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 Random.org 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.
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