Problem Solving Skills Software -- The Big Picture
What do we mean by "problem solving skills" software? These are programs that focus on developing or exercising critical thinking skills by the user, rather than a specific academic discipline.
Disney's Dinosaur Activity Center [for ages 5 and up] from Disney Interactive, will appeal to fans of the movie, but may be a disappointment for those who are looking for a retelling or continuation of the Disney story. The activities themselves provide an updated introduction to some classic strategy games.
Puzz3D The Orient Express [for ages 10 and up] from Wrebbit, is an engagingly fun 3D jigsaw puzzle, combined with a mystery to be solved. Best for puzzle lovers, and those with patience.
Extreme Yoiks! [for ages 10 and up] from TERCworks, is a challenging program that builds and strengthens analytical and problem solving skills. While it offers fun for the whole family, it will especially appeal to maze and puzzle enthusiasts.
Toy Story 2 Activity Center [for ages 4 to 8] from Disney Interactive offers a collection of arcade-like activities that our testers at the older end of the age range found enjoyable.
Nickelodeon BrainBender [for ages 8 and up] from Mattel Media provides a smorgasbord of mind flexing amusement, in the form of puzzles, strategy challenges, and creativity opportunities. It works especially well for those who are short on time or attention span, but its lack of depth may discourage some users.