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CTR May 2014: Let’s Go Geocaching

Children’s Technology Review May 2014 Volume 22, No. 5, Issue 170   Literacy Theory Meets iPads In the image below, literacy researcher William Teale sees a yet -to-be-released app ...
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In Defense of Edutainment: A 1998 Challenge to Seymour Papert

April 17, 2014. This week I had the pleasure of visiting Marina Bers at Tufts University; where I saw an early version of ScratchJr running on an iPad. Bers is a former student of ...
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Orbotix Announces SPRK for Schools

Colorado based toy maker Orbotix today announced the launch of SPRK (pronounced spark), a curriculum designed to appeal to educators.  Content includes apps like Draw-N-Drive; one ...
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Apple’s Letter to Parents About In-App Purchases

On April 9, 2014, I received the following email from Apple’s iTunes.  It represents a much improved effort by Apple in the past 12 months to take care of families and parents. How ...
monster

Where’s My Monster?

Review Excerpt: Where’s My Monster is the second release from Martin Hughes (see also Monster’s Socks, CTR Editor’s Choice, July 2012). The narrative is drawn from ...
caterpillar

Very Hungry Caterpillar & Friends, The: Play & Explore

Review Excerpt: If there was an award for the world’s most beautiful early math workbook, it might very well go to this app. This is the first time the art of Eric Carle has been ...
tynker

Tynker

Review Excerpt: Inspired from MIT’s famous programming language (currently Scratch 2.0), Tynker is a set of self-paced challenges and tutorials designed to introduce the basic ...
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Sneak a Snack HD

Review Excerpt: This app was one of the nice discoveries of the BolognaRagazzi Digital Judging. Sneak a Snack, an English/French title designed in Canada, made the top 20 list for good ...
slice

Slice Fractions

Review Excerpt: Combine “Cut the Rope” style problem solving with a side scrolling venue that gets progressively harder, and you get the idea of Slice Fractions — ...
rollingpea

Rolling Pea

Review Excerpt: This 29 screen animated storybook tells the story of a boy with an unusual name (Rolling Pea) who must try to rescue his brothers and sisters from an evil dragon. The ...
fashion

Pretty Fabulous Fashion Activity

Review Excerpt: Sixteen coloring and problem solving activities provide a nice variety of fashion-themed activities, despite being a bit clumsy at points. See also Meerkat Puzzles for ...
nutjob

Nut Job, The (The Official App for the Movie)

Review Excerpt: The Nut Job movie comes to an app, with four activities and a narrated page-by-page storybook. In the story, you join Surly the squirrel as he helps the squirrels get ...
musicsuper

Music Superheroes – Learn Music While Having Fun

Review Excerpt: Music teachers take note (pun intended). These five, carefully leveled,  music-related games help younger children (preschool and early elementary) discover tempo, ...
monsterabc

Monster ABC – Learn With The Little Monsters

Review Excerpt: This is a phonics drill app that asks you to match pictures to initial sounds. Successful answers are rewarded with interesting monsters — the more words you unlock, ...
science

Meet Science: Magnetism and Electricity

Review Excerpt: Best described as a science textbook on a tablet, Meet Science: Magnetism and Electricity (aka Meet Science 1) is the first of a series from NCSoft’s iActionBook ...
meerkat

Meerkat Puzzles

Review Excerpt: Fifteen self-correcting, rainy day puzzles await in a single app, offering both variety and some tried-and-true problem solving opportunities. You catch and count bats, ...
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Dr. Panda’s Restaurant 2

Review Excerpt: This cooking simulation follows last year’s Dr. Panda’s Restaurant. You become the cook in this island restaurant, trying to feed an endless flow of new ...
cursive

Cursive Writing Wizard – Trace Letters and Words

Review Excerpt: This app turns your iPad into a highly customizable cursive writing tutorial that takes up where Writing Wizard (CTR, Sept 13) leaves off. A suite of parent/teacher ...
count10

Count up to Ten: Learn Numbers With Montessori

Review Excerpt: This collection of leveled activities includes counting, 1 to 1 correspondence, a numeral tracing activity and an augmented reality activity, with a cloud-based reward ...
colorcars

Coloring Book: Cars and Trucks for Kids!

Review Excerpt: This coloring book app offers three free black line images of cars, and teases children with locked images of others. The age gate isn’t effective, or honest. ...
10fingers

10 Fingers +

Review Excerpt: Counting with your fingers comes naturally for most children (and adults), and it certainly gives the general concept of “base ten” a nice grounding. The ...
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CTR April 2014: Slice Fractions, Research Questions and Lessons in AppCraft

Children’s Technology Review April 2014 Volume 22, No. 4, Issue 169  Welcome to April 2014 Your April CTR (sent to paid subscribers) will skim you through some noteworthy apps, ...
petdoctor

Toca Pet Doctor

Review Excerpt: Ideal as a child’s first app, Toca Pet Doctor starts with a waiting room full of 15 critters, each with a problem. The worm is tangled into a knot, the cat has ...
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Things That Go – Touch, Look, Listen

Review Excerpt: The third title in StoryToys’ series of visual dictionaries, Things That Go,  lets children discover 55 vehicles, grouped into 11 categories like trucks, diggers, ...
creation

The Story of Creation

Review Excerpt: A bible story comes to life, in the context of a solid “Living Book” shell. Content consists of ten (10) fully animated pages, touch and hear text that is ...
circus

Shiny Circus

Review Excerpt: As a former elementary teacher, I love to find apps like this one. In the story, the Shiny Circus has come to town and Charlie, Alice and Ralph (three animals) are going ...
shapeart

Shape Arts: Geometry Creations

Review Excerpt: Every good early elementary classroom has tangram puzzles. This app takes the idea up a notch, with a nice set of geometric creatures; each made from seven shapes. You ...
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Rules of Summer

Review Excerpt: Eighteen paintings are first presented by a rule, such as “never leave a red sock on the clothesline.” Why? Because it might attract a giant red rabbit. ...
redinbed

Red in Bed

Review Excerpt: In the story, the rainbow wakes up in the morning and goes out to color the world in its own hues. When Red feels sick, the other colors help by taking up some of Red’s ...
pierre

Pierre et le Loup (Peter and the Wolf)

Review Excerpt: The worlds of animation, film and interactive media collide in this orchestral blend of games and videos, based on Peter and the Wolf by Sergueï Prokofiev. Content ...
disguises

PANGO Disguises

Review Excerpt: Part of the Pango series, this app lets you control story elements in five short adventures, each featuring Pango the raccoon. Each story element is introduced through ...
nancydrew

Nancy Drew: Ghost of Thornton Hall

Review Excerpt: Nancy Drew has appeared in books, movies and PC / Mac platforms. This app marks her debut on tablets (iPad, Kindle and Android). SIn the first of the series, Ghost of ...
mathmuseum

Mystery Math Museum

Review Excerpt: This sequel to Mystery Math Town (4.2 stars, CTR May 2013) features a new town with eight museums, each with a different theme and set of characters. Your mission is ...
mathbattle

Medieval Math Battle

Review Excerpt: This mashup of violence, gender bias and math facts is designed to make math fact practice fun. For some children it just might work. The story puts a young boy (the ...
mpocean

MarcoPolo Ocean

Review Excerpt: Turn your iPad into an ocean-sized aquarium, that you construct — one fish, shell or boat at a time.  Each item comes with a short factual description that is ...
love

Love, The App

Review Excerpt:  The original book, published fifty years ago in 1964 in France, was originally described as a colored graphic poem, complete with holes in the paper. Those holes have ...
leogmovie

LEGO Movie Videogame, The

Review Excerpt: Like the movie, you become Emmet — the ordinary, rule-following citizen who is mistakenly identified as the most extraordinary person and the key to saving the ...
horseshow

If I Ran the Horse Show

Review Excerpt: This 29 screen “book app” lets you join the Cat in the Hat, as he visits a horse show and explores the horse related vocabulary that is surprisingly un-watered ...
forza

Forza Motorsport 5

Review Excerpt: Like the cars it lets you drive, Forza Motorsport 5 is an elegant mix of power and beauty. Instead of racing against computer controlled opponents, you race against ...
fingerpaint

FingerPaint Duel

Review Excerpt: The idea is to race to see who can most accurately fill in a target shape. You start with a simple circle, and end with a rather complicated picture of an animal. It ...

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