WeirdButTrue is a very fun and interesting National Geographic app that brings intriguing facts and an interactive design for both iPad and iPhone.
Very easy to use, the app is a random fact generator filled with interesting tidbits that kids and adults will enjoy. Each page has its own weird but true information, with bright colors and many vivid photos of related images used to illustrate what is being explained, and I also appreciate the creative use of fonts and design in general to fit the text onto the page in most interesting ways possible. These facts can be about animals, the human body, toys and other topics as the app has a plethora of information and it is great fun how varied sound effects are used per each page that in some way relate to the fact being presented.
Although this app is not narrated, I can’t imagine adults not enjoying these interesting facts on their own as they read these pages to their children. Nicely interactive, children will enjoy turning the page as a very satisfying flip sound is heard, as well have the ability for a variety of animals to singularly pop onto the screen saying “That’s Weird,” when a button is tapped from the menu bar to the right of the screen. One can also mark a fact as a favorite, and it is fun that the information is saved within this app with the tap of a heart icon, making the heart bounce around the screen like a ball in a pinball machine – a nice interactive touch. One can also email friends facts if one wishes, and there is a Weird-o-Meter included as well which allows readers to give feedback to National Geographic about how weird one thinks specific facts are. This information is then compiled in the “Top Weird-O-Meter Facts,” letting app users see what others think is the oddest information.
I really enjoy this app. I have always been a fan of this type of information, as I have very fond memories of shows like “In Search Of” and later “Ripley’s Believe it or Not” as a child, and I am happy that this app brings this strange but true information so conveniently to devices.
I also enjoy the facts that National Geographic has chosen to share here, as there is a very nice balance between weird and child-friendly. This app may be an acquired taste of sorts, but I have not found any facts that I think would be inappropriate or too scary for children, except for maybe the most timid of children who are obviously not a good fit for this application.
There are a lot of memorable facts used here, most of which adults will enjoy as much as children will, like how koalas and humans have similar fingerprints, how male ostriches can roar like lions, or that there are 29 different shades of red from Crayola. I enjoy how pithy the text is per page, allowing one to scroll a good number of these pages in a short amount of time – a great distraction for young and old alike. Younger kids will really enjoy having these fun facts read to them as well as interacting with this app.
I also think app would be especially nice for reluctant readers as well, because each of these sentences is short but packs a punch in terms of interest and oddness that will have kids turning each page eager to see what is next, as did I, feeling mildly addicted to this app and spending longer than necessary in reading these facts for review purposes.
It is also nice that one can easily Google for more information about any of these topics, oftentimes with the further details of these stories adding to the strangeness. An example is “Mike the Chicken,” who survived 18 months without a head, something I promptly googled to get the complete story. Used this way, this would be a great resource for teaching grade schoolers how to search online in order to research subjects of interest – a vital skill to learn for today’s students.
It is nice that a “Fact Finder” is included within this app, being a glossary of sorts for organizing the information offered here from A to Z, but I think it would also be nice if in the future, one could search by subject as well. This may make this app less random in general, but this may be a good thing for my son who is sometimes animal-obsessed and other times more interested in fun food facts.
I do hope that in the future this app can be updated. Currently, there are over 300 facts included, making this content-rich and a lot of fun, but I can see heavy users of this app desiring more content in the future. All-in-all, a great choice of educational app for kids of varied ages as well as adults.
Weird But True
Developer: National Geographic Society
Released: 2011-09-01 00:00:00
Description from the Developer* Winner of Spring 2012 Parents’ Choice Funstuff Award * New York Times App to Keep Kids Happy * Chosen as App of the Week, New & Noteworthy, What’s Hot, and Staff Favorite by Apple *
The best-selling Weird But True app is better than ever with more facts, more sounds, more surprises, and more fun! With a fresh new look and exciting new content, Weird But True has even more mind-benders than ever before—more than 600 kid-friendly facts!
Did you know a hippo's lips are about two feet wide? Or that didaskaleinophobia is the fear of going to school? Or that before toothpaste was invented some people cleaned their teeth with charcoal? Filled with wacky facts and tantalizing trivia that will engage curious kids and parents alike, Weird But True presents each of the 625 facts in a fun, colorful, and interactive format that will keep kids entertained—and learning—for hours! And parents can rest easy knowing that each fact is age-appropriate and handpicked by a brand they know and trust: National Geographic Kids.
- Download all 5 Fact Packs for hours of fun and entertainment.
- Swipe to move from fact to fact or shake the device to see a random fact.
- Use the Weird-O-Meter to rate the level of “weirdness” for each fact and monitor results from all users on the Weirdest Facts list!
- Bookmark your favorites or share the grossest facts with your friends via email, Facebook, and Twitter.
- Use the Fact Finder to locate facts about your favorite subjects—animals, weather, space, science, and more!
- Loaded with sound effects and awesome surprises, Weird But True is fun for kids of all ages!
Based on the phenomenally popular department in National Geographic Kids magazine and best-selling book franchise, Weird But True is available for iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad as a single purchase.