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The Little Witch at School by Slim Cricket – Review

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The Little Witch at School is a universal book app from French developer Slim Cricket. It is an prequel to their acclaimed book app The Witch With No Name, in this adventure the Little Witch is still at school and we learn how she lost her name. The app includes an interactive story that can be enjoyed in “read to me” or “read by myself” modes, it can be enjoyed in English or French. There are six games interspersed within the story. There are no adverts or in-app purchases, external links (to Slim Crickets other apps) are behind a parental gate. There is a page navigation guide, so the child can easily return to a favorite page.

The Little Witch is a pupil at the Chickenwich Elementary School, she and her classmates are preparing to take their first witchery and wizardry examination. The Little Witch’s best friend is Peepo the elf, who wants to be a wizard, but really isn’t very good at wizardry and is a bit of a scaredy-cat. The Little Witch is very kind to Peepo and tries her best to help him, even though some of their other classmates are quite mean to them both. For their final examination the student witches and wizards have to complete a challenge, facing amongst other things an artistic spider, a trip into the well of knowledge, a trip into an ogre’s stomach and questions from a talking tree. When they have completed all the steps they have the ingredients they need to cast a magic spell to turn their stuffed animals into the heart of their spell books. Will the Little Witch and Peepo pass all the challenges ? Will their spells work ? How does the Little Witch lose her name ? You’ll have to read the story to find out.

The Little Witch at School by Slim Cricket ReviewAs the child progresses through the story each page has interactive elements (marked by blue dots), and there are six mini-games to play including a color by numbers picture, a letter matching game to find the magic words, a pattern matching game to find their way through the ogre’s stomach, finding hidden crickets throughout the app and answering the magic tree’s questions. There is a choice of 3 different difficulty levels for the games, so you can set this to suit your child’s level. The app also has a “surprise” that is unlocked when the child has completed a series of challenges. I like that the challenges can be changed to suit different age groups – for instance in the easy setting the paint by numbers just needs number matching, but in the harder levels the child has to answer addition or even multiplication questions.

The Little Witch at School by Slim Cricket Review

The graphics in the app are wonderful – bright, colorful, detailed, animated illustrations that utilize a gyroscope effect to create a 3-D feel. There are a lot of fun interactive elements too, although I would like an option to have these not work until after the narration has finished on each page. In the “read to me” version the script scrolls paragraph by paragraph as the characters speak, and each character’s dialog is highlighted in a different color. At first I thought it wasn’t highlighted as it is read – but on closer inspection it is highlighted by the paragraph – the different colors just make this less obvious. As well as being a fun halloween app, this story can be enjoyed year around, it’s central theme is the friendship between the Little Witch and Peepo but it can also a good opportunity to talk about bullying as the other students Ghostico and Eagera can be quite mean at times.

My six-year-old twins love the original story The Witch With No Name, and were very excited to discover this app on our family iPad. They both gave it an enthusiastic thumbs up and have been going back to re-listen to the story during their iPad free playtime.

Overall, a high quality app with stunning visuals, interactive elements and educational mini-games. The story and games take about 30 minutes to complete and have lots of replay value. The Little Witch at School packs a lot if value into it’s $3.99 price tag.

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