Puppy Park

Puppy Park app screenshot.

Play the Puppy Park game with your child. Can you create shadows to provide shade for dogs and help keep them cool in the hot, sunny park?

5–15 minutes


Get Ready

Materials you will need:

  • Puppy Park digital game on an iPad
Puppy Park App

Things to do before the activity:

  • Play Puppy Park on your own before playing with your child. Notice that the game gets more challenging as you go through the 12 levels.
  • Levels 1–2. Listen to Nico describe how a shadow is made. Use small bushes to provide shade for the dogs.
  • Levels 3–6. Bushes. Use small, wide, and tall bushes to provide shade for the dogs.
  • Level 7. Bricks. Use bricks to provide shade for the dogs.
  • Levels 8–9. Bushes and bricks. Use both bushes and bricks to provide shade for the dogs.
  • Levels 10–12. Bushes, bricks, and trees. Use bushes, bricks, and trees to create shadows that provide shade for lots of dogs.

A character with a speech bubble and bat with a thought bubble.

Let's make a really wide shadow to give shade to a long dog.

We can put two bushes next to each other!


Step 1.

Before you play the game, imagine you are outside on a hot, sunny day. What does it feel like? Now imagine sitting in the shade under a big tree. What does it feel like?

Step 2.

Play the game. Tap the green play button. Notice the clouds moving away from the sun. Talk about how the shadow appears on the grass when the sunlight is able to shine on the tree stump. The tree stump blocks the sunlight and creates the shadow. Talk about the problem the dogs are having (they are too hot in the sun). How can we help solve the dogs’ problem?

Step 3.

Discuss available materials. Look at the purple materials box at the top of the screen. What materials can we use to build our park design? Talk about how each material can be used.

  • Bushes can be planted in the dirt. (Level 1)
  • Bricks can be put on the dirt and stacked on top of one another. (Level 7)
  • Trees can be planted in the dirt. (Level 10)

Step 4.

Note: Point out when new materials are added to the materials box. Talk about how to use the new material—for example, when wide and tall bushes are added:

  • A wide bush can create a big shadow that will cover the whole dog.
  • A tall bush can create a shadow that will reach dogs far from the dirt in the yard.

Step 5.

Design your park. Talk about how each material will create a shadow on the grass. Drag bushes, bricks, and a tree from the purple materials box to the dirt to block the sunlight and create shadows on the grass.

Step 6.

Test your design. Tap the purple “paw” button to test your park design. If your design is successful, all the smiling, happy dogs will wag their tails as they cool off in the shade. Did your design solve the dogs’ problem?

Step 7.

Change your design. If your park design did not provide shade for all the dogs, try again! Listen to Nico for help and then look for the dotted line on the dirt. Move materials (bushes, bricks, a tree) around until shadows fill the dotted outline. Tap the paw button again to test your new design.

Step 8.

A successful solution. Is your park full of smiling, happy dogs wagging their tails and cooling off in the shade? Great job! You solved the problem for the dogs!

Helpful Tips

You can continue to explore shadows at different times of the day:

  • If it is a hot, sunny day, you might want to go outside and experience how the hot sun/cool shade feels!
  • Use everyday materials to create shade for your stuffed animals. Put animals in a well-lit area. Then use books, baking trays, cereal boxes, and so on to create shade for your pets.