There are a lot of versions of Jack and the Beanstalk in the app store right now, but this one is our favorite, so far. This ebook is so big, so interactive and so filled with hidden games and other surprises that I cannot begin to detail them all.
It's a relatively long book at 32 pages, but the real bulk of this app is in the interactivity hidden on every page. Drag the sun on the first page downward and the whole scene turns to night-time, touch the characters and they sing, talk and even trigger games, like a memory match game that is embedded in the middle of the book.
There is an extensive page index that indicates all the different interactive elements, since it would be hard to discover them all on your own without many, many re-plays. Replay value is the real appeal of this book, especially as a diversion for a child by themselves.
While I enjoyed this book the first couple times I read it with my son, it did start to grate on me after awhile, mostly because the number of times my son is amused by the same animations, songs and character's funny sayings is considerably more than any adult would enjoy. So bedtime reading is out for this one, but for every other setting, it's a winner.
The developer has also constantly improved this book since we downloaded it this summer, adding more games, hidden 'eggs' that hatch dancing baby chickens, and much more. It's one of the pricier offerings in the app store (and not one that's ever been discounted, so far, BTW), but ultimately it's so packed with activities that it's worth it.
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
15 - 20 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: No
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: Yes
Age: 3 - 8 +
In this version of the classic tale, Jack trades the cow for magic beans that sprout into the beanstalk. Once he arrives at the castle, the giant's wife is supportive, showing Jack around, but warns that her husband will eat Jack if he returns home. Of course the giant returns, as Jack runs off with the hen that lays golden eggs & the magical harp. Jack tricks the Giant into following him down the stalk and then cuts it down, causing the giant to fall into a deep crater in the ground. And of course, then everyone lives happily ever after.