App of the Week :: Nighty Night Construction Trucks

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  Nighty Night Construction Trucks is an interactive book app for children five and younger.  You have options to "read to me" or "read by myself". There is a soft lullaby playing when the storybook first opens that will stop while most of the story is being told until it is time for the day to end. You are able to choose a particular page by tapping the open book icon [top left corner] on main page. It's easy to turn the pages by tapping on an arrow at the bottom right corner of each page. The storybook app is interactive and children are able to recognize by stars and sparkles with a [very light] intensity of which item(s) on the pages. Each word is highlighted in the "read to me" option which makes it easy to follow along.     Nighty Night Construction Trucks is the second installment in the Nighty Night bedtime book series. Overall, it is the fourth … [Read more...]

App of the Week :: Count Dracu1 Meet My Friends

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  When App Developer Popcorn Grenade asked me to review their new app CountDrac1 I couldn't wait to check out this Halloween app!  This is my favorite time of year as many of you know (and some even share my favorite holiday - yep, Halloween) so this was a real treat.  We are greeted by CountDrac and he tells us to look around his house.  Among other things we see is a coffin that when touched opens and we fin Rasta "who is sad because he is missing his teddy bear, which is to bad." But don't worry, the skeleton teddy bear is on the ground and when Count Drac hands it to this Rasta hat wearing skeleton (I mean his name is Rasta after all) he thanks his friend.       Okay, so this is going to be a funny and silly app - can't wait!  When you touch the skull that is sitting on what looks like a monsters feet table it giggles while opening his mouth.  … [Read more...]

App of the Week :: WILD KRATTS World Adventure by PBS Kids

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      This week, PBS KIDS announced a brand new app called WILD KRATTS World Adventure. A must have-app for fans of the popular PBS KIDS series, WILD KRATTS, World Adventure brings animal science to life! Through 30 levels of game play, WILD KRATTS World Adventure helps build key skills and encourages science inquiry. With the app, children ages 4 to 8 can tilt and tap their way through games that help them learn how different animals live and adapt to their habitats.  My daughter liked playing the woodpecker game where she had to keep pecking at the tree to get at the bug.  Once she got the bug, she received points and moved up levels.  The whole time she is competing against an actual woodpecker on the other side of the tree and it is a race to see who will get to the bug first. Next game we played was the Dolphin Trash Collector where she played a … [Read more...]

App of the Week :: Fraggle Rock Game Day by Cupcake Digital

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I grew up watching Jim Henson's The Muppets and to this day have a soft spot for anything his company is connected to!  Jim Henson's Fraggle Rock Game Day by Cupcake Digital is so fun and lively!  Just open to the first page and you can see what I mean by lively - as you have the Fraggle Rock crew singing about "Dance your fears away, worries are for another day." You have the option to have it read to you or to read it yourself.  The main character is Red and  she announces that "Today is my Record-Breaking Day!" and she plans to "break records all day by doing everything faster... and higher... and LOUDER!"  Oh boy, are we in for a fun ride!  The animations are simple but I like that there are little sparkles that pop up to tell you where to touch on the screen.  When we touch the character they do a little dance or pop out of a rock, or in the case of the meat-eating plant (with teeth … [Read more...]

App of the Week: Sharing with Duckie Deck

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Developer Duckie Deck has created some very cute apps for toddlers on up.  Over eight million toddlers and preschoolers have played with their educational games.  Their apps cover important topics, from brushing teeth to sharing with others – things that are essential for a healthy and well-rounded young mind. By showing examples of everyday situations in an imaginative and stimulating way, their aim is to expand kids’ understanding of their world and make learning fun.     This week we are featuring their Sharing with Duckie Deck app.  The app opens up to a page where we have six games to choose from that includes sections on how to share, matching games and drawing games.  The sharing game was sweet.  There are four little kids at a dinner table and there is a large cake that we have to cut up and split between them equally.  If we don't give a piece to one of … [Read more...]

App of the Week: Treasure Kai and the Seven Cities of Gold

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We are big fans of Treasure Kai and the Lost Gold of Shark Island in this household as my six year old constantly goes back to this fun app!  Recently, Karen Robinson released part two in the Treasure Kai series called Treasure Kai and the Seven Cities of Gold.  As with the first app, you feel that you are part of an adventure and get really engrossed in the story and treasure hunting.  The story is fantastic and you are immediately swept into the adventure with Kai and his best friend, Kate. The story starts off with Kate running into Kai's room telling him about an amazing dream she had about a place called Shark Island and that Kai fell into quicksand... but she wasn't able to finish because Kai shocked face made her stop her story.  It turns out that Kai had the same dream!  He was captured by Dead Witch Tree (love the names throughout the story) and was able to get free by using … [Read more...]

App of the Week: Brush of Truth

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The Brush of Truth storybook app, written by Julie Landry Laviolette, is quite delightful and full of wonderful adventures for children ages 8-12 years of age. The story allows the reader to choose different paths you would take in the story and has 65 decision points that offers 20 different endings. The story places you and your sister, Erin, at a beach where you discover a magical paintbrush that once belonged to a medieval sorcerer. I bet you are intrigued now! As you uncover the magical powers of the paintbrush, you encounter a sea goddess, explore along the ocean floor and even get trapped in a sand castle. Middle-grade children will love the chance to chose different paths for the story and will keep coming back to try-out different story-lines to see what will happen! I know I went back several times to see where the story would progress. It is full of magic, adventure and … [Read more...]

App of the Week: Questions2Learn

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Questions2Learn is a tool for therapists, teachers, and parents to use to help individuals understand and answer who, what, when, and where questions.  One of the things I love about this app is that the creator, Leanne Pool, uses her therapy dogs to help encourage children learn how to read.  She told me that she worked with the organization called Human Animal Bond and would bring her dogs in to help.  This is what she had to say about her dogs, Moca and Dakota, and how they help children and seniors: "Moca and Dakota, my dogs, and are shown on my website & in my app. We volunteered through an organization called Human Animal Bond in Leavenworth, KS. Moca was a big hit in the school setting with the kids who read to her. She loved it. Dakota went into hospitals and nursing homes mostly. My dream is to open up a private practice for Speech/Language Therapy using my dogs in … [Read more...]

App of the Week: The Prisoner of Carrot Castle

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  Teaching kids the importance of eating quality foods is something I am quite passionate about.  One of the reasons I decided to get my masters in nutrition was because I wanted to know how best to take care of myself and my family as I truy believe that healthy foods are key to good health.  So when I came across Chris Pedersen's app The Prisoner of Carrot Castle - I was sold as it teaches kids how to eat healthy in a fun way. Ms. Pedersen does a great job teaching little ones the importance of healthy foods set in a magical world and Kate Jeong has done a wonderful job at illustrating this gorgeous and fun story.   I had a chance to speak to Chris Pedersen about her company, Purple Carrot Books, and her fun storybook app The Prisoner of Carrot Castle.    Tell us how Purple Carrot Books came about? While The Prisoner of Carrot Castle was in development as an app, I decided to … [Read more...]

App of the Week: Rhyme-n-Time with Jane and Blayne

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Rhyme-n-Time with Jane and Blayne This is a fun and educational app that helps teach little ones how to match words that rhyme.  My five year old was able to pick which words would rhyme by looking at the picture and understanding what the word meant.  It was a fun exercise for her to practice how to recognize words that rhyme and she really enjoyed it.  That is always the best way to learn -  having fun! Here is an excerpt from their website about the app: An educational app that focuses on, as you might guess, rhyming. Your child will have to find words that rhyme and words that do not in a fun format. There is also a wonderful rhyming story that goes along with the game. You can keep track of how your child is doing on a stats screen we provide. It shows you how many questions were answered correctly on the first, second and third tries. This app will not only teach your … [Read more...]