As soon as the iPad hit the market last year, it became obvious that this device, with its hands-on interactive features and user-friendly layout, is an ideal teaching tool for children.
Developers saw this opportunity and immediately began writing and designing children’s books specifically for the iPad. But with the vast number of books in the App Store, it can be difficult to choose. Below are several books worth checking out.
Imagination Soup ranked the top iPad children’s books based on age range. The list includes several free books like Disney’s Toy Story. Stories targeting tweens and teens, not as common as books for younger readers, were also reviewed. The site’s favorite: Be Confident in Who You Are, a realistic story that shows how kids can navigate through the issues of middle school.
Newly-penned stories aren’t the only ones to debut on the touchscreen. Mashable rated five classic tales that translate beautifully into digital form. Lewis Caroll’s Alice in Wonderland was one of the first books to become available in the App Store. Alice for the iPad brings Sir John Tenniel’s original woodcut illustrations to life with interactive features and animation. Shake the device to watch salt and pepper shakers fly; tilt it to control the direction of falling furniture; and make Alice grow with just the swipe of a finger.
Kids, and many adults, will be excited to learn that the entire collection of Dr. Seuss is now available on the iPad, in all of its rhyming quirkiness. Designed by Oceanhouse Media to promote literacy, these books can be read in three settings: “read to me,” “read it myself” or “auto play.” The apps also feature picture/word association. When certain images are touched, the word zooms up on the screen and is spoken by the narrator. Classics like Green Eggs and Ham, The Cat in the Hat, Fox in Socks and How the Grinch Stole Christmas can be reread and experienced in a whole new way.
Bringing classic characters to life transforms the reading experience for children, but some developers are flipping that idea and putting kids right into the story. JibJab founders and makers of the popular “Starring You” holiday e-cards, Gregg and Evan Spiridellis, are the most recent designers to join the growing children’s book market.
They’re bringing with them their trademark personalization features. With the iPad 2’s built-in camera, it’s easy to immediately insert a child’s picture into the story. Add a few personal facts, and a completely customized story is created.
“For kids books, you want color, touch-screen and interactivity,” said Michel Kripalani, founder of Oceanhouse Media. With the selection of books available, children are getting just that.