Tech can be a parent’s best friend and worst enemy but with apps and mobile devices taking over the entertainment sector (think about YouTube or Netflix), it’s harder and harder for parents to find the right platform, where their kids will be intelligently entertained.
That’s where Hopster started, realising that kids spend an increasingly large amount of time on mobile devices, so why not combine learning with fun – so their edutainment app was born. Hopster started off in 2013 with the aim to make screentime a win/win for both kids and parents by featuring shows and games that are not just fun, but nurturing to children’s development. They believe in accidental learning and that kids are most inspired and eager to find out more when they stumble across something exciting by chance.
Realising the value of stories and how much kids can learn from their favourite characters, Hopster will be offering nurseries access to its library of shows, nursery rhymes and music. Take Wanda and the Alien, who are although very different, become good friends by accepting each other’s differences, or Timothy of Timothy Goes to School who is first weary of starting school but soon learns how to interact with his teachers and classmates.
Hopster Academy will be launching this year, giving nurseries and preschools free access to the platform so kids can enjoy their favourite shows in the classroom on interactive whiteboards, smart TVs or mobile devices. Hopster is currently piloting the service with four London nurseries and will be inviting teachers and caregivers to come and talk to them at the Childcare Expo at London Olympia on 3rd - 4th March (Stand C18) to find out more and join the programme.
Hopster’s programming combines family favourites, like Thomas & Friends and Pingu, educational shows, such as Phonics School and Monster Math Squad and creativity programmes, like Louie and Learn to Draw Minis. As well as these, Hopster has developed its own suite of educational games to help kids learn phonics, numbers, sharing and more, while they play. Everything that goes onto Hopster is carefully selected and evaluated to ensure it fits its special Discovery Learning Map that was developed with early childhood professionals based on the EYFS framework.
Naturally, parents can be concerned about their kids spending too much time on-screen, so Hopster encourages them to continue with the fun and learning off-line and offers them regular email updates on craft activities and books to try, that complement the in-app content. Its monthly parental report, Stickster’s Stats, tells parents about their little one’s most watched shows which is intended to start off a conversation between kid-and-parent and discuss what they discovered and learned on Hopster.