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GeoBee Challenge

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GeoBee Challenge by National Geographic is one of our favourite geography apps. It is not an app for beginners and even though the app is aimed at kids age 9 to 13 some of the tests could be really challenging even for the geography enthusiasts. Kids can use it as an assessment tool used to test their knowledge of world geography and to identify locations on a world map. The only critique is that during our review the app stopped unexpectedly twice and needs an update that will remove discontinued features like Open Feint. The app may inspire children to compete in the real life competition and receives a 4 star EAS Certification.

Teacher Review

Each year thousands of schools in the United States participate in the National Geographic Bee using materials prepared by the National Geographic Society. The contest is designed to encourage teachers to include geography in their classrooms, spark student interest in the subject, and increase public awareness about geography. The app has a library of more than 1,300 past National Geographic Bee questions and 1000+ locations. And you also get the classic National Geographic Society song when you open the app.
 
GeoBee Challenge app is taking users on a journey to explore the world while testing their geographic knowledge. We don’t think it will be appropriate for beginners as they will find questions and map rounds too difficult if they are just interested in geography facts. The app has an intuitive interface that is easy to use and we think it’s a good idea to go through the instructions on how to play before using the app mainly because the scoring system is rather complex.
 
Game play is organized into rounds of three different types of challenges, each one involving 5 locations that need to be identified correctly. The three rounds are:
 
Multiple-choice challenge – you have to tap on the right answer
Map challenge – you need to identify a location by zooming, pinching and tapping your way to mark your answer on an interactive map
Bonus Rounds – you are given a photo from the National Geographic photographs and you have to locate what’s in the photo – as an added challenge you are not told what the photo represents or where it was taken to make it more difficult
 
To complete the game and become a GeoBee champion you have to get through all 15 rounds (75 challenges in total). There is a 44 seconds time limit to answer the questions so you need to be quick because the faster you answer the better your score will be. While playing the game we discovered that you can re-answer a question by tapping again on it, at which point the timer freezes and you can keep continuing until you get the right answer. This is a glitch in the app that can be easily fixed, but easily allowed us to cheat the app. 
 
Another surprise was how accurate you need to be in the map challenge. To get the maximum score you need to tap on the exact location of the area in question – getting nearer will still get you some points because partial accuracy points are received for reasonably close answers. It was daunting to start with and we soon realised pointing cities on the map was more difficult than we anticipated. After playing a few times our game improved considerably because we took our time to zoom in on the country in question and then focus on the marked locations within it.  Some of the questions are duplicated but they occurred just four times in half an hour, which is not too bad.
 
We have to say that the majority of questions in the multiple choice challenge are focused around the USA geography, but all the other quizzes cover the rest of the world. We ended up challenging ourselves on who gets the best score and kept checking our top scores under the Community tab from the main screen. That’s when we noticed the Open Feint icon that unsurprisingly was inactive –the social platform for games was discontinued last year. The app is well priced at £1.49 and if your kid is already interested in geography this is one of the geography apps that will continue challenging him. Despite all the minor glitches we enjoyed the playing with the app and scored it with a 4 stars EAS Certification. Take the GeoBee Challenge!
 
 

Screenshots

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From the Developer

Now with beautiful maps from National Geographic, explore the world while testing your smarts.

This is a challenging game, so it's not for beginners...but do keep in mind that the National Geographic Bee is meant for kids in grades 4-8. Are you smarter than a 4th grader?

Three types of game play make sure you really know your stuff and never get bored.

In the multiple-choice round, answers come from a library of more than 1000 National Geographic Bee questions. In the map challenge round, you zoom, pinch and tap your way to find spots on an interactive map from a catalog of 1000+ locations. For an added challenge, bonus rounds include compelling National Geographic photographs where you have to locate what's in the photo on the interactive map...only we don't tell you where the photo was taken or what is in the picture!

The faster you answer, the more points you get! You have to keep up the pace to move on to the next round.

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