Common Sense Review
Updated November 2012

Geared 2!

Send a hamster flying off his wheel by choosing the right gears
Common Sense Rating 3
  • The levels start out easy with a few gears and easy placement.
  • As the levels advance, the challenges increase.
  • Obstacles are added, such as gears that should be avoided.
  • The complexity increases with different gears that move different ways.
Pros
Geared 2! is easy to start playing but keeps increasing the challenge.
Cons
Without hints or help, kids may eventually get stuck at a challenging level.
Bottom Line
Students will need to use logic and trial-and-error skills to learn how gears work.
Amanda Bindel
Common Sense Reviewer
Classroom teacher
Common Sense Rating 3
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 4

This well-developed physics puzzler is fun and challenging. Kids will get a kick out of learning how gear quantity and size impact speed as they see the hamster flung from his wheel.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer? 3

Geared 2! slowly ramps up the difficulty level but kids will find endless challenge in the 60 official levels and the create-your-own level editor.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students? 2

Without hints or help, kids may get stuck at a challenging level. They can see their scores and performance data at each level and in the statistics category.

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How Can Teachers Use It?

Teachers could incorporate Geared 2! into a unit on simple machines that already has students working hands-on with gears and other simple machines.

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What's It Like?

This engaging puzzler teaches physics and simple machines. Students must position gears so the teeth meet and the gears rotate. As students try to guide a gear into position, its color changes to let them know whether it can be placed or not. If so, kids see -- somewhat graphically -- how gears can increase the speed of the source. For example, a hamster wheel rotates so much faster once the gears are in place that the hamster flies right off! Other details are amusing; the hamster makes a fun "yawn" sound effect when he’s bored because the gears aren’t moving fast enough, and he squeals when he’s flung.

Once he flies off, students see a report showing how long it took them to solve the level, how many moves they made, the distance they dragged the gears, the difficulty level, and how many levels they’ve completed.

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Is It Good For Learning?

The silly fun and challenging physics of Geared 2! will encourage kids to use logic and strategy to solve each puzzle. As the challenges build and students need to add obstacles, they'll use critical thinking and trial-and-error tests. Each level gets a bit more difficult, and the 60 levels will keep them challenged for quite a while. They can also create their own puzzles using the level editor or play puzzles created by other players.

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