Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Apps and Shows of the Moment

I thought I’d share a few of the screen views we see on a regular basis around here. I love getting ideas from others about good apps for kids, so please comment with your favorites!

Apps

My sister Linsey told me about Duck Duck Moose apps for iPad and iPhone. She had some of the toddler apps for her daughter, and I found some preschool ones for Blair.

Blair LOVES Duck Duck Moose Reading (also called Kindergarten Reading).

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It focuses on letters, sounds, and small words. As she plays, the levels increase in difficulty by adding new sounds etc. At the completion of each level, she gets a new animal for her zoo. I don’t know how many levels there are, but she has has just passed 20. $.99 for iPhone and $1.99 for iPad.

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Also very neat for a wide age range is Duck Duck Moose Draw and Tell. Super cute drawing program with stencils, patterned paper, stickers, and recordings.

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We also have their Park Math, which is a good little app for counting and pre-math: addition, subtraction, patterns, sorting, and greater than / less than.

Fullscreen capture 3172013 22413 PM.bmp*One small con for the Duck Duck Moose apps: they do not transfer from one device to another. If you want it on both iPhone and iPad, you must purchase the app for each. They’re inexpensive, so the cost is still low if you purchase both. pics from http://www.duckduckmoose.com/

The Toca Boca apps are so cute. One of their free apps that Blair plays with a good bit is the Toca Kitchen Monsters. There are two monsters for whom she can select food and prepare it in the kitchen.

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She can slice, blend, fry, microwave, or boil any of the foods. If she doesn’t cook it, the monster may not eat it, and if she puts too much salt, he will spit it out! This is a mini version of their Toca Kitchen.

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An app we’ve used for quite some time now is Articulation Station. It began as an iPad and is now available for iPhone as well. It is primarily a speech therapy related app. The free version comes with activities for the letter “P.” One can purchase additional individual letters or buy them all for $49.99.

photo 1 (2)You can choose levels.

photo 4Then you can choose an activity.

We bought the letters that Blair needed to practice – B and S. We also needed P, and that one was free!

The difficulty of the activities ranges from toddler to school age children. You can track progress and record as well.

We can choose to have words with the “b” at the beginning, middle and/or the end.

These are little comprehension questions after a paragraph.

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At the end, you get a little praise screen!

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This word in the final B category, of course, is Blair’s favorite.

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Another very simple app that Blair likes is ABC Alphabet Phonics Lite by Grasshopper Apps. There’s not much to it, but she likes it. There are three letters on the screen, and the audio says “touch the __.”

Other free favorites: Mickey Mouse Road Rally, Watch Disney Junior, and PBS Kids.

Television

Blair is not a TV person. She’s too busy for it. But, if I can get her to sit for a minute, there are only a few things she will watch. One is a new show on PBS: Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, a spinoff from Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.

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This is a precious show with cute stories and even cuter little jingles that go with each episode’s theme. Blair’s favorite is episode 18, which is about getting ready for school and bedtime. There is a cute little song to remember the school or bedtime routine. And they sing a song in the bath that gets stuck in my head, “…sail the soapy seas….” Very cute show.

I beg Blair to watch Sofia the First on Disney Junior, and she just won’t. I watch it more than she does! It’s also a precious new show with good little story lines about kindness, not giving up, accepting others….

Those are the latest for us! We really don’t have much screen time around here at all. Blair is just more into asking me questions!

1 comments:

Sabelko's said...

We love Daniel Tiger! It comes on right after lunch and both my kids wait for it all day. Neat apps (now to get my husband to let the kids play with his iPhone)