Monday, October 17, 2011

iPad Apps - Part One

The iPad, to me, has the potential to accomplish GREAT things in this house. For me, it's a portable sanity saver. I bring it into bed with me every night - like most people bring a book. There, I attempt to catch up on emails (I'm sorry if you're waiting on one!) - but often get sucked into MY favorite app - Flipboard. That is, if Ed hasn't gotten to it first and is playing Angry Birds.

But more than us - the boys will...and have already...benefitted from this iPad. Tonight I will list the apps I have. I'll tell you who they were intended for...what my opinion is of them...and how the boys like them. I hope you find something new for your kids! And I would REALLY appreciate if you'd leave a comment under this entry if you have an app you'd like to share. My goal is to have one, big comprehensive list on this page (not on Facebook or emails) that everyone can come back to.

Actually - this post has been more of an undertaking than I thought! After a long day with the boys - I'm hungry for dinner! So I will continue this post tomorrow with the games and book apps that Brian is obsessed with - and so am I. So you can leave comments today AND tomorrow! Yay!

Our most expensive app - but the one that could potentially be the BEST for Gavin is called Proloquo2Go. For $189.99, although it seems steep, it is thousands (and I mean THOUSANDS) of dollars cheaper than the typical communication devices that are out there. It's been slow going for Gavin with this app. Between his wavering motor skills and his developmental challenges - we're never really sure if he "gets it" or not. But we continue to try and I'm confident that he'll get it someday soon!!

To try to help Gavin get used to touching the screen, I bought several apps that appeal to his love of music, sound and lights.

Musical Hands is one of his favorites. It has color - it has lights - and he makes the music when he touches the screen. The best part is that he doesn't have to touch it in specific spots. Anywhere he touches - something happens. It's a great baby and toddler app - we give it two thumbs up! Here's a video of Gavin using it:

Peekaboo Barn and Peekaboo Wild were two that I got early on for Gavin. They are adorable apps that Gavin seemed to "get" right away.

Boogie Bopper and Sound Shaker are two really great apps. Babies would love these! There are two ways to use these apps, both made by Tickle Tap Apps. One is easy as Gavin can touch anywhere and things happen. The other requires him to isolate a finger and touch specific places when they light up. This will be great down the road as he gets better using the iPad.

Giggle Touch is another fun baby app. It pretty much exactly what it says! Anywhere Gavin touches on the screen, a letter or a shape or a color pops up and is accompanied by an infectious baby giggle. It's hard not to laugh yourself when you're listening to it for a while!

Zoola Baby is cute. They are basically flashcards with real photos of animals. One is a baby - and it will make the baby animal sound. The other is the grown up - which makes the grown up animal sound. Although bought for Gavin, neither of the boys is all that into it.

Magic Piano is probably one of the coolest apps ever. (If you click the hyperlink you'll see a video on their website) It's another pretty motivating app for Gavin as touching the screen continuously plays one of his favorite songs. It sounds like a real piano - and down the road as he gets more adept at finger placement he'll even be able to do chords and harmonies on his own! I love this app - it's pretty addicting for me.

Doodle Kids is another "touch trainer" that I use for Gavin. Wherever he touches - or drags his finger or hand - bright colors and shapes follow.

I HIGHLY recommend the following apps from Duck Duck Moose.

These apps have beautiful graphics and hidden gems everywhere. Gavin especially loves Itsy Bitsy.

I have every single ABA flash card . I got them a while ago thinking they would be great. Although they are very educational...we rarely touch them.

Where's Mommy is a great app that you can fully customize. You can load photos of your family and record your own voice...asking "Where's Granny" and the child has to find the matching photo.

To be continued...


  1. Balls is an app that I think Gavin would enjoy. Anywhere you touch, it makes a sound. There are also several colorful balls that move about the screen. When they hit the edges of the screen, they make noise. They also have colorful trails behind them. You can customize the size of the balls, the length of the trails, the sound it makes, how much the color shows, and a bunch of other things.

  2. Interesting List

  3. I love your list, especially the music apps, can't wait to try those!

    My kids LOVE:
    1) Elmo Loves ABC's--this has over 75 classic Sesame Street videos that the user can't watch unless they trace the upper and lowercase letters--held hostage if you will! I loved watching my 2 year old progress from begging me to trace for him to now being able to fill in the letters enough to access the video.

    2) ABC Train--very interactive, my kids think this is hilarious. Very interactive and you can customize it with your own voice as well.

    3) Thomas and Friends--puzzles, matching, and a treasure hunt game, great fun although it didn't take long for them to play it out and get bored with it.

    4) Working on the Railroad Lite--Very interactive, lots of surprises, addictive song, puzzles, stickers; apparently you don't get much more with the pay version than with the Lite version, so we never have bought the full version

    5)iWriteWords--tracing 3 letter words, upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and fun tilting to get rid of used letters. It's really simple but my kids love it.

    6)Toddler Teasers Shapes--the pay version has MUCH more than the free version, but my kids love even the free version. Learn shapes and earn stickers, from simple to complex, as in circles to truncated cones! The pay version has much more to learn than shapes.

  4. It's amazing to see both boys using the iPad...they are so smart!

  5. Apps we love: Giraffe's Matching Zoo (free but you can upgrade), Toddler Teasers--we have Shapes, Colors, Numbers, and Letters (.99), Story Chimes--Red Riding Hood, Three Little Pigs, (.99), SmackTalk (.99) Colton LOVES this one! The animals repeat the sounds, words, etc. that you say., My ABC train (free), Toy Story Read Along (puzzles, story, recordable so that your voice reads the story--(free), Nighty Night, an interactive story.

  6. Phone4kids... check it out. I forgot to list it. It has tons of fun things!


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