In which she joins the iPhone generation (plus! A giveaway!)

by DaniGirl on August 4, 2010 · 14 comments

in Reviews, promotions and giveaways

For my birthday this year, Beloved and the boys got me an iPhone. Yay! Like so many people I quizzed in my six-month long quest for info on iPhones, I found that although I wasn’t quite sure why I needed it when I set out, as soon as I had it I found it indispensable. I use it as a camera, for on-the-go connection to the Interwebs, to find the nearest Tim Hortons, as a GPS when we are traveling and, hmmm, what else? Oh yes, a phone!

When I first signed up to be a part of Mom Central’s My Living Stories blog tour, I only had the iTouch and wasn’t sure if we’d be getting an iPhone or not. And to be totally honest, once I had the iPhone I wasn’t sure if I wanted the boys rubbing their grubby little fingers all over it! But I was interested in the idea of apps for kids, so I signed up, thinking if nothing else I’d try them out on the iTouch.

And I liked the idea behind My Living Stories. They’re classic stories turned into an animated storybook application for preschoolers. In their own words,

The My Living Stories apps combine beautiful artwork, narration and interactive features in an easy to use platform that is perfect for preschoolers to read along all on their own, without any help. My Living Stories are a great solution for entertaining on-the-go or as an aid for teaching children to read at home. The apps allow for your child to read along with English or French narration or read the stories themselves. Interactive sounds and animation bring stories to life. Another great feature is the ability to record your own voice to go along with the story (this feature requires an iPhone or iPod Touch with microphone capabilities).

I’d downloaded the Princess & the Pea, King Midas, and The Tortoise & the Hare, but hadn’t yet had a chance to show them to to the boys. Then we went out for dinner to Lone Star with my folks (on my birthday, in fact!) and Lucas informed me about 90 seconds after we’d placed our order with no room for negotiation, “Me all done!” And I’d completely forgotten my restaurant distraction bag of tricks (playdough, crayons, books, dinky cars) at home. And then I remembered the iPhone.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to Decode Entertainment (the makers of My Living Stories apps). Not only was Lucas captivated, but the big boys crowded around and all three of them were engaged through all three of the storybook apps. And we managed to eat, pay the bill and escape with neither the toddler nor the birthday girl melting down. Success!

To be completely honest, I still have to poke around with the apps to figure out a few things — mostly because the iPhone itself it still so new to me. I had to read the story myself, but you are supposed to be able to hear the story being read. And, even more cool, you can record your own voice reading the story.

And now, the giveaway! Mom Central is sponsoring the My Living Stories blog tour, and is providing a $25 iTunes gift card to share with one of you. Yay for freebies!!

If you’d like to be entered in the contest, please leave a comment below and tell me which of the My Living Stories apps you would choose or suggest your favourite kid-friendly app. (Note: you seem to need to open the link to the apps through iTunes. I searched and searched, but this was the only way I could figure out how to link to it!)

Here’s the details:

1. This giveaway is for one $25 iTunes gift card.

2. You must be a Canadian resident to win.

3. I’m not the only blogger running this promotion, and you may enter the contest on multiple blogs; however, you are only eligible to win one iTunes gift card as part of the My Living Stories contest.

4. To enter, leave a comment below telling me which of the five My Living Stories apps most appeals to you. Or, suggest a kid-friendly app that you recommend.

5. A winner will be chosen using based on all eligible entries.

6. Contest closes at noon on Friday 6 August 2010. The winner will be contacted via e-mail within 24 hours.

7. You must be willing to share your contact information with Mom Central Canada to collect your prize.

Disclosure: I am participating in the My Living Stories program by Mom Central on behalf of Decode Entertainment. I received three free apps and a gift card for my participation. As you know, the opinions expressed on this blog are entirely my own.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jen August 4, 2010 at 2:09 pm

I’m not sure which I would pick – probably all of them! So far my favorite app for my little guy (just turned two) is EliasZoo. He loves the flash cards and the noises are adorable!

2 freemommiestuff August 4, 2010 at 6:47 pm In which she joins the iPhone generation (plus! A giveaway!): For my birt…

3 Krista August 4, 2010 at 8:09 pm

Thanks for blogging about these – I have been at a loss for ideas for apps for my kids, these stories are perfect. I’ll get em all, I think bit mY favourite is the tortoise and the hare!

4 Simon MacDonald August 5, 2010 at 1:26 pm

I’m going to have to check out the My Living Stories apps to see if Anna would like any. My personal recommendation would be LetsTans Deluxe which is geometric shape puzzle game. Great problem solving game.

Some of her other favourites on the iPhone are:

Topple 2
Finger Physics
Angry Birds
Plants vs Zombies

5 Shannon August 5, 2010 at 3:22 pm

My first choice would be The Princess and the Pea! Love that story! My fave kid apps are the Robert Munsch books!!

6 Sara August 5, 2010 at 8:43 pm

My favourite would be Goldilocks and the Three Bears. My son loves when I tell him the story. He like being the Poppa Bear.

Second would be Princess and the Pea but I don’t know if boys would like that very much. Unless it is just my son.

These apps look great. I wish I kept my iTouch. lol I am THINKING about going the iPhone route and finally retire my blackberry.

Just out of nerdy curiosity, which iPhone did you get? 3G or the new iPhone 4?

7 Brenda (@ottawamom) August 6, 2010 at 8:27 am

Would love to add some new apps to my iPod Touch for the kids for our upcoming road trip and these would fit the bill nicely. Would love to have the Princess and the Pea because I live with a real life Princess and the Pea!!

8 angela August 6, 2010 at 8:29 am

i will go with my older kid’s fave app – plants vs zombies:)

for the baby? princess and the pea…but that may just because i like princesses;)

9 Amanda August 6, 2010 at 8:36 am

ooh I would love the princess and the pea…such a classic story that I LOVED as a kid!! Since babe is only 12 weeks old he has yet to “play” on mommies gadgets but I have them loaded up with apps for him when he is ready 🙂

10 Adam Smith August 6, 2010 at 8:36 am

probably the tortoise and the hare. thanks for offering the giveaway

11 Avra August 6, 2010 at 8:40 am

More books on iTunes! I’ve discovered Dr. Seuss and the boys love both the Cat in the Hat and ABC – because it acts like a real book and you can hear the words if you tap on the picture. Now I’ll have to go off in search of these new suggestions (though honestly, I got my iTouch so that I could have my own computer time :-))

12 Maranda August 6, 2010 at 8:45 am

My kids love the flash card apps. They have great high res photos and tons of themes to choose from. The photos are so good they still look good at 2x on the iPad, which is a nice bonus.

13 Suzi August 6, 2010 at 1:02 pm

We would like Goldilocks and the Three Bears


14 LJ August 7, 2010 at 11:49 pm

My two youngest are enjoying Little Red Riding Hood – the only app I have from the series. Other popular apps are Dr Seus’ ABC and Lunchbox (for preschoolers). According to my 8-year-old, the best apps by far are JellyCar and DoodleJump.

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