When I Get Bigger by Mercer Mayer was published in print in 1985. It is a beloved story about Little Critter and was even released as a mini-hardback book. In this title we hear about all the amazing things Little Critter imagines being able to do when he gets bigger, like have a paper route, stay up late ... and go to first grade. An adorable story that children (eager to grow up) and parents (eager to keep little ones little) will enjoy together, over and over.
Many readers have asked, "What kind of animal is Little Critter?" According to Wikipedia, Mercer Mayer did not specify which type of animal Little Critter is, but "he resembles a hedgehog, hamster or guinea pig." So, basically he's a rodent ... although a rather lovable one! Over 200 books have been released in this popular series, not to mention a whole line of toys, dvds and other products.
This digital version adds a new twist, having the reader try to find all the little mice (14 in all) hidden on almost every page. When the child taps on a mouse, a chime sounds; at the end of the book, a page is displayed with the number of mice (of the total) successfully found. This little extra was a big hit with my kid and made re-reading a bit more fun. As a parent, I liked this interactivity because it rewarded my child for paying attention, although it did distract from the story on the first reading.
Like other omBooks by Oceanhouse Media, this app is interactive in a way that enhances early reading skills. Most images (of mom, sister, dad, Little Critter and many items in each scene), will name themselves aloud while the word briefly appears over the illustration. For example, touch a mouse and the word "mouse" appears and is spoken aloud by the narrator. If the word is also present in the text on that page, it highlights as spoken, providing nice auditory/visual word-reinforcement for young learners.
For early readers and pre-readers, the text also highlights as the narrator says each word. By the way, the young voice-actor is also easy to understand. I particularly liked the choice of child narration in the Little Critter book apps, since the story is told in the first-person. Overall, this is a cute book and a great read for children six and under. Recommended!
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Oceanhouse Media, Inc.
4 - 6 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: Yes
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 2 - 6 +
Little Critter knows that when he grows up, he'll be big enough to do lots of things ... like go out by himself and spend his own money. He'll look both ways and cross the street safely by himself, when he gets bigger. He'll even travel by himself, to visit Grandma & Grandpa ... and go to 1st grade.
Other things Little Critter plans for 'when he gets bigger' include having a real leather football, his own radio and a pair of 'superpro' roller skates. Maybe he'll even have a job as a paper boy. And he'll be big enough to push little kids on the swings at the playground.
With all these independent acts, you'd think Little Critter was ready to grow up right now ... but actually, just thinking about it has made him very tired. For now, he says, "I'm not bigger yet," and heads off to bed.