I am constantly on the look out for new and fun educational iPad Apps for kids. I recently tested out two of the Stella & Sam apps,by zinc Roe Productions. Stella and Sam, brother and sister, embark together on magical, imaginative adventures. Apparently these apps stem from a picture book and television series for preschoolers in Canada by Marie-Louise Gay. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be familiar with the books or show in order to fall in love with these adorable apps.
I tested out the “Go-There-Square” app, as well as “Backyard at Twilight.” In the “Go-There-Square” story, you can even see one of my favorite fingertip toys and games called the “Go There Square” (aka Cahootie)! The iPad app includes storybook video content that is embedded with different concepts, great for preschoolers that include counting sequences, number recognition and vocabulary. The apps themselves are mainly animated storybooks that play for a few minutes before stopping three different times within each app to allow kids to participate in different activities. The activities encourage hand-eye coordination and motor planning as kids use their index fingers to match dandelion puffs, pop bubbles, and build a path of flowers across the water to make a bridge.
In the “Backyard at Twilight” app, Stella and Sam are camping out in the backyard, waiting for the Night Giant. The activities include using their finger to search the screen for hidden insects, while exhibiting hand-eye coordination to catch fireflies that form different shapes and connect stars to make constellations that transform into familiar animals. These activities are very interactive, and I found my toddler, though he is younger than the targeted age group for this app, so excited to shout out the animal transforming in the sky with his developing vocabulary.
The Stella and Sam apps are among the best ipad apps, because they are great to encourage kids to attend to pictures and begin to visually discriminate details with their eyes. These are all skills that are great for young preschool children to develop to advance their educational skills for reading and writing in later school years. These Stella and Sam apps are very sweet and almost soothing, making them a great bedtime story experience for your children.
Zinc Roe Productions provided this app free to facilitate this review. The opinions are my own.