Look and Find “Our Big City” is a digital adaptation of the celebrated German picture book of the same name by Ali Mitgutch, said to be the “father and creator of Look and Find books.”
Although I do consider myself relatively well-read when it comes to children’s literature, I was not familiar with this series of Look and Find books that the Our Big City is part of.
My son and I do, however, really enjoy these seek-and-find style books, so out of curiosity I looked up this series of books, and I was surprised not to find a lot of information about such wildly popular children’s books from Germany, including any details as to whether or not these books are in print in English.
Because of this, I am delighted to see Ravensburger develop these titles into applications, allowing children who until now may be unaware of these titles.
There is so very much to look at within Look and Find “Our Big City” which consists of seven city scenes such as an airport, zoo, a market or a nighttime scene in an urban area as well as winter in the city.
Do enlarge these pages with a spreading of fingers to show the wonderful details each section includes which will keep children engaged for hours as they share this app with others or by themselves, as these details are terrific for creating one’s own stories.
I enjoy looking at these pages myself, as the airport motif includes a sick patient on a plane being tended to by a doctor, a celebrity being photographed as she leaves another airplane with her entourage, along with other passengers among the chaos of a very busy airport being maintained with cleaning crews, baggage handlers, a mechanical crew and other fun elements.
Other favorite areas of this app is the market square that is unlike the supermarkets many children are used to, including not only the sales of dry goods, milk, bread, sausages and other foods, but other interesting wares such as saws, axes or clocks, as well as artisans at work building sandals, knitting or sharpening knives, creating the look of a European market place that many children will be fascinated by.
I also really enjoy the details found in the city at night as one can see inside apartment windows to view everything from an argument taking place, artist at work, dancers at a disco, or even a burglar gaining entrance into a building. The streets are filled with interesting traffic and other sights to see such as mannequins being changed or people relaxing by a fountain.
It is terrific how many of these characters are caught mid-action, creating dynamic pictures that children will enjoy a great deal, finding a new detail each time one looks back at these pages.
Readers will notice the sound effects incorporated into each of these scenes found with a tap that bring extra richness to these details, such as animal noises at the zoo or the sounds of children at play within the pool or winter scene. I do find, however, some of the other more industrial sounds found in the airport or nighttime scenes involving equipment or sirens to be sometimes loud and distracting. To deal with this, I would love to be able to silence these hot spots with a tap as well to keep this app a relaxing experience.
After one has spent time simply enjoying the details found throughout these pages in Discovery Trip, also venture into Picture Hunt by tapping the camera at the top of the page which will bring users into a blank photo album that needs to be filled.
Each space within the photo album includes a faint grey tone detail from the bigger illustration that one must take a photo of to fill in these sections.
To start, tap the camera icon associated with one of these grey-toned images which will bring users back to the main page, now greyed out as well except for the full color image seen through the camera. Do line up the sometimes awkward cropping of the guide images as children will be rewarded for accuracy when taking these pictures which will unlock bonus pages of photos to be taken from each theme.
I enjoy the narration included within this section giving instruction as well as congratulating children on their photographs, also allowing kids to re-take a photo to gain more stars if need be, as one needs to collect stars to unlock bonus photographs to be taken within this section.
It is especially nice that the progress completing this album is saved to be continued in the future – an important element with an app with such content.
I would also like to point out that English, French, Spanish, German and Italian are included, in terms of narration in the Picture Hunt section, as well as the market or street signs seen in these motifs – a choice that I appreciate, allowing this app to be enjoyed by many children of different backgrounds.
I feel fortunate to be able to share Look and Find “Our City” with my son, a book my son most likely would not be able to enjoy without the iPad adaptation of this German classic.
If interested, the other titles from this series “In the Country” and “Come with me to the Sea” are also available through iTunes as well as to be reviewed by GiggleApps in the future.Posted in: Art, By Age Range, By App Feature, Creativity, Just For Fun, Parents and Kids, Preschool, Primary School, Puzzle, Reviews, Toddlers