The BBC has launched a new CBeebies app aimed at developing the life skills needed for primary school and beyond.
The Go Explore app contains a range of interactive games designed to introduce topics such as health and self-care, which appear on the UK Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum that is used at pre-schools, nurseries and school reception classes.
The app is free to download on Apple, Android and Amazon devices, the BBC confirmed.
Cheryl Taylor, head of content at BBC Children’s, said: “CBeebies Go Explore is a wonderful way for children to have fun with their favourite CBeebies characters and pick up important skills.
“Parents have told us they want their children to learn soft skills so they can better deal with the world they’re discovering. And we know parents also want their children to learn skills that help prepare them for school and beyond.
“CBeebies Go Explore aims to help in both of those areas in a really fun way – built around children’s curiosity and zest for discovering new things.”
Among the three games available in the app at launch is Another Happy Guest, linked to CBeebies show The Furchester Hotel, where children must complete a series of challenges to help hotel guests, including preparing well-balanced meals and choosing the right clothes for different weather conditions.
The BBC said this links to the physical development area of the EYFS curriculum dealing with health and self-care.
A den area of the app is also used to allow parents to get an overview of the games their children are playing and how they link to the curriculum.
BBC design and engineering senior product manager Jenny Chapman said: “Go Explore is the latest in our range of four CBeebies apps for parents and children. We wanted to create world-class public service apps based on young children’s main areas of interest: playing, creativity, reading and stories, and pre-school learning.
“It’s a fantastic addition to join CBeebies’ Playtime Island, Storytime and Get Creative, and we hope parents and little ones will enjoy exploring with some of their favourite CBeebies characters.”
Education Secretary Damian Hinds said: “It’s fantastic to see the BBC thinking of creative ways, like Go Explore, to make sure that young children have those vital skills they need to be happy and confident at school.
“We’ve made a pledge to halve the proportion of children leaving reception without the right communication, language and literacy skills in the next ten years, and the best chance we have of doing this is by engaging with businesses, charities and the public sector workforce.
“We have already brought together a wide range of organisations at our Home Learning Environment summit last year and we’ve launched £18m of projects to support young children, but we know more needs to be done.
“That’s why it’s brilliant to see this app, which will provide further support to families up and down the country past the investments we’re making in improving these skills. I hope more organisations follow the BBC’s example.”