch that shows kids how shapes can be found in their environment, too.
My favorite thing about the app is how the puzzles are connected together, not only forming a story but also illustrating progress. It’s telling how the journey begins with an egg and ends on the Moon; after playing through all the puzzles, hopefully your child has evolved from a rookie (egg) to an expert (Moon lander) in basic shapes and colors.
Shape Gurus teaches kids to match, sort, and classify shapes and colors. It offers a series of geometric puzzles that come together to tell a story, and get progressively difficult over time. Simple yet brimming with interactions, this beautiful app will delight and entertain ages 2-5.
App was provided for our honest review.
Founded by a Mum/Teacher, Colto is a creative studio developing apps for preschoolers that make them smile while they learn. Their games are designed based on the American Core Knowledge Preschool Sequence curriculum which include skills such as alphabet phonics, the meaning and pronunciation of new words and phrases, numbers and sequencing.
You should also check out their other apps we’ve reviewed:
ABC Gurus teaches toddlers about phonics and the alphabet through creative play. Learning happens incidentally as kids hear the sound a letter makes every time they color and decorate the letter with silly stickers. Kids also get to know what word can be associated with each letter. Suitable for ages 2-5.
Star Gurus is a fun little game for kids ages 3+ who love to play connect-the-dots game. Little do they know, they will learn how to count from 1 to 20 along the way. When they’re ready, you can even step it up to let them learn about odd and even numbers, and how to do simple skip counting.