Review by Amanda Bindel, Common Sense Education | Updated November 2012
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Musical Me - by Duck Duck Moose

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Lively activities introduce kids to music, rhythm, and instruments

Subjects & skills
  • Arts

  • Creativity
  • Critical Thinking
Grades This grade range is based on learning appropriateness and doesn't take into account privacy. It's determined by Common Sense Education, not the product's publisher.
Common Sense says (See details)
Teachers say (2 Reviews)

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Pros: The mini-games are quick and engaging, just right for preschoolers.

Cons: Only two of the five activities have difficulty levels to offer depth.

Bottom Line: This whimsical app offers kids a variety of ways to make and experience music while boosting their critical-thinking skills.

Teachers can use Musical Me at an iPad station or on one-on-one iPads as a light-hearted way to introduce music to their classroom. They can follow up the digital experience with real experiences using various percussion instruments. It might also be fun to set up a classroom dance, similar to one of the activities in the app, and challenge kids to mimic the moves of the dancing animals.

The app showcases 14 different songs and allows you to select different instrumental options, including a violin, piano, or electric guitar. Teachers could follow up this digital play with introducing the same song played by different instruments to see if kids can recognize the instrument that's playing.

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In Musical Me - By Duck Duck Moose, kids make and explore music. A mouse leads them through scenes with different musical activities. Kids can make monsters dance by tapping and dragging them to the beat. They can practice rhythm by tapping flying birds in a rhythm to play the notes of a popular tune. Also fun is copying patterns, hearing different do-re-mi notes, and playing on different instruments, including a drum, cymbals, maracas, and a duck. Kids can even compose their own music by moving around notes on a staff.

As kids explore the five activities found in Musical Me, they learn some of the basics of music, including rhythm, pitch, notes, and instruments, as they play along to familiar tunes like "Mary Had a Little Lamb," "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star," and "Pop Goes the Weasel."

Musical activities like the ones found in Musical Me engage many parts of the brain, and by playing with rhythm, memory, and notes, kids develop critical-thinking skills and sharpen memorization skills. The visuals in Musical Me - by Duck Duck Moose are lively and colorful, and the simple, easy interface allows preschoolers and kindergartners to have fun without frustration. The mini-games here are a nice mix of virtual toys (like one where you play percussion instruments along with a song), creative workshop (like the customizable tune-building musical staff), and educational games (like the Simon Says-style memory challenge).

Kids build confidence working with the touch screen through play, and they'll work on some pre-reading skills like listening, matching and hearing the rhythm, repetition, and rhyming. The music education component is pretty simple -- kids will see notes on a staff and explore different musical instruments. Much of the educational content offered is available in other preschool apps that may appeal more to older preschoolers and kindergarten students, while the music and characters of Musical Me - by Duck Duck Moose may appeal more to toddlers and preschoolers.

Overall Rating

Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return?

The games are visually appealing and short, so kids won't get bored.

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

Two of the three activities offer three levels of difficulty. The playful games are meant to expose kids to music, rhythm, and matching in short bursts.

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

The activities are intuitive and don't keep data.

Common Sense Reviewer
Amanda Bindel Classroom teacher

Teacher Reviews

(See all 2 reviews) (2 reviews) Write a review
Featured review by
Emily S. , Technology coordinator
Technology coordinator
Holly Hills Elementary School
Denver, United States
Preschoolers practice rhythm and critical thinking through music
This is an engaging and educational app for preschoolers. It not only teaches musical theory, but it teaches language concepts such as rhythm, pattern, and rhyme, which are building blocks for reading. Although this is a worth-while app for preschoolers, it is meant to be used individually and independently, and not necessarily for use in a classroom.
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