This week one of our resident Mums at Family Zone, Jess, has reviewed Elf on the Shelf and a few other super fun game apps for your kids to play during the Christmas break.
Want to stay ahead of what apps your kids are using? Subscribe to our FREE monthly cyber safety newsletter (see the link, top right on desktop or bottom of article on mobile).
It's Jess here,
So my household has finally joined the annual craze that is #elfontheshelf and I honestly feel like we are the last family on the planet to get involved! I think my 7yo was close to a complete meltdown after years of requesting it, so we caved and are joining the masses.
But is Elf on the Shelf really for the kids or is it for the adults? As I'm hard pressed to see who is having more fun. There is a huge subculture following for adults sharing fun photos of what their naughty elf gets up to when the kids are asleep - Sarah Michelle Gellar’s likes to 10 pin bowl with action figures!
If you have been living under a rock, Elf on the Shelf started as a book and a toy elf that gets up to mischief every night, only to be found by your kids every morning.
It's a brilliant idea to bribe children to behave in the lead up to Christmas, as the elf reports back to Santa on who has been naughty or nice. Although, this is quickly being outweighed by a month of rushing every night to think of something original for Scout Elf to do and 5am wake up calls by excited kids to find him every morning is getting old very quickly too.
Because everyone seems to be mad for all things Elf on the Shelf this Christmas, our expert team have reviewed their apps just in time for Christmas, along with a few other popular festive and fun apps for the kids and for you to play too.
There are 3 fun filled Elf on the Shelf apps; Find the Scout Elves, Elf Pets Pup and Elf Pets Reindeer. The objective of each game is to raise enough Christmas Spirit by completing tasks in order to help Santa deliver gifts to children around the world. This game is a fun challenge for younger kids.
PlayKids is an educational app for kids and toddlers. PlayKids streams hundreds of childrens TV shows along with educational games and puzzles. The app itself has great parental controls surrounding the TV shows children can view. Offline mode and In-app purchases are possible for extra content.
ElfYourself is a christmas themed app where you can upload photos of friends and family to make them dance as elves. The end result is an hilarious video of those uploaded dancing as elves. Be wary of In App purchases, which are required to add extra dances.
Heads Up! is a gaming app where a player has to guess the name or subject on a card based on clues provided by the participants. Categories range from celebrities, animals, movies, accents and more. Players aim to reach the highest score in a limited amount of time. The game is recorded on video and can be played back or uploaded to social media. They have recently added a holiday bundle, however like other extra decks, it costs money to play them. This game is perfect for play during Christmas Day with the family.
By Jessica Hill, Family Zone
Jess is a mum of two and recently came onboard at Family Zone after working as an Intelligence Analyst for WA Police for 9 years. During that time, she was placed in the cyber area of the Sex Crime Division where she dealt with families and victims of cyber-crime, and her passion for cyber safety developed. “I couldn’t believe the enormity of cases in sexting, grooming and paedophilia that I dealt with on a daily basis. One of the common themes I saw was parents overwhelmed and not knowing what to do. I really wanted to get involved in a prevention role where I could help families protect their children. Family Zone is this and more!”
Cyberbullying has bloomed like an out-of-control virus during the COVID-19 pandemic. But in this case, handwashing - or for that matter ...
We know these things can happen when kids go online. But not our kids. So let's just say "We heard about a child who ..."
It's not just how much screen-time we use. It's the way we use it.