123 Shape Up Number Town, Learn to Count by 123 Number Fun Pty Ltd

123 Shape Up Number Town is part of a series of app books by Jane Hague. This Australian series is set in a town with many interesting characters - all numbered. For instance there is Tilly Two herself and Policeman Ernie Eight. The main character of this story is Sally Seven the Sports Star who is trying to help the school children stay fit. 

One day, Sally Seven has an idea for a 'walking school bus' as a way for children to walk to school. They all meet - along with adult volunteers - to walk to school together the next morning. Sally also inspires the townsfolk to roller-skate, take karate and go bowling in this great story about physical fitness. The book also re-enforces Read more …

Oh, the Things You Can Do That Are Good For You! (Dr. Seuss/Cat in the Hat) by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

Young readers will love learning with Oh, the Things You Can Do That Are Good For You! (Dr. Seuss/Cat in the Hat). This non-fiction title, published first in print in 2001, was created to give children ages 5-8 the chance to learn about keeping their bodies healthy, with a familiar tour guide, The Cat in the Hat. The learning library series was created in the late 1990's by Random House with a talented team of illustrators, writers & educators, who mimic Seuss's rhyming verse and quirky illustrations beautifully.

And now the Cat-in-the-Hat Learning Library books are available as enhanced books, with the help of Oceanhouse Media. Featuring light Read more …

Milly, Molly and the Tree Hut HD by Kiwa Media

Milly, Molly and the Tree Hut is one of the "Milly, Molly" books based on a popular educational series from New Zealand. These children's books have been published in print since 2000. They are about the adventures of two little girls from different ethnic backgrounds and often include their multi-cultural friends. The series has the tag line, "We may look different but we feel the same.” See the youtube clip at the bottom of this review to hear the theme song.

The print version of this title, published in 2004, is listed under the topic 'health' and focuses on the girls' friend Maxter and his obsession with TV. His mother wants him to play outside and get exercise, so Milly and Read more …

Fierce Grey Mouse HD by Tizio BV

Prepare yourself for one very cute mouse story. This book opens with a little grey mouse removing the word 'little' to put the word 'fierce' in its place for the title page. The letters are like cut-outs from magazine copy, giving the book a whimsical quality. The illustrations are hand-drawn and color-drenched, creating the perfect backdrop to the story. Every page is also filled with small but delightful animated elements triggered by tapping on the characters.

Little grey mouse wants to be fierce. So he lifts weights, practices pouncing and perfects his roar. Then he hides in a tree to wait for someone to scare. His good friends come by first, calling for their little mouse friend to Read more …

Collins Big Cat: Playing Story Creator by Harper Collins Publishers Limited

The Collins Big Cat series was created in the past decade by UK based Collins Education, the third-largest educational publishing house in the United Kingdom, and an imprint of Harper Collins Publishers. Playing, based on the print title by Tim Hopgood, was published in 2010. According to the description:

"It's fun to play outside, and these three children enjoy it in all seasons, summer, autumn, winter and spring - whatever the weather! Each season is evocatively illustrated by Tim Hopgood - 2008 winner of Booktrust's Best Emerging Illustrator Award, developing the text and encouraging discussion." [Source: Amazon]

In digital form, this series features light Read more …

Wubbzy's Dance Party by CUPCAKE DIGITAL INC

The Wow Wow Wubbzy’s song is very pretty popular around our household!  It is very catchy what can I say?!  The new Wow! Wow! Wuzzby app by Cupcake Digital is pretty catchy and quite fun as well!  The first page opens up and we can chose between three different color stars – a purple, blue and pink one.  Of course we started out with the purple star and the story starts off.  It was a busy day in Wuzzleburg.  Wubbzy and his friends were getting the Wubb Club ready for the annual dance party.  You can have it read to you or you can read it yourself.  Flying across the first page are two little blue birds that squawk when you Read more …

Builda the Re-Bicycler by National Network of Digital Schools Corp

Midlandia is a fictional land where anthropomorphized canines work, live and have all sorts of adventures. One Midlandian, Builda, is the owner of the bicycle factory, supplying everyone with their favorite form of transportation. When a bike breaks, even with something as small as a flat tire, the habit in town is to throw it away and get a new one. But the local dump is beginning to overflow when Builda has a big idea that can make life better for everyone.

This lightly animated and interactive series is full of fun illustrations with lots of detail to show off Midlandia and its inhabitants. Nice hints show kids where to tap, triggering sound effects and cute animations, most of which are Read more …

Even Monsters Get Sick by Busy Bee Studios

Even Monsters Get Sick, written and illustrated by Michael Bruza, is the latest app for youngsters from Busy Bee Studios, makers of the popular Zoo Train. The book is a true gem and a perfect example of why every family needs to invest in an iPad. I was hooked from the first page. If the Apple Stores held midnight release parties for new apps, I’d be one of the crazies standing in line for this one. That’s high praise considering my kids are 10 and one is about to start Hunger Games.

The story’s narrator, who speaks in a child’s voice, is Harry. He trades Mona stickers, gum and a skateboard for her monster, Zub. Trades of things of vastly unequal worth Read more …

Tacky and the Winter Games by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

The winter games have come to the nice icy land ... and Tacky and his brood are competing against rivals from the Highlands, Lowlands and more. But will they win a medal? It seems at first that having an 'odd bird' on their team is working against them. In the end, Tacky's unconventional approach is a winning one, although not before several hilarious plot twists.

Like other omBooks from Oceanhouse Media, this title is solidly made with simple swipe-style page turning. It would benefit from the addition of a page guide, but is otherwise easily navigated by little fingers. The story, by Helen Lester, is beloved in print, published in 2005. The digital version is no exception, only Read more …

Milly, Molly and the Bike Ride HD by Kiwa Media

Milly, Molly and the Bike Ride is one of the "Milly, Molly" books based on a popular educational series from New Zealand. These children's books have been published in print since 2000. They are about the adventures of two little girls from different ethnic backgrounds and often include their multi-cultural friends. The series has the tag line, "We may look different but we feel the same.” See the youtube clip at the bottom of this review to hear the theme song.

The print version of this title, published in 2005, is listed under the topic 'self-improvement' and focuses on the quality of "punctuality". In the story, Milly & Molly are taking a bike ride to one of the Read more …

Maid Marian Muffins by Maid Marian Muffins LLC

Maid Marian Muffins was the first book in a while to make my son laugh out loud. It quickly became a favorite ebook and regular feature at bedtime in our house.

The book stars a quirky Brooklynite with a hankering for an old-fashioned blueberry muffin done right. She and her faithful canine, Marvin, search far and wide for the perfect baked goods in Brooklyn. Finding no muffin tasty enough to satisfy her craving, Marian embarks on a hilarious adventure to make her very own culinary masterpieces.

The final recipe that results is so sublime that Marian & Marvin decide to make a business out of delivering her muffins all over town. She even builds a 'muffin-mobile' - a bike with Read more …

Gerry the Giraffe HD by Take 2 Ventures LLC

Gerry the Giraffe HD is a delightful story about Gerry and his quest to improve his volleyball skills written by Melissa Northway of Polka Dots Publishing and published by PicPocket Books. This beautifully illustrated book is set in Africa where giraffes love to play volleyball. Gerry is left behind when his friends on the “Super Sonics” team go off to volleyball camp. Gerry is sad that he is not invited to volleyball camp because he is small and they believe he is unable to play. His mother gives the sage advice that he will grow up and perhaps he should try to improve his skills over the summer. Gerry thinks about it and decides that his Dad’s advice of Read more …

Tractor Mac, You're A Winner HD by PicPocket Books

Tractor Mac is a charismatic red tractor with headlight eyes.  In "You're a Winner", based on the print book published by Billy Steers in 2007, Tractor Mac and Farmer Bill are getting ready for the county fair and a big tractor pull.  The illustrations and artwork are a perfect fit for this story about being a good sport when you don't win and instead 'winning' by being helpful.  In this story, the carousel breaks down, so even though Mac is disappointed when he loses the tractor pull, he gets to feel useful by using his motor to get the carousel turning again.  All the children are very happy and Mac realizes there are more ways to be a winner than just winning a Read more …

Discover Your Body HD by ClearVision Sp. z o.o.

Discover Your Body is a wonderful learning app. It's not really a book, but more of an educational tour of the body's systems including the internal organs, muscles and skeleton. The app has a variety of activies with narrated text to go along. It explains each system of the body and its role.The app is broken down into three activities: Explore, Assemble and Color.

Under Explore, you can choose a boy or girl body and one of five subjects that include the internal organs, skeleton, muscles, blood and respiratory systems. Under Assemble, you can place each of the parts of the body, internal organs or skeleton back together. The body parts need to be placed very precisely to fit right, which Read more …

The Berenstain Bears Computer Trouble by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

There have been hundreds of Berenstain Bears stories published since the first one debuted 1962. Computer Trouble is one of HarperCollins square paperback series, first published in print in 2010. According to Wikipedia:

"The books feature a family of anthropomorphic grizzly bears who generally learn a moral or safety-related lesson in the course of each story. Since the 1962 debut of the first Berenstain Bears book, The Big Honey Hunt, the series has grown to over 300 titles, which have sold approximately 260 million copies in 23 languages."

This formula, sometimes criticized for being too moralistically simplistic, has been a fast Read more …

A Soccer (or Football) Sleepover in Brazil by Forty Winks, LLC

A Soccer (or Football) Sleepover in Brazil by Forty Winks is a iPad only app designed in an interactive storybook format featuring a world cup soccer championship.  The app features the following reading methods: read to me without highlights, read to me with highlights and read by myself.  The app also provides “fun facts” as glossary words which pop up on the bottom of the screen after the pages are in the “read to me” mode.   The app is designed for children from late preschool (age 4) through early elementary school (age 8).  Themes in the book included: friendship, sports, social issues as well as integration with national and international Read more …


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