Alright. You all know that I’m not a screaming fan of e-reading, particularly where children are involved…not least because the existence and popularity of ebooks threatens the very existence of my species. But when you can’t beat ’em, it often pays to join ’em, in a non-offensive, enjoying it in a well-at-least-it’s-educational sort of way. Annoyingly for my anti-ebook stance however, the interactive storybooks I present to you today are not only educational, they are also quite fun.
I have three offerings for you that I have stumbled upon while snatching glances at the fleshling’s tablet, in an attempt to jealously ensure that ebooks are not becoming the reading mode of choice in the household. (Luckily they’re not…something to do with the sensitive nature of the fleshling’s eyeballs and resultant inability to stare at the screen for too long. God bless your puny human anatomy). Each of these books includes not only text to read alone or with a friend/parent/co-reader, but other enticing interactive features. The first….
This charming little racoon creature features in about five separate story apps (plus other, non-story based games), with the added bonus that the first in the series is FREEEEEE! (No doubt one of the contributing factors to its ending up on this tablet). Each app has a number of interactive stories that feature instructions for little ones to follow, such as “rub Pango’s tummy” 0r “pick up the toys and give them to Pango”. On following these instructions the reader is rewarded with the dual pleasures of a quirky little sound and the related movement of plot in a forward direction.
The colourful illustrations and cute little animal characters are sure to be a hit with mini-fleshlings, but I confess to having seen the older fleshlings in the house playing with this one while the mini-fleshling was asleep, such is the appeal of the Pango package. It’s available at the Google Play store…and maybe the Apple one too…this house only has an android device, so I’m not entirely sure.
Next is the adventurous little e-tome I’m Stuck in Your Kindle! by Wally Otto.
This is a cute and humorous romp that combines rhyming text with the mutual efforts of reader and subject to forcibly remove the subject from his story-prison. There are apparently a whole range of ebooks by Wally Otto in the same vein. This one is not as interactive as the Pango series, but would appeal to slightly older children or younger ones reading with parents, as the text in itself is quite chuckle-worthy. It’s available at Amazon and priced at $3.99 (although assuredly my fleshling owner got it on sale, as it is highly unlikely that nearly 4 dollars would have been expended on a book that doesn’t actually have pages).
Finally, we have Don’t Lend A Monster Your Favourite Toy by Elwyn Tate.
Again, this is one for slightly older children who are beginning to read on their own, but the rhyming text and fun monsters inhabiting the e-pages will appeal to a wide range of ages. This cautionary tale features a few bits of interactive wizardry that allow kids to enlarge bits of the illustrations and get pop-up profiles on particular toy-wrecking monsters. I must admit I’m a bit of a sucker for monster stories and stories that explicitly warn readers away from particular behaviours…because you just know that someone’s going to ignore the sage advice and suffer the terrible consequences…so here’s another reminder:
never, ever, whatever the weather, lend a monster your favourite toy. It will not end well. This one is also available at Amazon.
With this post I feel I have acquitted myself of any responsibility to promote reading in its various technological forms. You can expect normal transmission to resume forthwith.
Until next time,