Monday, January 20, 2014

2013 iPad App Reviews at The Book Chook

2013 iPad App Reviews at The Book Chook

by Susan Stephenson,

Here are the iPad apps I reviewed in 2013. I’ve added a little teaser to each one, then linked to my review here at The Book Chook. You'll find some fascinating creative apps, apps that promote word play, story apps, several apps that encourage kids to create a digital story, image editors, puzzle and pattern apps, and apps that promote learning.

Night Zookeeper Drawing Torch: First of all, I love Night Zookeeper Drawing Torch's emphasis on story! I definitely approve of the quirkiness of creatures like spying giraffes, time-travelling elephants and singing fish. Read more.

Night Zookeeper Teleporting Torch: The idea of extending the family and community aspect of this new app really appeals to me - by involving parents, teachers and friends, we encourage kids to share with an authentic and familiar audience. Read more.

Strip Designer: I'm genuinely excited about the potential for self-expression and creativity in the iPad app, Strip Designer. While it's a comic editor, and a good one, it's also a wonderful visual way for kids to create and to demonstrate learning. Read more.

Word Mover: As soon as I read about it, I downloaded Word Mover to my iPad. 30 seconds later I was creating my first poem. It's really that simple. Read More

Trading Cards: Kids love to collect trading cards. This app encourages them to create their own! Read more.

Haiku Deck: This is an elegant, polished and generous app. It's been well-designed with loads of features I appreciate. The free version is plenty for kids to create a story and set it free. I predict that teens who are into creative writing, particularly young poets, will enjoy the app as much as I do. Read more.

Puzzle Farm: Here’s a simple digital puzzle game where young kids only need to tap and drag parts of pictures from a cloud to a scene below. The scene has a matching shaped cork board piece, just waiting for a child to fill it with a puzzle piece. Some pieces even have a jigsaw-shaped nub that slots into its respective waiting shape, a good introduction to real jigsaw puzzles. Read more.

ZoLO: A quality app does more than just occupy, it encourages kids to think, ponder, create and dream. Read more.

Little Things: Puzzle apps are a great way to sneak some brain exercise into screen fun! Read more.

ABC Wildlife: An app that has the potential to engage kids in learning about animals. Read more.

PicCollage: For kids who want to tell a digital story with Pic Collage, they could start by thinking about the story they'd like to tell. Then they could try using their iPad camera to photograph toys or figurines the way they want, or perhaps to take snaps of a holiday or family members. Read more.

Draw Along with Stella and Sam: Based on the picture books by Marie-Louise Gay, in this app children choose shapes, decorate them and watch them come to life in very cute animation. Read more.

Stella and Sam Story Pack: 5 gentle and lovely interactive stories from Marie-Louise Gay. Read more.

Moody Monster Manor: This one hasn’t been updated in a while, but it’s free. It encourages kids to think about emotions, and even create their own monster avatars. Read more.

ComicsHead: Great possibilities for kids to create their own digital stories. Read more.

SparkleFish: Here’s an app that encourages kids to have fun with words and hopefully go on and create their own stories. Read more.

Shake-a-Phrase: Another app that encourages kids to play with words. Read more.

My Mum’s the Best: Lovely digital version of the Bruce Whatley picture book. Read more.

Avokiddo Emotions: Fun interactive and creative app that encourages kids to explore emotions. Read more.

Make-a-Mosaic: Create patterns and explore symmetry. Read more.

Moku Hanga: Encourage kids to explore with their camera and filters via apps like MokuHanga. Read more.

Nott Won’t Sleep: A charming interactive bedtime story for children. Read more.

Anagram Twist: Playing with words helps children develop literacy skills. Read more.

Hairy Maclary, Scattercat: A fun Hairy Maclary adventure, repackaged for the digital generation. Read more.

Wanderful Interactive Storybook Sampler: Great stories with such fun interactivity! Read more.

Visual Poet: Encourage kids to create visual poetry very simply. Read more.

I Got This Hat: Children can choose from a range of hats to add to the book’s hero or their own photos, taken with the iPad/iPhone camera. Read more.

Little Fox Music Box: I love apps that encourage kids to create. In Little Fox Music Box, children will find such a fun studio where they can record themselves singing and making music. And what music it is! The Fox Studio is an interactive music making wonderland. Read more.

I'm curating apps that interest me (apps that encourage kids to create, involve themselves with story, play with words, enjoy learning) at Pinterest. I hope to bring you reviews of many of these apps this year. 

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