Tilly’s Petting Farm App

Move over Old McDonald, Tilly has a farm too, and this one teaches you more than just animal sounds. E-I-E-I-O

Tilly’s Petting Farm app by Shoto is a fun, bright, educational app for children age 1-7, that focuses on speaking full and complete sentences. Children learn a great deal of vocabulary about life on a farm, though just a few words aren’t typically used in American English. This isn’t a big deal to me;  just another learning opportunity to have with your children about different cultures and language. I also like the English accent of the narrator.

Tilly’s Petting Farm app is $1.99 in the App Store for iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.

I like how the narrator speaks in complete sentences, and that it really requires the child to listen. I feel like my two and a half year old daughter will open an app and just tap away, but this app forces her to stop, listen, and comprehend what is being said to her.

The app works like this: There are four different areas on the farm to learn about. When you select a scene, you can select the hand symbol to tap-and-learn about what’s going on in the scene, and then you can select the magnifying glass to enter a question-and-answer(tap) session. There are over 300 sentences spoken in the app, so your child won’t run through the app quickly.

This app isn’t one you can just toss over to your child under age 5 and expect them to play around with and learn on their own. You’ll have to show them how to go through the tap-and-learn phase (by selecting the hand symbol) then go to the question- and-answer phase (with magnifying glass). You’ll especially need to be around for assistance when questions come up that may be difficult for young children to answer like “where is the dried grass?” (hay).

Overall, I like the app, and my daughter does as well. I think it is worth the $1.99 price.

Get the app now

Not Just Any Ole Coloring Book App – Coloring Book Color Mix HD App

The Coloring Book Color Mix HD App by Eightfold Education, LLC adds a new level of creativity and imagination to digital coloring books and drawing apps. This app for iPhone and iPad costs only $1.99, and allows your child to create their own colors to draw on different types of backgrounds, color-in characters, connect the dots sheets, and doodle on photos from an album on your device.

The app works like this:

Choose a sheet in which you would like to draw or color. Next, tap the paints and brush image in the bottom left-hand corner.

Here’s where the creative juices start flowing. Drag a color from the palette and drop it in one of your four color choices on the left to create a new color. Use the sponge in the middle to drag to the four color palettes on the left to change out a color. Tap the question mark to listen to  audible directions if you get stuck.

Once you have the four unique colors of your desire, click the green check mark and go back to your drawing. Use your finger to draw, or if using a color-in sheet, just tap the area you wish to color, and it fills it in for you.

Other nifty features include (and can be found on the right-hand toolbar) taking pictures of your creation to save on your device, delete the image and start fresh, turn background music on or off, and undo.

I really enjoy watching my 2 1/2 year old daughter play around with this app, and I think she is understanding how mixing colors can create new ones. It’s a great new challenge for her since she knows her way around coloring and drawing apps already on my iPhone. Her creation is to the right 🙂

Get the app now

Learn more about Eightfold Education, LLC

Send Your Toddler/Preschooler to Fish School – Learning App

Welcome to Fish School
Do you remember the scene from Finding Nemo,  when Nemo’s father and his companion Dori are asking questions to a school of fish trying to find Nemo? All of these fish take shape to illustrate what they are talking about, like an arrow, or take the shape of Nemo’s father, mocking him with a sad face. Well, this app takes that funny idea, and turns it into a fun, bright, and musical learning experience for your toddler or preschooler.
Let your child explore numbers, letters, shapes, colors, and thinking exercises with the help of schools of fish as their teachers. The Fish School app is $1.99  app created by Duck Duck Moose for the iPhone and iPad is clever with presenting the fundamentals in a fun way. The app also challenges toddlers and preschoolers with critical thinking exercises, just right for them. For example, your child is posed with a question of selecting which fish doesn’t belong in the school of fish, or your child will be challenged with a memory game, where they have to match up the same fish.
Classical music is played throughout the app, which always lets me know that when my 2 year old grabs my iPhone, she’s gone to fish school. In fact, it’s now the first app she goes to when she has her sticky fingers on my phone.

Get the app now

Learning Letters: Toddler’s First Spelling App

FirstWords: Animals App

Your toddler always grabbing for you phone? Why not keep their fingers occupied while engaging him/her with a great app teaching them letters and forming words?

I love the FirstWords: Animals app for iPhone, iPod, and iPad. My two year old daughter absolutely loves it. She loves the animals, and I love that she is learning letters and how letters make up words.

The app basically works like this; there is an image of an animal, and the animal word is spoken. A jumble of the letters that make up the word are below it. Your child touches one of the letters in the jumble and drags it  up to the boxes to match it up to the same letter. The app also has a “magnetic” feature about it, so when your child drags the letter close to it’s place, it automatically snatches the letter in correct position in the word. Your child can also touch the letter in the box, which triggers a hint by “shaking” the letter in the jumble below as another method of playing the game. This feature can also be turned off for older kids needing more of a challenge, and you can also change the settings to how long you want the words to be, and adjust difficulty levels. Once the word is completely spelled, the speaker audibly spells out the word for further reinforcement, followed by a little animation of the animal.

Only after a few demonstrations on my part, did my daughter pick up on the concept of dragging the letter to it’s match. It’s really an easy app to introduce to your toddler to get their mind thinking about spelling. Right now we are working on selecting the letters from left to right in order.

There are several different kinds of FirstWords apps, like a Spanish version, the Deluxe, etc., so go with the one that you think your child will enjoy the best. There is also a free sampler of this app, if you want to try it out before purchasing it. The app is $1.99, and it comes with 39 animals/words.

Get the app now