Archive for the ‘apps’ Category

Recommended App of the Week

December 13, 2014

toca natureToca Nature by Toca Boca

Compatibility: Requires iOS 5.0 or later.

Price: $2.99

Recommended for ages 5 and up.

Kids use their imagination to create their own world in nature. They can then explore their world by observing wildlife and feeding animals. The slow, peaceful pace of navigation and a relaxing soundtrack encourage kids to slow down and enjoy their surroundings. This quiet and easy-going approach is a refreshing characteristic that sets this app apart from apps that can be loud, busy, and overwhelming for young children. This app encourages kids to play and create a narrative based on the worlds they have made. Play is an important role in early literacy for young children.

A Common Sense Media review does note that, “The tap and drag navigation is very sensitive and can sometimes be a bit awkward; kids, especially younger ones, might need help, or just a bit of practice.”

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toca
Reviewed by Kate (Haggard)

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Recommended App of the Week

November 8, 2014

wheels on the busWheels on the Bus

by Duck Duck Moose, Inc.

Price: $1.99

Recommended for ages 2-6 years old

Compatibility: Requires iOS 6.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Have fun with the popular tune, “The Wheels on the Bus”, with your child. In addition to English, users can listen and sing along with the song in four other languages: Spanish, French, German, and Italian. You can even record your own voice!  Interact with the different verses by spinning the wheels fast or slow, opening and closing the door, swishing the windshield wipers back and forth, and other actions.

 

 

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Recommended App of the Week

July 12, 2014

1billnyemainBill Nye the Science Guy

Compatibility: Requires iOS 6.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Price:Free

Recommended for ages 7-10.

“Disney recently released an app called Bill Nye the Science Guy.  When you first open the app a voice over by Bill Nye exclaims, “You’ve arrived at my desk!” and a desk full of objects is shown.  Users can choose from objects on the desk, such as a rocket, a robot or a sundial, and the app will bring users into a different lesson. There is a huge variety of options to learn from such as: games designed to teach users about the solar system as you take pictures from a rocket, learning about planet Earth’s geological history while digging up a backyard, and cool optical illusions woven into a storyline about alien invasion.

In addition to games, there is also a book of do-it-yourself experiments and the six science experiments require nothing more than everyday household items. Be sure to check out the bobble head. It has interesting science facts to share.” From a review on Mrs. Yollis’ Classroom Blog.

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Recommended App of the Week

July 5, 2014

stickersudoku StickerSudoku

This logic game is exactly like Sudoku, but it replaces the numbers with stickers. For those unfamiliar with the rules of    Sudoku, there is a question mark button at the top right corner of the home screen. This app is very easy to play and  fun!  Kids develop problem solving skill that are age-appropriately challenging.

“One useful aspect of this app is that if the child incorrectly places an animal, it turns upside down, but stays in place.  This  allows for discussion of why the placement is incorrect and allows the child to use problem solving skills instead of simple trial and error.” –from a Center for Pediatric Therapy review.

 

Recommended ages: 4-7 years old.

Compatibility: Requires iOS 3.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

Price: Free

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Recommended App of the Week

June 21, 2014

a starfallreadStarfall Learn to Read

Compatible with iPhone, iPodTouch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire.

Price: $2.99

This app is phonics based.  In the “Play” section, there are interactive games for a child to make words- the narrator announces “make a word with -an to match the picture.”  Then a picture appears and the narrator pronounces the word- for example, a picture of a fan appears and the narrator says “fan”. The child has 4 letters to choose from.  If the wrong letter is chosen and dragged in front of -an to make the word, the letter moves back to its original place accompanied by a sound to indicate it is the wrong letter. When the correct letter is chosen and dragged in front of the -an, the letter stays in place and the word is pronounced.

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A matching game shows a picture on one card and a word on the other. When you match them correctly, the narrator pronounces the word.

The picture hunt game shows a drawing in black and white and when you find the word asked for, that image turns to color while the word is sounded out.

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“Starfall Learn to Read is an app version of the stellar learn-to-read website, Starfall. The app has the same content as the “Learn to Read” section of the site. There are 15 mini-books, each focusing on a specific vowel, along with videos and activities to enhance literacy learning. As with other Starfall apps, the thorough and careful design keeps kids focused on learning.” From Common Sense Media Review.

Recommended for preschool children.

Donna C. (Schimelpfenig Library)

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Recommended App of the Week

May 24, 2014

Moody Monster Manor Moody Monster Manor by Alex

Create your own monster avatar and play each of the four active games. Tilt your phone to shine Scared Sam’s flashlight  on his nightmares. Help Worried Wanda with her homework by tapping the correct answer. Set Confused Carl straight by  matching the monster’s facial expressions to the correct emotion. Follow a recipe and drag the ingredients into a mixing  bowl to feed Hungry Hank.

Moody Monster Manor teaches kids about emotions, animals, colors, and matching. The app helps increase problem-  solving skills, critical thinking, and emotional intelligence.

Price: Free

Recommended for children ages 3-8.

CompatabilityRequires iOS 3.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

 

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Recommended App of the Week

May 3, 2014

Mindsnacks - Spanish MindSnacks – Spanish

“You’ll transform into a Spanish speaking savant with lessons that go beyond memorization and teach things like word gender, pronoun usage and the conjugation of -AR, -ER and -IR verbs. And      since everyone learns at their own pace, our unique algorithm personalizes the experience by selectively repeating content with which you’ve struggled. What’s more, spoken audio clips will help    add that extra bit of panache to your pronunciation.

With 1000+ words to learn, 50 levels to master and 40+ hours of addictive content, this is the go-to Spanish app for adults, kids, students and travelers. Whether you’re a beginner or an  intermediate learner, it’s time to give your vocab a total body workout, Spanish style.” from the MindSnacks website

MindSnacks also has language apps for French, Italian, Portuguese, German, Chinese, and Japanese.

Recommended ages: 6 and up

Compatibility: Requires iOS 6.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

A free download includes 1 lesson and 2 games. For $4.99 you can upgrade to all available lessons with 9 games each.

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Recommended App of the Week

April 26, 2014

cinderella thumbnailCinderella by Nosy Crow 

From London-based independent publisher Nosy Crow comes a dynamic adaptation of the well-known fairy tale.  Readers can get involved in the story by helping Cinderella clean the kitchen, stacking the King’s invitations to the ball, dressing up the Stepsisters for the party, building the magical carriage with the Fairy Godmother, and choosing Cinderella’s dress.  You can even select the music for the Prince and Cinderella and watch them hit the dance floor! Do you want a waltz, disco or Bollywood?

Other useful options and features for young readers include:

  • Multiple reading modes: Read to Me, Read by Myself or Read and Play.
  • Choose how long text stays on the screen so beginning readers have enough time to read by themselves.
  • Choose between American or British spelling styles.
  • Help is embedded into the story. Characters offer hints about what to do on each page so even very young readers can participate fully.
  • Tap the characters to trigger additional dialogue.

A special treat for iPad 2 or iPhone 4 users – the front-facing camera activates in certain scenes and places the reader’s image in a mirror in the room!

Recommended for children ages 3 and up.

Compatibility: Requires iOS 4.3 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5. $4.99.

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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.

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Check out this link for more information from the developer.

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