Archive for the ‘apps’ Category

Recommended App of the Week

April 19, 2014

lazoosquigglesLazoo: Squiggles! (optimized for iPad, iOS 5.0+):  Make squiggles with this fun and simple app.  Choose a scene: blank, one of the 12 installed in the app, or one from your device.  Then, listen to the instructions and add the appropriate “squiggles” on the drawing.  After you are done, press “go” and the drawing will become animated.  Take a look at the video below for a demonstration:

 

This app is available for free here and is recommended for ages 2 and up.

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Recommended App of the Week

March 29, 2014

diysunscienceDIY Sun Science (iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch; iOS 6.0+ ): This educational app was developed by the University of California Berkeley’s Lawrence Hall of Science.  The app includes 13 activities about the sun, including instructions, materials lists, videos, and images.  The activities can be completed easily at home using minimal supplies.  As an added bonus, the app links to live images of the sun from NASA’s SDO satellite.  This is a free app that you can download here.  Recommended for families and educators, and for children preschool and up.

diy-sun-science-image_0

diysun2

Check out this link for more information from the developer.

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Recommended App of the Week

March 22, 2014

Lazoo ZOOLazoo ZOO!
(Lazoo Worldwide)

It’s snack time at the zoo, and everybody’s hungry. Of course this is no ordinary zoo, it’s Lazoo Zoo, filled with giraffes whose spots magically change depending on what they’re fed, an ape who sprouts new hairstyles when he’s overfed and a finicky lion who tells you what he feels like eating. Just like at the real zoo, have fun feeding the animals using the handy dandy food dispenser. And if you don’t see the food you want in the dispenser, simply draw something new or look for hidden foods.

Lazoo ZOO screenshot

Features:

  • 11 animals to feed: lion, ape, chameleon, giraffe, hippo, whale, crocodile, crab, boat, bird, penguins
  • Dozens of foods to feed the animals
  • 8 super foods: birthday cake, soap, umbrella, candy cane, popcorn, peas, saxophone, pinata
  • Create your own foods
  • Surprise animations
  • Photo booth: snap a pic with your favorite animal friend (try to catch them smiling!)

Compatibility: Requires iOS 5.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Free. Recommended for ages 2 and up. Download from the App Store.

(Jocelyn, Davis Library)

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Recommended App of the Week

March 15, 2014

iFName:  iF Poems APP

Compatible with: iPhone and iPad. Requires iOS 4.30 or later.

This app contains over 250 classic poems by literary greats including:  Edgar Allen Poe, Emily Dickinson, William Shakespeare, A.A. Milne, William Butler Yeats, and Walt Whitman.  The collective poems are categorized by age ranges for children 0-6, 7-12, or 13 and above.  Bedtimes poems are great for the younger kids, though most poems are geared for school-aged children.iF Poems categories

With this app, users can do many things.  They can record themselves reading a poem, e-mail the poem to themselves or friends (including their recorded poem), tap any word within a poem to find its dictionary definition on the screen, save their favorite poems to “Favorites” page, and search by title, author, category (growing up, humor, love & friendship, bedtime, to name a few), first line or any word within the poem.  The app also provides brief biographies of poets as well.  One of the best features is the audible readings of poems by stars such as Bill Nighy and Helena Bonham Carter.iF Poems Poem

$.99

Recommended for school-aged children to adults.

(Vanessa, Davis Library)

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Recommended App of the Week

March 8, 2014

 

moosemathnewiconMoose Math (Compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android) iOS 5.1 or later; Android 2.3. and up. $1.99.

“Covers early math skills in a fun build-your-own-world environment. Every detail, from the kid-friendly narration to hints, is designed with young kids in mind. Parents can see reports of their kids’ progress. Parental control swipe screens keep kids from wandering into the reports or other app sections.  Kids enter Moose Juice, the smoothie shop, to practice counting, addition, and subtraction. They go to the Pet Shop to play Pet Bingo, where they work more on counting, addition, and subtraction or to play Paint Pet, where they’ll match animals by counting dots. Then they can visit the Lost & Found store, sort shapes and colors, and work on geometry, or they can play dot-to-dot, where they count by 1s, 2s, 5s, and 10s. As they complete each level, they get to add another feature to their town.” From Common Sense Media

moose juice

Recommended for kindergarten and first grade students.

Donna C (Schimelpfenig Library)

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Recommended App of the Week

March 1, 2014

Oobleck appName:  Bartholomew and the Oobleck – Dr. Seuss By Oceanhouse Media

Compatible with:  iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 5.0 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Every year in March, Dr. Seuss is celebrated in various ways.  This year, the Plano Public Library System is hosting a ‘Where in Plano Is Cat in the Hat?’ contest during the month of March.  We are also hosting various Dr. Seuss events at each library during spring break. Check our website for more details:  http://plano.gov/index.aspx?nid=203.

Also in March is a NEA’s Read Across America Day, a nationwide reading day that celebrates Seuss’ legacy as well.  Mark your calendar for March 3rd and read or share a Dr. Seuss tale. You can find several Dr. Seuss apps that feature his classic tales, all available via Oceanhouse Media

Highlighted below is the app for Bartholomew and the Oobleck by Dr. Seuss, a book that will be used in one of our Dr. Seuss programs in March.

OobleckOobleck Cover

Oobleck Cover

This Caldecott Honor-winning picture book is available in an app.  The classic book, written back in 1949, still has a modern day message: owning up to one’s mistakes and apologizing.  The story’s plot involves a character, Bartholomew, as he witnesses the greedy King Derwin of Didd.  The King demands that a magical concoction called “oobleck” fall from the sky, instead of just snow, fog, sunshine, and rain.  The King is quickly loathed by his town’s people when this oobleck wreaks havoc, but Bartholomew tries to help save the kingdom from the gooey oobleck mess.

Ooblek 1

Ooblek2In this app, users can explore the story in an interactive setting, with a lively narration of the book.  There is a highlighted narration feature that encourages literacy skills and allows users to follow along as the book is read aloud.

Characteristic Seuss illustrations and tappable words inspire users to learn new vocabulary.  There are also recordable options for users to personalize the story with their own narration, which can be shared with others.  There is an easy to navigate selected scene option, as well, for those who like a particular part of the story.

$4.99

Recommended for children ages 6-10.

(Vanessa, Davis Library)

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Recommended App of the Week

February 22, 2014

mothergooseloose

Felt Board-Mother Goose on the Loose (iPad, iOS 6.1+): This app is based on the award-winning early literacy program by Dr. Betsy Diamant-Cohen and the developers of the original felt app, Software Smoothie.  This app works like a digital felt board, with some extra fun features.  Move the characters and objects around on the screen to share Mother Goose rhymes and stories.  Have children create their own narratives and learn fine motor skills by moving the felt pieces and adding sound effects that are built into the app.  Here is Dr. Diamant-Cohen demonstrating the process here.

Need more ideas about how you could use this app?  Take a look at the developer site and there are some useful extension activities to share with children here.  You can also access this information via the app with an icon in the upper right hand corner.  

Download this app via iTunes, it is free!  Recommended for ages 2 and up.

mothergoose2

Screenshot of Two Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed

mothergoose3

Screenshot of Hickory Dickory Dock

mothergooseloosemothergooseloosemothergooseloosemothergooseloose

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Recommend App of the Week

February 15, 2014

I Love You TooI Love You Too - Ziggy Marley
(Oceanhouse Media)

Celebrate the love that exists between parent and child with this song-turned-book-turned-app by Ziggy Marley from his Grammy Award-winning album Family Time. This interactive book app allows children to turn pages while reading, and also navigate to their favorite scenes of the story. Kids can tap words and images to see the word and hear it read. Text is highlighted as the story is read, encouraging new and emerging readers to follow along. The menu offers four options: Read to Me, Read it Myself, Auto Play, and Sing Along. Marley both reads and sings the story in the last two options.

I Love You Too - Menu

Kids and parents can also record themselves reading and use the recording as the default narration, or even share it with other loved ones. Adults will appreciate parental controls that keep kids in the app. The illustrations are bright and colorful. Overall, a cheerful and happy storybook app to be shared with your little ones over and over again. It’s always a good time to say, “I love you!”

I Love You Too - Image

Compatibility: Requires iOS 5.0 or later. iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5. Android 2.1 or later.

Price: $2.99 (Currently on sale for Valentines Day!)

Recommended for ages 3 and up.

For more information on this app visit Oceanhouse Media. Download from the App Store for Apple, or Google Play for Android.

(Jocelyn, Davis Library)

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Recommend App of the Week

February 8, 2014

imagesName:  Byron Barton Collection #1 by Oceanhouse Media

Compatible with:  iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 5.0 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Voted one of the best of 2013 Book Apps in Kirkus Review, this app takes Byron Barton’s familiar transportation books and captures a new animated essence of their vehicles.  Users are sure to be excited about reading and learning new words through the brightly illustrated pages of various transportation books.  Topics include:  boats, planes, trains and trucks.   A lot of exploring can be achieved with each transportation book.

ByronBarton 2

 

Literacy skills are put to practice with spoken and highlighted narration.  There are interactive parts to each page with animations and movable objects. Users can record and share their own imaginative narrations to share with others as well.  This app also encourages learning new vocabulary with words and pictures that can be tapped and further explored. 

ByronBarton2

 

 

 

 

 

Some of the app’s fines features include: Record your own voice, page selector, share voice tracks, animations and movable objects on every page, professional narration.  Equipped with parental controls and an option to mute the traffic noises and other sound effects is an added bonus.

Byron Barton 3

 

 

 

 

 

$4.99 app (with a money back guarantee)

Recommended for children, ages 2-5.

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Recommended App of the Week

February 1, 2014

alpha totsAlpha Tots is an interactive way to introduce the alphabet to young children.  In one section, when  a letter is chosen, a voice says the name of the letter and the sound that letter makes. Then you play a game related to the letter.  For example with the letter B, children build a robot by dragging the parts into the correct places. When the child is finished the robot says “Congratulations your robot is complete”. Then the letter C appears on the right side and the child can continue.

letter B

If you tap on the musical notes in the right corner of the main page, the letters of the alphabet appear on the screen as the alphabet song is sung. Another area shows the upper and lower case versions of each letter. When you tap on a letter, a voice says the name of the letter.

Common Sense Media chose this app as one of the best of 2013. Read their review here.

Compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Nook HD.

Price: $1.99.  For children ages 2-5.

Donna C (Schimelpfenig Library)

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