What We Liked: Henrietta is Hungry is an incredibly charming storybook app – the young narrator is so expressive and lively, my girls really connect with her. Henrietta is so sweetly appealing, and is skillfully illustrated in a wide-eyed, innocent anime-inspired style. My children love the food and all the exotic dishes that Henrietta tries, the ethnic costumes she dons and the backgrounds of the environments she eats in.
I always appreciate storybook apps that include literacy-support features like word-by-word highlighting that accompanies the reading of the story. This app allows for a variety of configurations by toggling the options that can allow for narration only, narration and word highlighting, and for silent reading. The app can even just highlight words without audio – that’s not a common feature at all, but can be used to help children track from word to word while reading silently if they struggle with staying focused.
I don’t own a copy of the print title, but I think it would be a favorite here – my little ones have gone through the app REPEATEDLY! The entire food theme is a fascinating way to approach world travels and international exposure. My oldest loves that the app includes a recipe (though she hasn’t tried it yet).
What We Didn’t Like: The audio hot spots are a bit irregular, some pages include them, and others don’t. Also – the world map at the end of the app doesn’t have any sound effects. I would consider it basic interactivity on that page if it would say the names of the oceans and continents when tapped. It would be REALLY neat if the country name and name of the food consumed there popped up when the various different places Henrietta visited are tapped.
Overall: Henrietta is Hungry takes your child on a whirlwind trip around the world as seen through the experiences of a little girl in search of the perfect meal. International cuisine, exotic locales, lively narration and charming illustrations seal the deal on this high-interest storybook app that gives children an early sense of the wider world around them. Budding foodies and armchair travelers will love it!
Overall Rating: 5/5 - Mom’s Rating: 4/5 - Kids’ Rating: 5/5
Recommended Grades/Ages: Kindergarten, Grades 1-3
Skills Developed: Storybook, Geography, Food
This review was originally published by AppsforHomeschooling.com on February 3, 2013.
For homeschoolers, by a homeschooler. Jennifer Bogart, founded AppsforHomeschooling.com. She has five children, ages 0 to 12. She's an "app-loving, aspiring geek dedicated to helping you hunt down the best homeschooling apps" and you can find more reviews on her site for everything from Toddlers to Tweens.
[Video is for another PicPocket title by Nina Lim, Super Harry's Rotten Luck]
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Nina Lim/Terence Gomez
Take 2 Ventures LLC
4 - 6 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: Yes
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 4 - 9
English • French •
App Description: (via AppsforHomeschooling.com)
Henrietta is Hungry is an app based on the paperback version of the story written by Nina Lim and illustrated by Terence Gomez. It follows a lively little girl who loves to eat new and exotic foods in her journey around the world and back again to her own kitchen.
Henrietta’s appetite for new flavors has taken her from Thailand to France and Scotland. When her palate becomes jaded she heads to even more exotic locations such as Japan, China, Dehli, Greece, and more to sample their cuisines! Each time she feels disappointed – nothing quite suits her tastes for the unusual and surprising.
Finally she puts her creativity to good use by composing her own master soup that she invites her friends who hail from many lands and cultures who bring their own cultural specialties over for a world-cuisine potluck at her place.
The app also includes a map of the world with the continents and oceans marked along with pictorial images of landforms, landmarks, and wildlife. Also included is a recipe for Henrietta’s Chicken Soup.
The app includes charming narration by a young, expressive reader and word-by-word highlighting. Pages turn by swiping and also include some auto-playing animations. Some pages also include bonus sound effects that can be played by tapping the illustrations.
Free downloadable enrichment plans are available for this app (6 pages). They are designed to help you explore the themes of international friendship, food, culture, multiculturalism, geography and feelings and emotions that are included in the app. Ideas for art, geography, writing, research, and more are included – my favorite is charting Henrietta’s journeys on a map of the world.
The app options (behind the tiny ‘i’ button) allow you to turn both playing audio and highlighting words on and off.
Other Notes: This app doesn’t include any advertising, in-app purchases, social media integration, or email links. There are some text-only website addresses and some external links to the App Store included.