With Valentines Day just around the corner, a great way to get in the mood is to share some Valentine’s themed apps and stories with your children. Here are some of our favorite apps that feature Valentine’s Day or Love – whether it be for a child, parent, grandparent or friends.
Happy Valentine’s Day, Little Critter by Oceanhouse Media
In this classic story from Mercer Mayer it’s Valentine’s Day and Little Critter is excited as they are having a big Valentines Day party at school. This is a great storybook app for young children as it prepares them for all the Valentine’s day activities they will typically do in pre-school and early Elementary School. It features word highlighting as it is read, record yourself options and touchable words.
Happy Valentine’s Day, Little Critter!
by Oceanhouse Media
Price: $1.99 USD
*** Featured By Apple - Valentine's Day Fun for Kids *** *** Top 10 Book Apps - February 2015 *** *** 100 Noteworthy Apps From 2015 - Children's Technology Review *** "Looking for a solid app.
Elmo Loves YouPop up Storybook App by Story Toys.
Adorable Elmo and his Sesame Street pals are the stars in this pop -up storybook app. Elmo narrates the sweet simple story and explains that everyone has something they love. On each page Elmo gives examples such as birds love to make music, babies love to make noise and kids love toys. There are lots of fun interactions to find and familiar Sesame Street characters appear throughout the app. Read our full review here
iTunes Link: Elmo Loves You! – StoryToys Entertainment Limited
Elmo Loves You!
by StoryToys Entertainment Limited
Price: $2.99 USD
This is a storybook and early-learning reading app, which will help teach your child about love and friendship as you enjoy storytime together.
** Winner of The Appy Awards Best Book App **
I Love You Too – Ziggy Marley by Oceanhouse Media
This is Ziggy Marley’s first children’s book and is based on his 2009 song of the same name. It is about the power of love between a parent and child. It has bright colorful engaging illustrations by Ag Jatkowska and there is even an option to hear Ziggy sing the whole song.
Sing and play with Ziggy Marley as you explore his first children's book based off the song from his Grammy Award winning album "Family Time!" Explore pictures, learn new vocabulary, and personalize the.
I Love You All the Time by Cookie Bear Press
Delightful adaptation of the print book for young children and their families to read together, especially if family lives far away or children simply need reassurance that Mommy and Daddy will always love them no matter what they do. This simple bedtime story features rhyming verse with heartfelt sentiments and bright, simple colorful graphics. The app also has lots of hidden animations, a song and a record it yourself option. Read our full review
I Love You All The Time
by Cookie Bear Press, Inc.
Price: $1.99 USD
REVIEWS: "...should not be missing in your kids apps collection." topbestappsforkids.com
The light animation and digital enhancements are perfect for the toddler set. Highly Recommended!" www.
Will & Kate by Ink Robin
Will & Kate is about the real life fairytale romance between Prince William and HRH Kate Middeton, Duchess of Cambridge. It is told with hand drawn cartoons, interactive animations and lots of British humor. Sheep and corgis pop up a lot, and kids will have a lot of fun with this app from Ink Robin, and it is currently FREE
iTunes Link: Will & Kate – Ink Robin
Will & Kate
by Ink Robin
'Will and Kate is a charming, clever, witty and utterly gorgeous e-book. I want to read it over and over again forever ... This is truly one of the best e-books I've seen.' Kids Book Review
Draw With Hearts- Happy Valentine’s Day by L’Escapadou
Have fun creating your own Valentines Day pictures with this free app from L’Escapadou -the developers of the popular educational apps Word Wizard and Writing Wizard. You can turn your own photos into Valentine’s Day cards by adding animated pulsing hearts in different colors and sizes.
Draw with Hearts - Happy Valentine's Day !
Note: Screenshot feature does not work anymore in iOS6. So please use the following workaround: -Press the Home button (the main button below the screen) and Sleep button (on the top edge of the device.
My Little Pony: Hearts and Hooves Day by PlayDate Digital.
Little pony fans will enjoy this Valentines-themed storybook app. It is Hearts and Hooves Day in Ponyville – a day when ponies celebrate friendship and caring for one another. The fillies get carried away trying to find a special friend for their teacher Miss Cheerilee. Everything goes wrong but they manage to put it all right and learn a valuable lesson in the process and that Hearts and Hooves Day is really about friendship and caring for one another.
My Little Pony: Hearts and Hooves Day
by PlayDate Digital
Price: $2.99 USD
It's Hearts and Hooves Day, and all of Ponyville is celebrating friendship!
But that’s not enough for Scootaloo, Sweetie Belle, and Apple Bloom! They want to help their teacher, Miss Cheerilee.
Is the Witch in Love by Slim Cricket
The witch thinks she’s in love with the handsome and famous sorcerer Merlinor. She dreams of being invited to the big party that he throws every year for Halloween. Despite the advice of her faithful bat-friend, Batina, she decides to do everything she can to charm Merlinor: change her appearance, swap her old broomstick for a deluxe model and even learn good manners.
Is the Witch in Love?
Price: $2.99 USD
“Is the Witch in Love?” is a subtle blend of story, games and cartoons.
Discover --- or rediscover --- “The Witch with No Name” in a new interactive adventure full of emotion and magic.<.
Grandma loves bugs by Fairlady Media
Grandma Loves Bugs by Fairlady Media includes ten mini games including: spot the difference, magic coloring, letter match, bug spelling, counting fireflies, number groups, bug identification, feed the baby bird, bug matching and building a spider web. The app incorporates skills for children aged preschool through early elementary school who are learning while they are having fun!
Grandma Loves Bugs
by Fairlady Media
Price: $2.99 USD
Learn all about bugs with Grandma! This adventurous Grandma needs help identifying bugs, coloring butterflies, catching fireflies, spelling buggy words, matching letters on bees and flowers, building .
I love Mountains by Forest Giant
Mountains are AMAZING! Join Sloan Graham as she shares her love of mountains in her first book for the iPad. Inside you’ll explore and learn how mountains form and where some of the most impressive mountains are located. You’ll also learn a thing or two about the plants and wildlife that call mountains their home.
I Love Mountains
by Forest Giant, Inc.
Mountains are AMAZING! Join Sloan Graham as she shares her love of mountains in her first book for the iPad. Inside you'll explore and learn how mountains form and where some of the most impressive mountains.
Nampa Farm by Nampa Design is a cute farm themed app which includes eight mini games, creative play and most of all fun! The app requires no reading or speech and allows kids to get creative while playing. The app is designed by Nampa Design based in Sweden. Be sure to check out our other Nampa Design app reviews too including Nampa Holiday and Nampa Party.
What we love…
illustrations and fun mini games
What we’d love to see…
planting veggies, a tractor driving game
Nampa Farm is a delightful app aimed at toddlers, preschool and kindergarteners packed with fun! The mini games are engaging and encourage kids to tap, touch and explore all in a safe environment.
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The Nampa Farm eight mini games include:
1) Fixing farm vehicles (including putting wheels on and making sure they are oiled so they are not squeaky)
2) Giving the sheep a makeover complete with shaving or blow drying more fur on, bows, and the ability to dye the sheep your favorite color
3) Decorating the farm house complete with paint and shapes using a brush, stamper or narrower brush
4) Planting magic flowers from flower seeds and seeing what will grow after you water it. My son enjoyed mixing the various seeds in the pot
5) Playing the chicken piano by tapping on the chickens while they squack, crow or make other funny noises – you can either have background music on or off.
6) Decorating horses in the stable with paint, a saddle and bridle and even dying their mane. Tap on the brush to see the fun designs you can make – my son loved the braids!
7) Build a scarecrow complete with a themed head which ranges from vegetable, a farm bucket, balloon and more! Then you put on a hat, and a shirt, apron a all while your fun Nampa friends have carrots while they watch. You can also decorate your items on the scarecrow as while while decorating
8) It’s time to groove to the disco – this is a signature of Nampa games and truthfully one of my four year old’s favorite parts. You can make the lights flash colors, dance along and listen to fun music!
I loved the illustrations and fun games in Nampa Farm – somehow my son always started using the Disco first and last while playing the various mini games in between. I liked that Nampa Farm was quick or longer to play which made it perfect for those in between moments when I just needed a quick break and it was educational. Having grown up in New England with chickens I personally enjoyed the zany chickens as well as the tractor.
In terms of enhancements, I would love to see a drive the tractor game beyond just decorating it and fixing the squeaky wheels. It might also be fun to plant some vegetables on the farm beyond the flowers. One of my kids favorite things about going to a farm after seeing the animals is to check out the great vegetables that they have. They also love to water things!
Nampa Farm requires no wi-fi to play, no third party advertising or in-app purchases.
Overall, Nampa Farm is a delightful app aimed at toddlers, preschool and kindergarteners packed with fun! The mini games are engaging and encourage kids to tap, touch and explore all in a safe environment. It’s always fun for me to see the different ways that my kids interact with apps or play with them in ways I might not have expected such as always playing the Disco at the start and end of each time playing with an app.
Fitoons by Avokiddo is an app featuring a variety of foods which encourages kids to eat healthy, exercise and get fit!
What we love…
Fitoons encourages exercise, healthy eating both on and off device. By choosing a variety of foods and doing exercise with their character they can see what impact it has on their bodies.
What we’d love to see…
Encourage kids to go play outside and exercise. When performing sports like biking and skiing have the character wear the appropriate safety equipment like a helmet to carry over what we as parents are teaching at home.
Great app that encourages healthy eating, exercise and fun! Kids are able to perform actions within the app and see what it does to the player and enables families to have discussions about the importance of exercise, healthy eating and play!
Fitoons by Avokiddo features a workout demo and can even be configured to vegan food only! Upon opening Fitoons, there are three choices: dress up, pick your favorite outfit and character to workout in; exercise, where a variety of exercises both indoor and outdoor from sit ups to biking are featured and when tasks are completed you earn stars; foods – choose either healthy options or not and see swhat it does to your character. There are six different appliances to choose from. Avokiddo also features a wide variety of other apps which encourage fitness both physical and brain fitness, challenges related to physics, challenges, emotions and more. Avokiddo always has great apps that I always buy and recommend!
My kids love making food especially in the blender for smoothies. As a family we talked about healthy food choices like broccoli, watermelon, apple versus unhealthy like cupcakes and pizza. One of the things about the app that was fun was you could see the character’s expression depending on food choices. Make a bad choice, and you would see the character gain weight. Make a healthy choice like an apple and you would get a smile. After eating, it was time to head in for exercise. Every time you complete an exercise you are awarded stars which was encouraging for my kids. After performing the task on screen I also encouraged them to try it at home to encourage our physical fitness. There were exercises both inside and outside which encouraged off device time.
As a parent, I liked that Fitoons encouraged physical fitness, healthy eating choices while offering kids choices for clothing. I also liked that while exercising that the character would show facial expressions that indicated exercise wasn’t always easy! After exercising for a bit, we headed back to the kitchen for a healthy snack of apple, orange and broccoli. My kids were excited when they earned more characters by completing tasks within the Fitoons. They were even more excited when we went outside to play after playing with the Fitoons!
In terms of enhancements, I would like to see a section that encourages kids to go outside and play. My kids love playing sports outside like soccer, hitting a baseball or even dribbling a basketball. Even having a simple reminder for them like the words “great job, now you try it!” would be a great addition. Having safety equipment on outside sports like biking with a helmet or skiing with a helmet and googles would help to reinforce those needed behaviors.
Avokiddo apps are child friendly! There are no in-app purchases (IAP) and they are both COPPA and GDPR complaint. Avokiddo does not collect, store or share personal information or location data via their apps. There is no advertising outside of their own apps and they are safe for young children with included parental gates. Avokiddo apps do not require the use of the internet or your data to play other than the download.
Fitoons encourages healthy eating, exercise and fun! Kids are able to perform actions within Fitoons and see what it does to the player and enables families to have discussions about the importance of exercise, healthy eating and play!
Price: $3.99 USD
3, 2, 1 Go! Exercise, eat healthy, and get fit! Can a dog be an expert hurdler? Should you make smoothies from fruit or pizza? Find out in this fun fitness game for kids that’s like no other. <.
Dr. Panda Town: Pet World by Dr. Panda is a fun themed pet addition to the Dr. Panda series of apps featuring Dr. Panda Town. Each area of the app had fun twists and turns and I was able to encourage language. We did this by telling my kids to count, describe what you see, tell me what colors are there while they played as live narration. There are over 30 characters, five action locations, four theme park rides, hidden surprises found by tapping, and full of free play!
What we love…
fun areas for kids to explore and learn about animals with no rules, ability to use language to describe what they were seeing and doing as well as encouraging exploration.
What we’d love to see…
more costumes to dress the animals up in, ability to better take care of animals rather than just a band aid or an IV that runs out in the veterinarian
Much like other Dr. Panda apps, my kids enjoyed playing with Dr. Panda Town: Pet World – they had so much fun tapping, exploring, hatching new animals and bringing them to other Dr. Panda Town locations.
The Dr. Panda Town: Pet World app features a variety of areas you can visit, note some of these areas are gated and require an in-app purchase (IAP) to be able to access them.
A fun concession stand where you can make water, drinks and other concessions as well as my personal favorite cotton candy which changed colors as you made it. My kids loved that too! There is ice cream, a Ferris wheel, carnival games and other great fun options.
Magic Castle: Be sure to tap on the train which is your gateway to the magic castle! The train brings you further inside the app inside a castle where you can cast spells, dress up and more. There are a variety of props including a throne, books, music, moving animals, a playing harp and more! Don’t wake the sleeping giant!
Enchanted Café: Hatchery (cleverly disguised as a “tea house” where you can find, sort eggs and hatch new pets from eggs by tapping on them and placing the eggs inside a matching color flower. Each time you get a fun new addition to the app! Veterinarian (pet hospital) where you can scan your pets using an x-ray, give your pets a swim, give them procedures, brush them, do minor surgery, examine a heart and lungs and even dress up your favorite Dr. Panda people characters as veterinarians. Outside there is an ambulance and wheelchair to transport your pets to the clinic. Travel station where you can get a passport, have packed bags, see times in different places – I also loved that Dr. Panda showed both NY and Beijing on the clocks and that they would move around in sync. My older son is learning about various time zones and thought this was a fun feature as well as the ability to open luggage. In the next room over there are a variety of animal habitats including a fish tank, various animal food available from a vending machine, collars and other pet habitats. My kids loved putting the dog in for a nap, playing with toys as well as opening and closing all the doors of the habitats. Outside there is a small park compete with the fixings for a birthday party including cake which you make in a muffin pan and sprinkles! Pets and humans could take a swim in the bone shaped pool and have a variety of meals poolside from the concession stand. Furry friends could also play in the mud puddle and then go for a swim to get clean.
One of the great things about Dr. Panda Town apps including Dr. Panda Town: Pet World is that when you buy each individual app you can navigate within the apps using an included map and bring your pets to other Dr. Panda town locations. I loved the variety of objects to touch, explore and play with within the app. My four year old is really into pretend play and enjoyed being a veterinarian and helping the animals as well as adopting new pets. My older son liked the carnival, hatchery and train. Dr. Panda apps have no rules and that made this all the more fun for my kids who could explore each of the individual areas as they wished without having to play a game or move on before they were done. We have all of the other Dr. Panda Town apps and my kids loved bringing the animals on vacation, to the mall and more! They even went shopping at the mall with their new pets in hand!
In terms of improvements, in the vet shop, my son struggled a bit to get the IV to work – I’m not sure if it was meant to just flow water out or if it was supposed to make the pets move around as they felt better. My kids also wanted animal specific items to help them feel better along with a way to clean the fish tank! Using the bandages if you tap on them it makes a bandage, but it won’t let you wrap a leg. My kids also wanted a section where they could dress up their favorite pet, inside the mall are a variety of costumes, but not necessarily ones appropriate for pets. They wanted Halloween or holiday themed costumes or even clothing to depend on the season like a coat.
The app has in-app purchases where you can unlock all three areas for $3.99 USD. The app has no advertising except for their own Dr. Panda games which are protected via a parental gate.
Overall, Dr. Panda Town: Pet World another great add to the Dr. Panda app collection. My kids and I enjoyed playing with it and testing it out. I loved the variety of things you could do within the app as well as all of the various interaction’s kids could do and explore. The first time my four year old played with the app he spent 30 minutes just inside the veterinarian swapping out each character and tapping on things!
Dr. Panda Town: Pet World
by Dr. Panda Ltd
Grab your ticket and let the fun begin as you enter the gates to Dr. Panda Town: Pet World! Go on theme park rides, explore an enchanted café, hatch cool pets and more!
DISCOVER THE THEME PARK.
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.
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