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Just Lost - Little Critter

September 3, 2013

By: Carisa Kluver

The Digital Media Diet

Little Critter gets lost ... and found!

Just Lost - Little Critter by Mercer Mayer is based on one of the sweetest Little Critter titles, published in print in 1994. In this book, Little Critter goes shopping at the mall with his mom but looses track of her in the crowd. He explores the stores (starting with toys, of course) and makes mischief before finally being reunited with his family. The digital version of this book also adds a new twist, keeping track as the young reader tries to find all 21 of the little mice that Mayer hid in his detailed illustrations.

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. 
Like other apps by Oceanhouse Media, this book is interactive in a way that enhances early reading skills. Most images (of mom, Little Critter and the people & things around them), will name themselves aloud while the word briefly appears over the illustration. For example, touch Little Critter's shoe (in the first scene he loses his mother while tying his laces) and the word will appear on the screen simultaneously with audio narration. Additionally, the text on the page will highlight if the word is in the story. This provides nice audio-visual reinforcement for early literacy. The app also has great settings, including the ability to record your own narration, turn off sound effects or even to disable the interactive elements. Simple navigation is also intuitive with a thumbnail page guide.
For young readers and pre-readers, the text can be set to highlight as the narrator says each word. The delightful child narrator is easy to understand and a perfect fit, since the story is told in the first-person by Little Critter. Featuring the common parent-child drama and emotional roller-coaster that children experience when they get lost in public, this title will resonate with both young and old alike.
This app has been thoroughly evaluated by our staff. Please click on the 'star ratings' tab above, to see how it fared in all nine of our rating categories. See synopsis tab for more details about the storyline.

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 Lost - Little Critter

September 3, 2013

By: Carisa Kluver

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Gina and Mercer Mayer

Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

Length (time):
5 - 7 Minutes

Based on non-digital book: Yes

Allows Own Narration:

Uses Motion: No

Age: 2 - 6 +

English •

Length (pages):
23 Pages


Story Synopsis - Just Lost - Little Critter

Little Critter has quite an adventure at the mall when he gets separated from his mom! He bravely keeps calm, asks for help from a security guard and is soon reunited with his lost mother. Young children will be reassured by the happy ending and learn what they can do in a similar situation.

Mercer Mayer's Little Critter stories, which address all the major issues of growing up, are perennial favorites of parents and children.

New features only available in this interactive omBook include professional narration, background audio and enlarged artwork for each scene.  

To promote reading in young children, individual words are highlighted as the story is read and words zoom up when pictures are touched. By combining the original text and artwork of author Mercer Mayer with features that entertain and promote reading, this omBook appeals to readers of all ages.

Recommended Ages: 2 - 5

[Source: iTunes]


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Orientation: Landscape

Format: Universal


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

App Release Date:


Size: 22.36 MB

Version: 2.1

Lite Version Available: No



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