Thinking Things 3
Thinking Things 3 (ages 7-13) is another Edmark title that demonstrates the company’s skill with exploration-type programs. Although the CD-ROM is not flawless, it does offer a truly interactive experience that lets kids wander where they may and learn something at every turn. Five main sections cover visualization and memory, basic computer programming, elementary physics, deduction, and information analysis. Learn about gravity by building a virtual raceway, or use a stock trader to explore analysis and projection. Play with patterns on a digital football field, or hone your logic skills by matching Fripples to their correct rooms using clues like “I sit next to a striped Fripple” and “All the Fripples on the top floor have straight hair.” Shortcomings include a skimpy online help section, an over-ambitious age range (8-12 would be better), and the occasional nasty narrator, like the woman during the Fripple section who chides nastily, “Try again.” Her tone is reminiscent of Kate Winslet in Sense and Sensibility correcting Hugh Grant’s poetry reading. Caveats aside, Thinking Things 3 is a good disc that encourages self-determination, provides fun, and manages to address some sophisticated skills at the same time.
– August 1996