Review: Heart Street Market App

Let’s be honest, technology is pretty much inescapable when it comes to our kids. But with many games lacking educational substance or showing things not suitable for younger children, it’s imperative that parents keep watch over their children’s devices. I always select games for my daughter that help her grow as a learner, so when I was contacted by the Heart For Heart Girls company to review their mobile game, Heart Street Market, I was more than happy to play this game with my daughter and get her feedback.

 

Game Concept:

The Heart Street Market mobile game explores the lives of  Rahel, Nahji, Consuelo, and Dell.  Each girl takes you on an adventure to explore their countries and play mini games helping them collect supplies to build their unique neighborhood.

 

Heart Street Market features the H4H doll characters who represent their respective geographical regions on a globe. Within each region exists various mini games which exercises various learning skills such as pattern recognition/creation and basic math. However, I would suggest if your child is around four years old or younger that a parent or someone older play along with them as some of the games may be a little difficult. For example, my daughter (who just turned four a month ago)  became a little frustrated with a snake-like game in Nahja’s town because it was a bit hard for her to control. Once I played along with her a few times she slowly began to understand how to play better.   

 

Many of the mini games feature similar controls and functionalities but may have different gameplay mechanics and are themed for their specific countries. One example is the matching gameplay of Rahel’s raindrop game (my daughter’s FAVORITE game) and Consuelo’s bakery game. Even though they both require the player to match items on a board, Rahel’s game uses the matched raindrops to fill jars of a specific color while Consuelo’s bakery game matches pastries with a Mexican theme.

 

Outside of the games there is also a marketplace where players go to purchase mission items using the in-game currency earned from the mini games. These mission items are then used to help build the neighborhoods of each H4H girl’s geographical region. One aspect of the marketplace that was a bit confusing was the navigation. The marketplace has numerous stands where players go to purchase items, however these stands aren’t really labeled so it becomes kind of a guessing game as to which stand held what items. After playing for a while it becomes a little easier to find certain items in the marketplace but it does take some time to almost memorize these locations.

Overall my daughter really enjoys the app and as a parent I feel this is a great game for children that can help with various learning skills while also discussing culture. To download the game a one-time purchase of $3.99 is required, but keep in mind the app does not require any other in-game microtransactions to play once it has been purchased. So if you’re looking for a mobile game with a little more substance than something like Candy Crush for your kiddo, I’d highly suggest giving Heart Street Market a try.   

Untitled design-2

You can purchase the app here:

Android 

Apple

signature_rv4yr8j1b6bepfmmeq

Advertisements

Book Review: My Hair is Poofy & That’s Okay

If you have followed my blog for any time now, you may have noticed that I make it a priority to encourage my daughter to love and accept who she is and what she looks like. Many young females, especially girls of color, grow up with such a negative view of themselves that it leaks over into adulthood, creating completely avoidable self-esteem and self-worth issues. So, anytime I am offered a chance to review a children’s book such as My Hair Is Poofy & That’s Okay by Nikkolas Smith, I jump at the opportunity to continue exposing my child to positive literature. With its beautiful and unique illustrations, relatable storyline, and overarching message of embracing your self-image, this book will be a mainstay in my daughter’s library for a long time.

 

Kids are very smart; they notice how you dress, speak, or what books you’re reading. Ever since I was blessed enough to become a mother, the phrase “Representation matters” has become so much more meaningful to me. Young minds need to be exposed to literature and characters they can relate to, and Poofy is definitely one of those characters. She has a big personality, self-confidence, and a massive crown of thick curly hair which my daughter loved. The illustrations are amazing with vivid colors and brush strokes, great detail in every character’s features, and a lightness that makes you want to keep turning the page to see how great the next one will be.

Screen Shot 2017-12-28 at 5.41.52 PM.png

 

The importance of being unique is displayed throughout the book, but I love the fact that the story also highlights the idea of not letting others negatively label you because of your uniqueness. Although the story does jump around a little bit pertaining to the scenarios, there is always a positive and uplifting message being echoed by each of the characters. I am a mom to a brown skin girl with a head of thick curly hair and because of authors like Smith she is able to read stories and see images that look like her. It fills me with joy any time I am able to expose my little princess to a character like Poofy and hear her say “She looks like me!”

 

Over this past year I have purchased and had opportunities to review many children’s books for my daughter, but My Hair Is Poofy & That’s Okay definitely stands out as one of our favorites. If you are interested in purchasing a copy take a visit to author Nikkolas Smith’s website (https://www.nikkolas.art/shop/poofy) where he also has artwork, stickers, and other literature. If there are any other positive self-image children’s books you would like to suggest or share, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll see you all next time!      

signature_n536upujne2s5msblp