Eric & Bruce Travel to Britain- Review




iPhone Screenshot 1

What we love…

Toddler friendly, cute colorful graphics, fun interactions

What we’d love to see…

More educational value, more diversity in parts of Britain included

Summary

Eric & Bruce visit Britain is a fun interactive app that will appeal most to toddlers and pre-schoolers. It features many famous British sites and people but misses the opportunity to teach a little about them.

Our Rating

Eric&Bruce Travel To BritainEric & Bruce Travel to Britain is the first in a planned series of apps for toddlers and preschoolers from Beijing- based developer Eric & Bruce Technology Ltd. Eric is a young boy and Bruce is his puppy and faithful travel companion. The app is child-friendly with no adverts or in-app purchases, website and social media links are in a locked parents area (accessed by pressing and holding). Music and sound effects can be independently turned off in the parents area. In this app they visit some of the most famous sights of Great Britain.

As the app opens Eric is slowly peddling his bike through the streets of London with Bruce following behind. The child can explore the app at their own pace, if they do nothing Bruce keeps slowly moving along, tapping on Bruce changes his mode of transport- he can also ride a horse or fly Harry Potter- style on a broomstick. Swiping forward will speed Bruce up, swiping backwards will change his direction. There are lots of hidden animations to find including: tapping on a cloud to start rain falling, traditional red pillar boxes which will spit out letters if tapped, Tower Bridge will raise to let ships pass, and touching Big Ben will cause it to strike 3 o’clock. As well as famous sights the app also features many iconic British figures such as the Beatles crossing Abbey Road, Sherlock Holmes & Dr Watson in Baker Street, and the Royal Family.  The Queen will change outfits if tapped, and her royal corgis will perform tricks; the younger Royals aren’t left out either with Kate Duchess of Cambridge and Princes William and George popping up to give the Royal Wave.

iPhone Screenshot 4

There are 4 mini-games to find, each marked by a star, in each game the child plays as long as they wish, then taps the return button to get back to the rest of the app. The games are:

Popping Balloons

This is at the London Eye – Bruce and Eric both gets balloons from a balloon seller then more and more balloons float across the screen. Tapping on balloons pops them, and there is no keeping score or penalty for missing balloons.

Afternoon Tea

Eric and a friend are having tea at a sidewalk table outside a Fish and Chip Shop. The child can feed them cupcakes from a never-ending supply and Bruce is waiting patiently under the table to receive any cupcakes that come his way too. It is a little confusing having them drink tea and eat cupcakes outside a Fish and Chip Shop – it would seem more logical for them to be outside a Tea Shop having tea and cakes, or eating fish and chips by the Fish and Chip Shop.

iPhone Screenshot 5

Irish Dancing

Eric and Bruce are Irish dancing with a Leprechaun, tapping them will change their dance moves. The location of this game seems a little geographically confused – they are dancing near Stonehenge and Westminster Abby, both of which are in England. Ireland is not actually part of Great Britain (although Northern Ireland is in the United Kingdom), so Irish Dancing seems a little out of place in an app about Britain. If the app was instead Eric and Bruce travel to the British Isles, Ireland could be included, but then it would be nice to see Irish dancing performed in front of a famous Irish sight such as the Devil’s Causeway or Blarney Castle instead of in England.

A New Friend

Eric and Bruce have found a new friend- another dog to play with! Bruce will throw the ball and both dogs will rush to fetch it and the new friend will even dig up a bone to share with Bruce.

Overall

The app has bright, colorful cartoon-like graphics that will appeal to young children. It allows open-ended play and exploration and is easy to operate. I think toddlers and pre-schoolers will enjoy exploring it and finding the hidden interactions.

As a native Brit myself I was a little disappointed the app didn’t take the opportunity to teach children a little about the places and people in the app. I’d love to see the addition of an interactive map that you could access from anywhere in the app that would show the locations of the various sights and tell a little about them. Similarly it would be nice to have a way that children could learn who the various people are. As it is an app designed for young children this doesn’t need to be in great detail, but as part of a series of travel apps, it is a great opportunity to teach children a little about each of the places Eric & Bruce visit. Apart from Loch Ness all the other sights included are in the South of England (mainly in London) so it would be nice to also see other parts of Britain represented- maybe Caerphilly Castle, or the Severn Bridge, or Edinburgh Castle or Fountains Abbey or Hadrian’s Wall ?

Overall, Eric & Bruce visit Britain is a fun, bright, colorful, interactive app that will appeal most to toddlers and pre-schoolers. It features many famous British sights and people but I feel it misses an opportunity to teach children a little about them.


Eric&Bruce Travel To Britain – Eric&Bruce Technology Ltd.

Eric & Bruce Travel To Britain Eric & Bruce Travel To Britain by Eric&Bruce Technology Ltd.

Price: $FREE

"There is no doubt that this app is one full of amazing images and interactive bits that will keep children entertained for hours." - BestAppsForKids

"It’s simple and clean with lots of action.

NOTE: A fee was received to expedite this review to the top of our waiting list but this payment has not influenced the objectivity of the review and all opinions have been offered honestly.

 

Mary is originally from England but now lives in California with her husband, dog, cat and three children. Mary and her family love Apple products and own an iPad2, iPad3, iPad Mini, iTouch, iPhone5 and several MacBook Pros. They also love cub scouts, skiing, camping and hiking. The family iPads are also used for therapy for their daughters Apraxia (speech disorder).



Pacca Alpaca by Anamil Tech Limited – Review



What we love…

variety of languages, mini games and ability to understand the different animals.  My son loved the sand paintings

What we’d love to see…

more information about Australia including additional types of animals, history, culture, weather

Summary

Overall, this is a fun app which engages children from preschool through early elementary school and could be used as a supplement in education to help children understand Australia compared to their country.

Our Rating

Pacca Alpaca Pacca Alpaca by Anamil Tech Limited is a universal app for iOS designed for preschoolers and early elementary aged children as an Alpaca adventures through Australia.  The app includes words in Arabic, English, French, Spanish and Mandarin and allows children to learn a variety of new words as they adventure through the country.  There are a variety of scenes within the app that include: bush, city, beach and as you complete each one you earn a “token” souvenir for the carousel showing you have completed your adventure.

I liked the different areas of the app along with the mini games which included: shapes, counting, color matching, spider shapes, dot painting, colors, BBQ counting, dot painting at more.  Many of the activities were repeated in each of the different scenes just with a twist – for example the Koala counting game was in the bush while the city had a boat building game.  As you went on you helped Pacca take bath’s and stay clean throughout the app by brushing teeth, brushing hair and more.  I used the app to help my son understand that different countries have different animals.    My son loved the dot coloring game because it allowed him to make a unique number of sand paintings and would purposely close the app so he could start over making them again after he had completed them.

In terms of enhancements, it would be nice to “ride” the carousel when you have completed the app rather than just spinning it with your finger.  Also after completing all of the worlds you are just brought back to the main screen with the items – and the carousel flies away. It would be nice to be able to tap on each of the icons or even when you earn the icon to learn more about what it is and why it is important to Australia.  I would also like to see additional animals form Australia including Kangaroos, Dingo, Platapus and more.  It would also be nice to learn a little about each of the settings to provide information about the culture in the city or the beach for example as well as the history and climate of Australia. I grew up with an Australian Queensland Heeler and had been hoping one might make an appearance in the app as well since I had told my son about them and how unique they were in the United States.

Overall, this is a fun app which engages children from preschool through early elementary school and could be used as a supplement in education to help children understand Australia.  Since there are no external links or in-app purchases it is one that children can complete on their own, but would benefit from an adult helping them understand the country as well as trialing the different languages.

Pacca Alpaca

Pacca Alpaca
Pacca Alpaca
by Anamil Tech Limited

Category: Education, Adventure, Games, Family
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone3GS-iPhone-3GS, iPhone4-iPhone4, iPodTouchFourthGen-iPodTouchFourthGen, iPad2Wifi-iPad2Wifi, iPad23G-iPad23G, iPhone4S-iPhone4S, iPadThirdGen-iPadThirdGen, iPadThirdGen4G-iPadThirdGen4G, iPhone5-iPhone5, iPodTouchFifthGen-iPodTouchFifthGen, iPadFourthGen-iPadFourthGen, iPadFourthGen4G-iPadFourthGen4G, iPadMini-iPadMini, iPadMini4G-iPadMini4G, iPhone5c-iPhone5c, iPhone5s-iPhone5s, iPadAir-iPadAir, iPadAirCellular-iPadAirCellular, iPadMiniRetina-iPadMiniRetina, iPadMiniRetinaCellular-iPadMiniRetinaCellular, iPhone6-iPhone6, iPhone6Plus-iPhone6Plus, iPadAir2-iPadAir2, iPadAir2Cellular-iPadAir2Cellular, iPadMini3-iPadMini3, iPadMini3Cellular-iPadMini3Cellular, iPodTouchSixthGen-iPodTouchSixthGen, iPhone6s-iPhone6s, iPhone6sPlus-iPhone6sPlus, iPadMini4-iPadMini4, iPadMini4Cellular-iPadMini4Cellular, iPadPro-iPadPro, iPadProCellular-iPadProCellular, iPadPro97-iPadPro97, iPadPro97Cellular-iPadPro97Cellular, iPhoneSE-iPhoneSE, iPhone7-iPhone7, iPhone7Plus-iPhone7Plus, iPad611-iPad611, iPad612-iPad612, iPad71-iPad71, iPad72-iPad72, iPad73-iPad73, iPad74-iPad74, iPhone8-iPhone8, iPhone8Plus-iPhone8Plus, iPhoneX-iPhoneX, iPad75-iPad75, iPad76-iPad76
Size: 167.06 MB

$0.99USD

Screenshots
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Screenshots for iPad
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NOTE: A fee was received to expedite this review to the top of our waiting list but this payment has not influenced the objectivity of the review and all opinions have been offered honestly.

Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her two sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. My older son loves technology and loves testing out the “latest and newest” apps and tech. I love sharing information about apps and products with others to help them make decisions without feeling overwhelmed with all of the choices.



Where Are We? Learning Library Collection (Dr. Seuss/Cat in the Hat) by Oceanhouse Media – Review and Giveaway



What we love…

Highly educational and informative content, text highlighting, tappable words and objects.

What we’d love to see…

The text and pictures/animations match when it talks about the earth rotating on its axis.

Summary

A terrific set of four books that will not only takes children on a journey to space, the deserts, and the North and South Poles but also gives them everything they need to become excellent map readers and cartographers.

Our Rating

Little explorers searching for new adventures will find what they are looking for in Oceanhouse Media’s Where Are We? Collection. In this collection are four books from The Cat In The Hat’s Learning Library covering a variety of subjects including astronomy, science and geography: There’s No Place Like Space, Why Oh Why Are Deserts Dry?, Ice Is Nice and There’s A Map In My Lap.

In There’s No Place Like Space, little explorers will take a flight out into the Solar System. Starting with Mercury, they will visit all the planets and discover features that make them unique from each other. They will also be taking a closer look at the stars, the sun, the moon and constellations. Coming down from an out-of-this-world experience is not easy but another exciting adventure awaits them when they return to Earth.

In Why Oh Why Are Deserts Dry?, little explorers will travel to some of the well-known deserts of the world including the Sonoran Desert, the Nambi Desert, the Sahara Desert, the Mojave Desert, the Gobi Desert and the Arctic Desert. As they travel to each of the deserts, they will learn not only about why deserts are dry but also about the different plants and animals that live there and how they are able to survive in such harsh conditions. They will also learn about Nomads, what they wear and how they live. They may be surprised to learn that deserts can either be hot and dry like the Mojave and Sahara deserts or cold and dry like the Gobi and Arctic deserts. They will also learn various desert terms and features such as mirage, oasis, and dunes.

After their trip to the cold deserts, our little explorers will travel to the North Pole and the South Pole in Ice Is Nice. The North Pole, they will discover, is actually located in the Arctic Ocean, not on land. They will learn that in the North Pole, there are 6 months of long winter nights and 4 months of warm weather when the sun shines all day and all night. They will learn about the people and animals that live there and how they adapt to the cold weather. They will then go to the opposite side of the world and find out that while the North Pole is cold; the South Pole is even colder. Unlike the North Pole which is in water, the South Pole is on land. In the South Pole, little explorers will learn all about the different types of penguins that live there: the Emperor, the Chinstrap, the Adelie, the Gentoos and the Rockhoppers. In their travels to the North and South poles, they will also learn about the Earth’s axis, its rotation and its revolution. They will also learn a little about climate changes, which can open up to a discussion on global warming.

As our explorers head back to the comforts of home, they will be given the most valuable tool a little explorer needs in There’s A Map In My Lap. They will learn about all kinds of maps like globes, atlases, marine maps and topographic maps. They will quickly become expert map readers and cartographers as they learn about legends, longitude lines, latitude lines and scales. Soon they will be planning their own adventures, lots and lots of great adventures!

Once again Oceanhouse Media has put together another fantastic set of four books that is full of eye catching graphics and interactive objects. They also all have the features we have come to love in Oceanhouse Media books such as text highlighting, tappable words/objects and voice recording. The only thing I would like to see changed is the way they show the earh’s rotation. In Ice Is Nice, there is a page that reads: “Earth spins on its axis while circling the sun” and while it shows the earth circling the sun, it does not show the Earth rotating on its axis. It would be better if it rotates as the text says it does.

I highly recommend this app to parents and teachers of little explorers. Parents and teachers will love the educational value of this collection of books and little explorers will enjoy the adventures that await them.

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Where Are We? Learning Library Collection (Dr. Seuss/Cat in the Hat) – Oceanhouse Media

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Requirements: Compatible with
Size: 0 MB

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Fides and her husband have been married for 16 years. They homeschool their 4 children: two amazing sons and two beautiful daughters. Fides likes to walk and jog outdoors everyday and has as very difficult time resisting a slice of paradise cake.



Grandpa In Space by Fairlady Media – Review & Giveaway



iPhone Screenshot 5

What we love…

fun spaced theme educational app that practices a wide variety of skills and uses video’s as a reward for successfully completing the “missions”

What we’d love to see…

parental dashboard to show which skills your child has worked on as well as missions completed, help or hint button for more complicated mini games

Summary

Fun space themed app which practices a variety of skills via mini games that can be customized to your child’s specific skill level

Our Rating

Grandpa In SpaceGrandpa in Space is an out of this world intergalactic space adventure for iOS by Fairlady Media featuring nine destinations in the solar system with 10 mini games and 18 space themed video’s.  This app features ten mini games including: shape lander, memory match, build a rocket, alien addition, clean up the ship, sort by height, fix the satellite, rhyme race, asteroid blaster, and opposites.  Each mini game features a specific educational skill ranging from counting, sorting, lining up objects by height (tallest to shortest), matching, listening to sounds, and landing objects.  Skills practiced in the app include: fine motor, math, sorting, reading, building and more.  The app is targeted at children in early elementary school.  The app allows you to customize the app based on your child’s skill level so that you can “turn off” the harder games that your child may not have mastered the skills for as well as turning on and off the music. It is designed for children from age five to eight although I think some of the higher level games could appeal to children older than eight especially if they were interested in the solar system.

iPhone Screenshot 4Within the app after you click “play” you choose a planet for your mission.  Once you select a planet, you see a splash screen which tells you basic facts about the planet and then allows you to move on to a rocket building game.   After building the rocket, you go off into space and then play a variety of mini games to successfully complete the mission.

My son loved the videos in the app as he loves anything that has to do with space.  We used it as an opportunity to practice the names of the planets as well as practicing the various mini games contained within.  He enjoyed the spaceship game which was the precursor to each planet activity through the galaxy.  After completing the activity for the planet or “mission” you earn a souvenir for the trip.

In terms of improvements, my son did hit the “menu” button several times in the mini games by accident as it is somewhat close to the parts especially in the rocket ship game which was the first part of any of the mini games to bring you to the specific planet.    In the rocket ship game he wanted to be able to steer the rocket ship while it traveled to the next mini game which in this most recent case was rhyming.  It would also be nice while piloting the rocket ship if there was an avatar to show your child in the ship as well.  A “hint” function might be helpful for some of the more complex games especially if your child is not familiar with the words or what it means.  It might also be nice to have a box to hold the souvenirs earned from each of the planets which are lost when you close out of the app. It would also be nice to see a parental dashboard that shows which games your child has played and how long it took them to successfully achieve the mission.

The app contains a parental gate which requires you to enter a series of numbers.  Behind the gate there are links to social media, iTunes and email.  In addition, there is a settings menu which allows you to customize the app and turn on and off specific mini games based on your child’s skill level.  Fairlady Media does not collect any personal information within the applications and complies with the Children’s Online Privacy Act.

Overall, this app provided lots of intergalactic fun for my kindergartener once I was able to customize it to his skill level.  The variety of skills learned in the app including counting, opposites, addition, sorting/categorizing, memory, as well as lots of great space vocabulary.

Grandpa In Space
Grandpa In Space
by Fairlady Media

Category: Education, Games, Family
Requirements: Compatible with iPad2Wifi-iPad2Wifi, iPad23G-iPad23G, iPhone4S-iPhone4S, iPadThirdGen-iPadThirdGen, iPadThirdGen4G-iPadThirdGen4G, iPhone5-iPhone5, iPodTouchFifthGen-iPodTouchFifthGen, iPadFourthGen-iPadFourthGen, iPadFourthGen4G-iPadFourthGen4G, iPadMini-iPadMini, iPadMini4G-iPadMini4G, iPhone5c-iPhone5c, iPhone5s-iPhone5s, iPadAir-iPadAir, iPadAirCellular-iPadAirCellular, iPadMiniRetina-iPadMiniRetina, iPadMiniRetinaCellular-iPadMiniRetinaCellular, iPhone6-iPhone6, iPhone6Plus-iPhone6Plus, iPadAir2-iPadAir2, iPadAir2Cellular-iPadAir2Cellular, iPadMini3-iPadMini3, iPadMini3Cellular-iPadMini3Cellular, iPodTouchSixthGen-iPodTouchSixthGen, iPhone6s-iPhone6s, iPhone6sPlus-iPhone6sPlus, iPadMini4-iPadMini4, iPadMini4Cellular-iPadMini4Cellular, iPadPro-iPadPro, iPadProCellular-iPadProCellular, iPadPro97-iPadPro97, iPadPro97Cellular-iPadPro97Cellular, iPhoneSE-iPhoneSE, iPhone7-iPhone7, iPhone7Plus-iPhone7Plus, iPad611-iPad611, iPad612-iPad612, iPad71-iPad71, iPad72-iPad72, iPad73-iPad73, iPad74-iPad74, iPhone8-iPhone8, iPhone8Plus-iPhone8Plus, iPhoneX-iPhoneX, iPad75-iPad75, iPad76-iPad76
Size: 103.92 MB

$2.99USD

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Screenshots for iPad
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NOTE: A fee was received to expedite this review to the top of our waiting list but this payment has not influenced the objectivity of the review and all opinions have been offered honestly.

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Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her two sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. My older son loves technology and loves testing out the “latest and newest” apps and tech. I love sharing information about apps and products with others to help them make decisions without feeling overwhelmed with all of the choices.

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