Iphone App Reviews & Giveaway - Red Ted Art's Blog

Iphone App Reviews & Giveaway

| January 30, 2012 | 20 Comments

Well.. I haven’t done any iphone app reviews for a while! That is mainly because I like to download the app, and then let the children play with them for a while to see whether they come back to that app time and time again or not at all!

This week I have a few that Red Ted adores. Though I confess, I am not 100% certain of them myself. They main problem, that I am finding, as Red Ted gets older, is that the apps become more computer game-y. And I just haven’t gotten my head around that yet. What do I think about computer games?!?! Argh. So far all the apps have been about new words or doing e-puzzles or some number and letter recognition. Great in my eyes.

But slowly they are turning into apps about “winning” and completing challenges. How can I argue though with completing a challenge? Surely that is still good? There are also a number of “app books” out there, that promote themselves at apps, but I would say are more of a cartoon – again, Red Ted adores them, as does Pip Squeak, but they are not really that booked base (See the Dr Seuss range of apps by Oceanhouse media – they really do “read like” books with lots of words being emphasised and highlighted as you go along). What do I think of these? I don’t know…..

We received all of the apps below free of charge, but I only ever review the apps that we like…

So.

Rockford’s Rock Opera – an ecological musical

This is a series of apps about a little dog that goes on a number of ecological adventures.  I confess to not have watched them all yet (there are 4 apps with several chapters). But Red Ted is CONSTANTLY looking at these apps. They are a hybrid between story telling, musical and reading… Great for children’s listening skills. All the songs are accompanied by words, so if you (ahem) want to, you can sing a long with your children. The illustrations are captivating and interesting. There is a magical feel to the whole series. Kind of perfect for Christmas.

Like the sound of this iphone App? Want to win a WHOLE SET? All you have to do is stop by – leave a comment below, telling us what YOUR favourite App is and a winner will be drawn randomly!

Open to UK residence only. Giveaway closes on Tuesday 7th Feb 2012. Winner will be selected at random and decision will be final.

Hit Entertainment Fireman SamFireman Sam

Ok, this is one of those apps that I really cannot decide on what I think. On the one hand it really is rather good. Brilliant in fact. Red Ted adores it and wants to play it all the time. What I really like about it, is that all the instructions are written AND spoken. Some apps (see below), give you instructions, but if a child is playing by themselves and can’t read they find out more through trial and error what exactly they have to do. This app also gives you spoken hints as to what you need to do if it “senses” that the child isn’t playing it correctly (e.g. you need to scroll the screen to find things in the next of the room). It is very well designed and it is great for any child that is into Fireman Sam or the firebrigade in general (you get to see lots of their equipment etc. The only bit I am unsure of, is that it does have this taste of “early computer games”. Eek.

APP OF THE DAY: Tinga Tinga Tales review (iPad). Apps, App of the day, Tinga Tinga Tales, iPad apps, Dad 1Tinga Tinga Tales

We love the Tinga Tinga Tales on Cbeebies, so when we received this App for review, I thought the children would love it. Well they do. They do enjoy all creatures and different “games” they can play. However, having just looked at Fireman Sam, a version 2 could really benefit from voice over instructions. The challenges themselves are fun (there is only one that we don’t really get) and Red Ted likes playing on it. However, voiced instructions would help him more!

Guess with Jess

An app based our Jess the Cat. Overall another great app similar to Fireman Sam one above – there is a good voice over to help younger children understand what and how they need to do something. There are “spot the difference”, puzzles and painting games. What I like about the painting game in particular, is that you can mix colours and learn a bit of colour theory. Fabulous. There are one or two games within the app that we are little unsure of (how do me make the “what to ladybirds eat app” work?) but the majority are great. I love how you can grow a bean (by getting a pot, adding soil, seeds, water and sunshine etc). The  only but is the same as with the Fireman Sam one – is this a computer game disguised as a kids app? Or is that what kids apps are all about? Also there is one confusing feature – the child is asked whether they want to “Quit” or “Play Again”. You tick in the affirmative and cross in the negative. Red Ted regularly gets confused as to whether he is supposed to click on the tick or cross… e.g. “Tick to quit” and “tick to play again” – which is it?

 I learn with Transportation by Dada Company – last but not least, possibly my (!) favourite of today’s reviews is this quirky little app. Yes, it does the same as many other apps do – you look at colours, and numbers and words etc.. however, I just LOVE the music that goes with this app and the design. It is quirky, beautiful and individual. Which I love. The only “but” on this app, is that it has slightly longish load times between pages (which can be frustrating for a 2yrs old), but a) my kids have got used to it and still play and b) the developers are working on it. Big thumbs up. Nice educational app, not pretending to be anything it is…. Yay.

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Category: iphone App

Comments (20)

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  1. DADA Company says:

    Thanks for the review!!

  2. diana shepherd says:

    Bob Books #1 – Reading Magic is a top learning app for toddlers and for sure one of the best apps for toddlers and preschoolers to learn how to read my children love it and they\’re aged 4 & 5. Simple illustration bring magic to your kids, catch their attention in a fun, entertaining and educational way and help them to learn how to read :)
    No need to say that having Bob Books on your idevices makes the learning how to read experience accessible at home but also anywhere and whenever you want. Handy, you can have Bob Books app in one place, ready to use while waiting in line, in the car or in a restaurant, my children love to read and they find this app fun while learning i highly recommend this app for anyone with children.

  3. Erica Price says:

    Does it have to be for children? I probably use Tweetbot the most. Other honourable mentions go to Right Move (used a lot when househunting)and Plants v Zombies.

  4. Bernie says:

    I would love Ting Tales, as I think it would help get Ciara aged 3 ready for school in September and she would enjoy playing it. She still at the stage where she prefers books to gadgets!

  5. Jo-Anne Richards says:

    My fave app is Angry Birds as my 4 year old daughter loves to play it and is actually rather good at it too and it helps with hand eye cordination

  6. Juliet Lewin says:

    My boys love \’Sound touch\’.
    It is very simple & great for babies who are just learning to use touch screens.
    It has lots of different pictures & as you select one it shows a photo and accompanying sounds.
    Brilliant for it\’s simplicity.

  7. Juliet Lewin says:

    My children like Sound touch. Brilliant in it\’s simplicity (pictures & sounds of everyday objects, instruments, animals etc). Great for babies & touch screen beginners.

  8. Janet says:

    Mine and my 4 year old sons favourite iphone app is foocall as it means we can keep in touch with his dad while hes away with work. Teds in India at the moment, with foocall we can call him for little more than 1p per minute. Worth downloading if you have family abroad, hope this helps someone: http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=334029025&mt=8

  9. Solange says:

    My children like Sound Touch too

  10. Aly says:

    I haven\’t used tv character based apps so far as I\’ve never thought to look.I do have a few Montessori apps, ABC tracing, Spanish and French and BrainPOP UK for education and Angry Birds for games.

  11. Claire says:

    It has to be angry bird app keeps hubby an dour 4 yr old quiet for ages

  12. Lucy Robinson says:

    Our family love Smurfs and Snoopy.

  13. Alison says:

    I use Echofon all the time. My son loves Angry Birds

  14. cheryl lovell says:

    we love angry birds and cover orange!

  15. Cheryll H says:

    My 2 and 4 year olds all love a jigsaw app that I have on my iPad (sorry I can\’t remember what it\’s called!). My fave is Guardian Eyewitness app that publishes an iconic picture of world events every day. Love it. I also love Planets in 3D :)

  16. Rachael says:

    My kids love playing with Garageband, and they\’ve actually managed to put together some decent tunes. A friend of mine is developing an app at the moment, aimed at teaching how to play guitar and sing. The app hasn\’t been approved yet but his website is http://www.howtosingandplayguitar.com.

  17. Rebecca Denyer says:

    My favourite App is Angry Birds, my son has spent ages teaching me how to be (almost) as good as him at it

  18. Sue Robinson says:

    My favourite is Myfitnesspal which helps me to keep a food diary while trying to shed some pounds :)

  19. Sarah Parker says:

    I love the fireman sam app! my little boy would love it :)

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