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.

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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 🙂

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Learn more about Eightfold Education, LLC

Tozzle App – Toddler Puzzles

I love it when my  2.5  year old daughter sits down and does a puzzle. I can see the satisfaction it brings her when she successfully inserts each piece to its proper place, and her “oh yeah, I did it,” dance when she completes the entire thing. Maybe that’s why I’m so gaga over the Tozzle Puzzle App by nodeflexion.com, oh yeah, and most importantly my daughter is gaga over it too.

The Tozzle App (iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch) comes in a Free Lite version, but the

$1.99 you spend on the full version is definitely more than worth the price. The app is great in the fact that not only is it fun and challenging, but there are 39 puzzles in all, with increasing difficulty as your child completes a puzzle and slides over to the next one. Also, new puzzles are added with app updates, so the app never gets boring, although my daughter will do the same puzzle over and over again anyway.
The puzzles work like this; the puzzle piece shown in-color in the upper-right hand corner needs to be inserted in one of the empty slots or shadows. If your child struggles with placing the piece in its correct place after

3 failed attempts, the app displays a green arrow that directs your child where to go, with a circle target that helps snap it into place.

The app is colorful, fun, has great sound effects, and cheerful music (my daughter loves to dance and celebrate with the music when she completes a puzzle). Get this app for your toddler. Seriously, get it.

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Great App to Filter the Crap from YouTube – tinyTube

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Don’t you hate it when your child is watching his/her favorite video via YouTube on your iPhone or iPad, and you accidentally select a video that some loser has decided to edit themselves by inserting curse words or adding snippets of their own immature animation? Since when did Dora get such a potty mouth? Then you frantically snatch your phone from your child (usually resulting in a cry of frustration), and shut off the video. I’ve been there a few times, but thankfully, here is a great app to keep this from happening again – the tinyTube app.

The tinyTube app works like this: first use your existing YouTube account or create a new one to be used just for your kids’ videos. Then, on your account, save the kid-friendly videos to your favorites. Next, select the tinyTube app on your device, and press refresh at the top. The app automatically takes the videos from your favorites list, and displays them in the app. Now all your child needs to do is learn to select the tinyTube app icon instead of YouTube (I moved this app icon right next to the YouTube app to help). Voila, no stressing about Calliou suddenly becoming violent or your child’s favorite character coming upon an unfortunate death.

The app is only $.99 and I feel well worth it.

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Build a Bug Workshop?… Create Cute Bugs With Your Toddler

If you’re like me, bugs make you a little squeamish…but with this cute app for your iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad,  bugs are adorable and…creative.

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The Bug Builder app by Tickle Tap Apps is full of bright colors, charming music, and fun sound effects. Only $1.99, and it is a very simple concept; in fact when I purchased the app, I was thinking that you could choose what kind of eyes the bug would have, antenna, legs, etc., and was a little disappointed at just how simple it really was.

I later showed the app to my two year old daughter however, and realized that this simplicity is perfect for toddlers (which we all know have shorter attention spans). Toddlers love creating things, but don’t want to be patient and go through a lot of steps and details to get to their final product. Duh mom! The app developers recommend this app for children ages 3-5, though I’d say some two year olds can grasp this app also.

Let me explain this simple concept: first you choose from 4 different designs for the body of your bug. Then you choose from several different colors to draw on your bug. Next you tap the smiley bug face in the top right-hand corner, and your design is placed in an “egg”. Now it is your job to hatch it! You tap on the egg six times, and voila, your bug creation is hatched with a face, wings, antenna, legs, and whatever else they may have. Then you can click on the camera image in the top right-hand corner, and take a picture of your bug, which is saved in your photos section on your device. Goodness, I probably have at least 20 bugs in my phone! What can I say, my daughter loves this app! She laughs so hard when her bug hatches and she sees what crazy creation she’s made.

What’s also great is that there are many different bug features the app adds onto your  bug, so you’re sure to have a different-looking bug each time!

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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.

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