With winter upon us – yes, even down here in the Deep South – I’ve really had to switch up the way we do things around the old homestead. With our outdoor playtime often limited by the weather, I’ve been making a conscious effort to introduce more family reading time, and a good bit of that has been done using the iPad.
Most recently The Adventures of Peter Pan, an interactive storybook from French developer So Ouat, has been in high demand by both my three- and six-year-olds. A beautiful, suitably whimsical retelling of the J. M. Barrie classic, it follows the (heavily abridged) exploits of Peter Pan as he introduces Wendy Darling and her brothers to the magic of Neverland.
With French, English, German and Dutch language support (both in the written text and the optional narration), the core story experience itself has a lot to offer, but the most satisfying aspect of this app is its various extras. Offering fun interactive options and a little light edutainment to readers up to five years of age and a more comprehensive look at language mechanics for those six and up, The Adventures of Peter Pan has ably played double duty for my geeklings.
My young daughter has enjoyed the easy play/pause controls, touch pronunciation and hidden animations, generally unlocked by tapping the screen or dragging sparkling pixie dust from its onscreen container across the illustration. Similarly my son, already a voracious reader, has gotten a lot of use out of the “Explain to Me” and “Show Me” options that toggle on definitions and specialty illustrations for selected words.
Combining a classic pop-up-style design and noticeably high production values, The Adventures of Peter Pan is a real charmer. With its spy glasses, pirate ships and sound effects galore, it’s really an easy app to love even at the $3.99 price point. It’s also universal, so there’s the added bonus of being able to load it to your iPhone for a little on-the-go reading, but all this doesn’t mean the product is without flaws.
The touch detection on a few of the words during the expanded vocabulary exercises is less-than perfect, and So Ouat goes a tad overboard with promoting their other titles in-app, which can prove bothersome. Still, it manages to stand up well even alongside licensed interactive ebooks from children’s entertainment titans like Sesame Street. And besides, what better tale to share with your kids than that of the boy who wouldn’t grow up?
Review materials provided by: So Ouat