In just a few days, Santa Claus will jump into his reindeer-driven sleigh and begin his journey around the world to deliver presents to anxiously-awaiting boys and girls. His Christmas Eve travels can be closely followed by all who want to watch Saint Nick’s international jaunt using the fun and educational Google Santa Tracker.
The Google Santa Tracker site is filled with games and other interactive activities to keep children busy until Christmas Eve arrives. The activities found there can be played on a desktop computer and are also available on Android and iOS devices.
Similar to the NORAD Santa Tracker, the Google Santa Tracker allows the user to keep track of Santa and his reindeer, offering real-time location details. Google Maps are used throughout the process in order to accurately follow Santa.
Google has added some new features for 2016, and notes on its Google Santa Tracker site that this year, there is an even greater “focus on learning.” These new innovations include activities for educators that are based on subject matter that directly corresponds with lesson plans.
Additionally, the Google Santa Tracker website has new games for all to play. Google notes, “From sliding penguins to dancing elves, the residents of the North Pole are having the time of their lives in anticipation for the big day…”
There are also some exclusive items pertaining to the Google Santa Tracker that can only be accessed using an Android device. According to Google, “there are four new games,” one of which involving geolocation called Present Quest. This new game tasks the user with seeing how many of Santa’s misplaced Christmas gifts can be recovered.
Santa Claus can also be found if users venture to Google’s home page or use a Pixel device and ask, “where is Santa,” which should elicit some “creative responses,” according to AL.
Google Santa Tracker is not a new innovation, but has been around for 12 years. The fun begins each and every year when Santa’s Village opens on the website on December 1, as the countdown starts until Santa’s departure from the North Pole arrives on December 24. On the home page is a calendar filled with games and fun for each of these days.
The first game is called Present Bounce and challenges the user to maneuver a conveyor belt to accurately drop gifts into Santa’s bag. The second activity is a video entitled Santa’s Back, which features Santa and his elves as they prepare for their Christmas Eve trek. The third day’s lesson educates users regarding language and is called Translations, as users can translate a bevy of holiday related words from various languages into others with the press of a button. These are just of a few of the activities available on the site.
The most recent game is Memory Match, an addictive activity that requires users to open various shuddered windows that, when opened, reveal items that must be memorized and matched. Behind the shudders are things like Christmas trees, ornaments, and candies. There are several different levels and as the user progresses, more windows are available to open in order to match items, making the game more challenging as it goes along.
Each activity becomes available to open with each passing day until December 24 when the Google Santa Tracker will begin following Kris Kringle and his reindeer on their long journey. According to Google, its Santa Tracker site allows users to “Explore, play and learn with Santa’s Elves all December long.”
Currently, the Track Santa portion of the site is locked, but will open in a very short time, as Christmas Eve is just a day or so away. A timer on the Google Santa Tracker home page is counting down and when it hits zero, all can follow jolly Saint Nick and his reindeer (including Rudolph) as they journey across the world to bring joy to children young and old everywhere.
[Featured Image by Choreograph/Thinkstock]