FOCUS On the Go!
By Peter Kung
Open iTunes to buy and download apps.
Buddy Bear has a lot on his mind, and he needs your family’s help to talk about his feelings. Play alongside Buddy to practice understanding and sharing your feelings and to collect tools for calming down in challenging situations.
FOCUS On the Go! includes a suite of games and resources for everyone in your family. You can have fun together with Buddy Bear while learning ways to help strengthen your families.
Buddy is frustrated because his ball got stuck in a tree. Help him by moving branches on the screen to guide the ball back into your Cozy Cavern. You can collect yummy cherries along the way too! After each level, you can help decorate the Cozy Cavern with all the tools you’ve collected. These things help Buddy feel better when he’s stressed out. Now he has his ball back and really feels at home!
Do you have a story you want to share with your family and friends?
Make a comic strip to say exactly what’s on your mind. Choose bear graphics and speech bubbles to make your story come to life. You can even customize your own speech bubble to say exactly what's on your mind. Then share your comic with family and friends through email or Facebook.
Buddy is looking for new words to use when talking about his feelings. In this feelings word search, swipe your finger across the letters to make feeling words. Words are hidden backwards, forwards, diagonally and bent around corners. Once you find a feeling word, drag it to its corresponding color zones on your Feeling Thermometer. Green feelings are the ones that feel really comfortable, while red feelings are the ones that feel really uncomfortable.
Buddy needs your help to relax! Move Buddy back and forth across the bottom of the screen to catch bubbles with tools to help Buddy cool down. The more tools you collect, the closer Buddy gets to his green zone on the Feeling Thermometer. But look out for the chili peppers! They make Buddy's temperature rise closer towards the red zone. Your goal is to keep Buddy feeling comfortable in the green zone.
Parents can learn and play along with your kids. You can watch them while they find feeling words or create a comic. Within the Parent’s section, you can watch videos, download activities you can do as a family, and take surveys to learn more about your family’s strengths.
FOCUS On the Go! supports the FOCUS (Families OverComing Under Stress™) family resilience training model.
To learn more about ways to build a stronger family using FOCUS On the Go!, visit http://nfrc.ucla.edu/focus-on-the-go.
FOCUS On the Go! turned out to be a great app for my partner and I to have fun while improving our communication. We played the app together and had fun practicing identifying feeling words using the Feeling Finder game. And we both created a comic in Comic Creator and shared it on our Facebook walls. I just started playing Bear Necessities and I was surprised by how much I enjoyed collecting the items to add to my Cozy Cavern. I really liked organizing them and thinking about how I could use different activities in my daily life to relax. I would definitely recommend this app for couples, and I'm sure it would be fun for families with young children too!
Family fun in one app!
I was glad to see that this app offered 4 different games plus a parent section. The games are great for my kids at different ages. the bear necessities game is basically physics but you are rewarded for your hard work with things that help you to calm down. That game is really fun! The feeling finder is great for my 8 year old-- we've had discussions now about different feeling words.
My son loves to post his comics he makes to FB. I really like the downloads in the parent section-- there are great ideas for things to do offline as a family. Great family app. Good alternative to other games as this one actually teaches my kids useful skills.
Fun and learning all in one!
I downloaded this fun and interactive app for families because my twin girls loved the cute bear and other whimsical graphics. The four fun games help kids communicate their feelings and identify coping skills (in the Cozy Cavern). The different levels make it fun for kids (and grown ups!) of all ages. I love the idea of the survey to help families identify all of their strengths. It encourages creativity as well by enabling kids to create their own comics and even share them with friends! My kids love it!