Pacca Alpaca – Travel Playtime: fun activities for kids by Anamil Tech Limited – Review and Giveaway

Pacca Alpaca – Travel Playtime: fun activities for kids by Anamil Tech Limited – Review and Giveaway



screen pacca alpaca

Pacca Alpaca – Travel Playtime: fun activities for kids is the second in a series of apps following Pacca Alpaca on his travels around the globe. While the first app explored Australia, this new app takes your preschooler to 23 different countries and learn about the iconic symbols associated with these countries.

What we love…

Exposure to the cultures and important features of various countries.

What we’d love to see…

More information about the national treasures and ability to save creative works.

Summary

A cute and oolorful app that brings your child around the world learning about the famous icons and flags of different countries through 50 early learning activities.

Our Rating

The app opens with a cute animation of Pacca Alpaca traveling across continents on his magical carousel and when it lands, your child is invited to choose an early learning activity from 50 available on the spinning carousel. Each activity takes your child to a new place and highlights an interesting feature of that country.

For each of the 23 countries that your child will travel to, he/she could be searching for the national animal, piecing together one of the wonders of the world, building a national monument, connecting the dots to draw a historic landmark, making the national food with stickers, spotting the odd national flower, drawing a cultural landscape or playing hide and seek with fun iconic symbols. While there are lots (50 early learning activities) to do, each activity is short and complete on its own, which is perfect for the preschoolers’ short attention span. Even though there is no in-app saving function of the children’s creative works, you can always get round it by doing screenshots.

After completing an activity, your child will be shown the flag of the country and the country name will be announced at the same time. However, I feel that the flag appears too soon and wish that there is a little more time for the children to appreciate their completed work before the flag is shown.

I like the variety of country highlights included in this app. They are all very interesting, I just wish that the app would give the name of these features as well. My favorite country highlight has to be the music that is unique to each country and I hope to see more cultural characteristics like the costumes and festivals being included in future updates.

I love the multi-national and multi-cultural exposure that this app offers. The early learning activities are age-appropirate and the visuals are captivating. It is the perfect app for preschoolers to travel round the world discovering different countries and their cultures in a fun way!

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Pacca Alpaca – Travel Playtime: fun activities for kids

Pacca Alpaca - Travel Playtime: fun activities for kids Pacca Alpaca - Travel Playtime: fun activities for kids by Anamil Tech Limited
Category: Education, Games, Family, Educational
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone3GS-iPhone-3GS, iPadWifi-iPadWifi, iPad3G-iPad3G, iPodTouchThirdGen-iPodTouchThirdGen, 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
Size: 62.71 MB

$0.99USD

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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.

Grace was working in the fields of early childhood education and staff training before quitting to attend to her 4 children full time. She and her family live in Singapore, which is well known for her highly competitive education system.
 Fishing With Grandpa by Fairlady Media – Review & Giveaway

Fishing With Grandpa by Fairlady Media – Review & Giveaway



grandpa

What we love…

bright colors, realistic fishing game that incorporates educational elements like counting, spotting the difference, find an object and more

What we’d love to see…

the ability to change the number of puzzle pieces, the ability to tap on the “thought bubble” and have Grandpa tell us what he’s thinking again

Summary

Fun app designed to work on a number of skills with Grandpa that has a wide appeal to the audience.

Our Rating

Fishing With GrandpaFishing with Grandpa by Fairlady Media is an iOS app designed for preschoolers that focuses on a variety of skills including, object identification (find an object from a field), counting (find the groups of x fish) , find the treasure using the crab in the maze, putting together a six piece puzzle, spot the difference (look at the objects and determine which one is different), find everything that matches the description (find all the “green” fish), simple video’s to explain fishing and then the opportunity to pick a lure and cast a line and catch a fish which you reel in.  Once you catch the fish, they are measured and you pick the right number from the measuring tape and then add it to your “collection”.  It practices fine motor skills, early math skills, object identification and more.

This is a fun app designed for late preschool through early elementary school which features positive reinforcement (stars) when you complete an activity correctly.  I liked that it used realistic in showing colors with the fish as well as the action and movement of the app.  The narration is clear and easy to understand with Grandpa speaking in his patient voice telling us, please find x and encouraging kids even if they get the wrong answer.  The colors are bright and fun and help children truly understand what it is like to go fishing.

iPad Screenshot 2

In terms of future enhancements, I’d like to see the ability to change the number of puzzle pieces (perhaps range from a four piece puzzle to an eight piece puzzle), the ability to “row” grandpa’s boat as well as if you have trouble finding an object in the field the ability to tap on the “thought bubble” above Grandpa’s Head which currently just says an object like “hook” but it does not repeat if you either tap it or pick the wrong object.  Right now, the wrong object will disappear reducing the field , but it does not see, I want the fishing hook or I want my hat.  I’d also like especially for younger kids who don’t know how to read the ability to see the number of objects they are looking for.   My first grader also commented that he wanted to see an “end” to the maze not just the treasure as it gave him a better way to trace the direction for the crab as well as a spot for him to “sit” in the boat since it is currently filled with Grandpa’s gear.  He also noted, that Grandpa doesn’t have a life jacket – something we talk about a lot as we enjoy water based activities.  Personally, I’d also love to see a frog catching game as that was a fun part of going to the pond for me.

The app features a parental lock which allows the parent to choose which games are included in the app, they range from find the gear to fish groups, mazes, puzzles, reel it in, measurement and more as well as the ability to turn the music on and off.  There is also an advertising section for the other Fairlady Media apps which features a pop up video and advertising, but you can’t click beyond to email or access iTunes without entering in your year of birth.

Overall, this is a fun game aimed at the slightly older preschooler through early elementary aged child. The ability to choose from the ten different games as well as choosing which ones are most appropriate for your child means the app has wide appeal for kids and adults alike.  I even caught myself playing along as I enjoyed watching the video’s about the different fish as well as catching the different fish.  This is a great addition to the Fairlady Media Suite of apps featuring Grandma and Grandpa.  I can’t wait to see what comes next – perhaps a crafting with Grandma app?  Only time will tell!



Fishing With Grandpa Fishing With Grandpa by Fairlady Media

Price: $2.99 USD

Let’s go on a fishing adventure with Grandpa! Grab some gear, play underwater games, choose a lure, cast a line, hook and reel in a fish, and add new fish to your collection! Grandpa needs your help.

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Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. They have a variety of devices including an iPad, iPhone, and an iPod and is often found with a device! 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.
 My Little Pony – Cutie Mark Chronicles by Egmont Kids Media Digital A/S – Review

My Little Pony – Cutie Mark Chronicles by Egmont Kids Media Digital A/S – Review



iPad Screenshot 3

What we love…

entertaining and enjoyable, easy and challenging puzzles

What we’d love to see…

the ability to create male ponies and to turn the narration on and off

Summary

A fun app for My Little Pony fans that encourages creativity, reading, and puzzle solving skills.

Our Rating

My Little Pony - Cutie Mark ChroniclesDo you have a child like mine who loves My Little Pony?  If so, you may want to check out My Little Pony – Cutie Mark Chronicles by Egmont Kids Media Digital.  In this app, children design their own ponies, read stories with animated scenes, and solve puzzles with various difficulty levels.

When children open the app, they are immediately greeted by the same upbeat, colorful, and eye catching graphics, characters, sounds, and voices they have come to love in the animated TV series My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic.  They are also given a brief description of what a cutie mark is and how the ponies get them.

Children create their own pony by choosing a body type, eye shape, mane, and tail.  They can also change the color for each of the pony parts by moving the color graph slider to the color and shade of their choosing.  Children can take a picture of their pony and save it on the camera roll by clicking on the camera icon.

Next, children get to read about how each of the six main ponies (Fluttershy, Pinky Pie, Rainbow Dash, Rarity, Twilight Sparkle, and Apple Jack) got their cutie marks.  At the end of each book is a puzzle activity with 3 difficulty levels.  Some puzzles are simpler than others. The hardest ones involve placing a puzzle piece in the exact spot and at the exact angle it fits into.  Children earn a cutie mark for every puzzle they complete.  There are 18 cutie marks in all to collect and they can apply any one of the cutie marks they have collected to the pony they created.

Cutie Mark Chronicles is translated into 11 languages including English, Spanish, Italian, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, and Russian.  It also has child safety feature which requires adults to swipe a specific number of fingers in a given direction in order to access the parent section and external links.

My daughter loved and enjoyed Cutie Mark Chronicles.  She spent some time carefully designing her ponies and taking their photos.  She was entertained by the stories, lively narration, and animations.  She was fully engaged with the puzzles which helped her with observation skills, logical thinking skills, hand-eye coordination, and fine motor skills.  Her only complaint was being unable to create male ponies..  According to her, all the eyes are female eyes.  Also, she noticed that Apple Bloom’s mane was missing from the selection of mane styles.  I would also suggest adding an option to disable the narration so beginning readers and older children can read it on their own and practice their silent reading skills and read-aloud skills.

Overall, I found Cutie Mark Chronicles entertaining and engaging. I recommend it especially for My Little Pony fans ages 4 and up.



My Little Pony - Cutie Mark Chronicles My Little Pony - Cutie Mark Chronicles by Egmont Kids Media Digital A/S

Price: $3.99 USD

Design your own pony–listen to narrated stories and read along–Complete activities and earn your own cutie mark!

Join Twilight Sparkle, Rainbow Dash, Rarity, Fluttershy, Pinkie Pie, and Applejack.

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.
 Review of the Highlights: All About, Series of Apps and Print Books

Review of the Highlights: All About, Series of Apps and Print Books




iPad Screenshot 1

What we love…

Fun with a purpose- stories, games and activities that have children learning whilst having fun

What we’d love to see…

Ability to zoom in in hidden object pictures, more refined drawing tools, word highlighting in all the stories.

Summary

True to the Highlights theme the All About books and apps are fun with a purpose – children get to practice their observation skills, visual discrimination, fine motor skills, reading and listening skills whilst having fun with games and stories.

Our Rating

Highlights: All AboutHighlights Magazine for kids has been an American staple for generations. It is still available as a print magazine subscription and is now also available in digital form. The publishers of Highlights have recently released a series of books, in both print and digital versions that include all the Highlights favorite sections but concentrate on a theme- these are the Highlights “All About” books. There are All About books with seasonal themes- Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter, and also a variety of other themes including Camping, Pets and Transportation. The books are designed for children from 4+. I tested out the print and digital versions of the All About Spring and All About Fall books.

In digital format there is a free Highlights: All About app which includes the full version of All About Fall, other All About Books can be unlocked with in-app purchases- currently $1.99 per book. You can order the print versions from the Highlights website a set of 4 Season All About books is $19.98 and includes codes to  unlock the digital versions for free. The print books are 24 pages with soft covers and measure approximately 8″x 11″.

The app is divided into 3 sections:

Puzzles

There are a variety of activities in the puzzle section including 3 hidden object puzzles ( 1 is in the print book), a 12-piece jigsaw puzzle (based on the Haiku that is in the print book), maze, matching game and a “That’s Silly” picture. I did find that the hidden objects and silly things were harder to spot in the digital edition, in the print book they are a double page spread over two 8″x 11″ pages, and much smaller on the iPad or iPad mini screen. I would love to see the iPad’s capability used more here by adding the option to pinch and zoom so the child can explore the scene in more detail and more easily find the details than can be easy to miss on the smaller screen.

iPad Screenshot 3

Reading

There are 4 stories in the reading section.  Two stories are presented in a traditional multi-page story with narration and word highlighting as the story is read, one of these is in the print book the other is a bonus story. There is an option to record your own narration to accompany the stories. The third story is presented as a short animated video with the story narrated, the words show on the screen as the story is read but there is no word highlighting as it is read. The fourth story  appears in the print version with pictures replacing some of the words, in the digital version the child gets to first place the pictures in the right spots of the text (the words are written both under the picture and in the text box so they can match them). Once all the pictures in are in correct locations the story is read with word highlighting.

iPad Screenshot 2

Activities

This section includes 2 “Brain Play” videos, 3 pictures to draw and an action rhyme to act out.

The Brain Play ideas have a similar format to the ones in the print book, but different topics – each video shows a group of children answering a question e.g. “What Class Would You Like to See Offered in Schools?”

The action rhyme is a short poem with actions and is the same as the one in the print version. In a nice twist the digital version lets the child record a short video of themselves acting out the rhyme as they see and hear the rhyme and see a child acting it out.

With the drawing activities the child is given a background, some stickers and colored pencils and asked to draw a picture on a theme e.g. “what is your favorite activity in the fall?” Each of the 3 pictures has a different background. The drawing tools are very simple, it would be nice to see some extra features added such as different size pencil tips and the ability to re-size stickers.

iPad Screenshot 4

True to the Highlights theme the All About books and apps are fun with a purpose – children get to practice their observation skills, visual discrimination, fine motor skills, reading and listening skills whilst having fun with games and stories. Most of the content is the same in the print and digital editions but there is some bonus content in the digital version and the addition of some videos and animation. There are a few places where I would like to see the iPad’s capability used more fully, with addition of the ability to zoom in the hidden object and “that’s silly” pictures, more refined art tools in the drawing sections, and the addition of narration to the story video. This app does contain in-app purchases, and un-purchased books are visible on the bookshelf, if the “buy” button is pressed a maths question must be answered correctly before the app store can be accessed.

If you are a fan of Highlights for Children magazine I would definitely recommend checking out the Highlights: All About App – you will get the All About Fall book for free, and the other books are a good value at $1.99 each.

Highlights: All About – Highlights for Children, Inc.


Highlights: All About Highlights: All About by Highlights for Children, Inc.

Price: $FREE

Highlights’ popular ALL ABOUT themed book series is now an app! You’ll find exciting interactive play that matches your favorite activities from the books and encourages creativity and learning.

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).

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