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Environmental - App scores top marks

What the lesson is about

A new mobile phone application called "Survival" aims to raise awareness among young people about the world's most endangered animals, writes Ellen Teesdale, 12. It was launched by Wildscreen, an international conservation and education charity supported by Sir David Attenborough.

You are given characters to unlock. To do this you need to gain expertise through the knowledge you already have or that you gain through playing. It is a fun experience for learning, because you have to respond to questions in different ways - say, tapping the phone or swiping the screen. A correct answer wins you more stars to unlock each character, helping it to stay alive longer.

I already know quite a few facts, but this game expanded my knowledge. Even if you don't know a great deal about the natural world, it starts with easier characters so you can progress.

What else?

On each level you can unlock a character profile and three pictures. The character profile tells you what the animal eats and where it lives; it also tells you whether it is a mammal, fish or bird. The levels are named after animals, such as "golden frog". All the characters come with stunning photographs.

There are a couple of downsides. Survival gives you a choice of only nine animals, so if you want to research another, it is a bit annoying. I would have liked more characters. But I really enjoyed this app. It is certainly fun. I would give it 10 out of 10.

Where to find it

Survival is brought to you by ARKive (www.arkive.orgappssurvival). ARKive shares its free teaching resources for 5- to 18-year-olds with TES. Find out more at www.arkive.orgeducationresources.

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