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Water Bears

Lower Age: 4+
Price: $2.99
Year Added: 2016

Water Bears is an app based game (App Store, Google Play) that teaches kids systems thinking and spatial reasoning as they guide colorful liquids through a three dimensional puzzle of pipes to fulfill characters’ needs. This application features 50 different puzzles with a variety of challenges. Each puzzle encourages children to learn in a three dimensional environment, allowing them to visualize how objects interact and interconnect in space. The ideas of constraints and limitations exist as players are often restricted to the amount of piping allowed in order to achieve the water bears’ requirements. Furthermore, there are many applications of math and science as players learn about systems management by using piping systems to distinguish between the mixing of colors and forcing the liquids to go to their desired location. Even the water bear characters are based off real-life microscopic organisms! All in all, this is a fun and exciting game that will generate learning as players maneuver through each level.


Engineering thinking and design practices the gift encourages children to do or learn about: Learn about the problem, plan the solution, redesign the solution, make improvements to the solution, apply mathematics, apply science

Engineering text or context explicitly provided: A problem, a client, criteria, constraints

Additional engineering thinking and design skills addressed: Systems thinking, spatial reasoning, critical thinking, creative thinking, design, problem solving


Overal ratings:

  • Children Reviews
    • Rating: 5.0 out of 5.0
    • Feedback:
      • “I really liked solving the puzzles. They were hard but fun!”
  • Parents Reviews
    • Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0
    • Feedback:
      • “This game kept my daughter engaged. She really had to think and enjoyed the levels where she had to create pipes that mixed different colors to get the correct colored water to the bears.”
  • Engineering & STEM Experts Reviews
    • Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0
    • Feedback:
      • “Excellent and entertaining game! Perfect for understanding a 3D environments and managing systems/resources.”