Monday, January 5, 2015

Children’s iPad App, Puppet Workshop

Children’s iPad App, Puppet Workshop 
by Susan Stephenson,

Here's a fun app for kids that also encourages them to create.

From the developers:

Puppet Workshop was created to develop your child's creativity. Choose a sock or glove which will become a virtual puppet. Create the eyes, nose, mouth and hair using a variety of buttons, strands, ornaments, etc. Place the puppet on the background available in the app or upload your own background from camera roll on your iPad. Alternatively, your child may use some paper, markers, crayons and independently create his or her own background that you can use in Puppet Workshop.

Do you like this game? Easy as 1-2-3 – use any socks, buttons, threads that you can find at home and create your own hand puppets. Put them on your hands, play different roles and have a lot of fun.

What I liked:

The app works easily from the start, allowing users to scroll across through multiple socks via arrows, then slide down through menus of ornaments. Kids can choose a background for a puppet, or put it on a picture from the camera roll. The elements provided to users for decorating puppets have been carefully devised to resemble real world bits and bobs: buttons, scraps of wool, string and foil, feathers etc

I love what puppets offer kids. As you can see above, there is encouragement within the app for children to move on from digital play to real-world play. Kids could even design their own puppets in the app, then try to duplicate that puppet with craft materials.

*It would be great if the saved puppet was able to be saved to the Camera Roll, rather than within the app. Children could export the images and go on to create little caption books starring the puppets they make. The images above, of my puppets Siderknee, Footsie and Toesette, were captured via a screen grab. *UPDATE: The green camera icon top left, allows the puppet to be saved to the camera roll. Thanks to the developers for letting me know!

Kids will love creating their own digital puppets. My hope is they will go on to explore the creation of all sorts of puppets out of real physical materials. As I said in Last Minute Children’s Gift Ideas - Toys, Apps and Books 2014,  if this app is a gift, add value to it “by creating a craft box with colourful old socks, buttons, paper and wool scraps, foil, pipe cleaners, glue, darning needle etc” for your children.

iTunes Australia (At time of writing: $AU3.79)

iTunes USA (At time of writing: $US2.99)

If you’re interested in creative apps for kids, check out Creating with Kids and Apps, a list of apps that encourage kids to create, with links to my reviews and articles.

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