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Just Grandma and Me - Little Critter

May 7, 2011

By: Carisa Kluver

The Digital Media Diet

Spending the day with Grandma is the best!

Just Grandma and Me by Mercer Mayer was published in print in 1983. It is a beloved story about 'Little Critter' and a trip he takes with Grandma to the beach. He is a cheery companion as he 'helps' by washing the sand off her hot dog in the ocean. He also almost blows away with the beach umbrella and gets to bury Grandma in the sand. She shows good cheer and tireless patience with her favorite little guy.

Many readers have asked, "What kind of animal is Little Critter?" According to Wikipedia, Mercer Mayer did not specify which type of animal the 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.

It is a short, but sweet story that got 4.5 stars from 16 reviews at Amazon.com. This digital version includes a great game, where you hunt for a dozen spiders and grasshopper well hidden in Mayer's delightful illustrations. This little extra was a big hit with my preschooler and made re-reading especially fun for him. As a parent, I liked this interactivity because it was well integrated into the story and rewarded my child for paying attention.

Like the Seuss books (also by Oceanhouse Media), this book is interactive in a way that enhances early reading skills. Most images (of Grandma, Little Critter and almost everything at the beach) will name themselves aloud while the word briefly appears over the illustration. For example, touch the beach umbrella in Little Critter's hand on the second page and the word "umbrella" appears and is spoken aloud by the narrator.

For young readers and pre-readers, the text also highlights as the narrator says each word. The delightful child narrator is also easy to understand. I particularly liked the child narration since the story is told in the first-person by Little Critter.  Overall this is a great read for Mother's Day or any day - just the right length for bedtime and full of charm.

[♥ Wishing all the moms & grandmas a Happy Mother's Day! Especially my own mom, who is grandma to my little critter. Thanks for all you do! ♥]

All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.


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Just Grandma and Me - Little Critter

May 7, 2011

By: Carisa Kluver

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Mercer Mayer

Oceanhouse Media

Length (time):
4 - 6 Minutes

Based on non-digital book: Yes

Allows Own Narration:

Uses Motion: No

Age: 3 - 6 +

English •

Length (pages):
16 Pages


Story Synopsis - Just Grandma and Me - Little Critter

Little Critter goes to the beach with his Grandmother in this little ebook.  They take the bus and get there just in time. Little Critter gets into lots of his typical trouble. He almost blows away with the beach umbrella, washes off their food in the waves and gives Grandma a shell with a crab still in it. She helps Little Critter with his wading toy, holds him in the deeper waves and helps him see with goggles underwater. She even lets him bury her in the sand. When his sandcastle washes away Little Critter is very sad. Grandma tells him that they can build a new one next time. On the way home, a very tired Little Critter sleeps against Grandma on the bus, have had a great day with just his grandmother.


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Orientation: Landscape & Portrait

Format: Universal


Autoplay, Read-it-myself, Read-to-me, News on/off, Sound on/off, Links to: Web, AppStore, Facebook, Twitter

App Release Date:


Size: 14.8 MB

Version: 1.08.1

Lite Version Available: No



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