App Reviewed on: iPad 3
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Pigeon Presents: Mo... on the Go! is a fun collection of activities based on the books by Mo Willems; a children’s author and illustrator whom my family adores. Titles from both the Elephant and Piggie as well as Don’t let the Pigeon Ride the Bus and the others from this series are favorite books of my son and are some of the first stories he read out loud by himself. Because of this, I was interested in checking out Mo on the Go! - an interactive app that includes interactive activities based on a Mo Willems storybook. This is in addition to a drawing section where children and adults now have the chance to interact with Willems in the Mo's Squillems! area of this app; allowing children to complete simple illustration with their own flare, be it first drawn by mo himself or with the help of a friend, also with the choice of saving one's work as well as emailing as a postcard.
Monster Maker is a character builder based on Leonardo, the Terrible Monster, who - as readers may know - is not too scary a monster himself. Here, a Frankensteinian switch is thrown that begins the rotation of three separate top, middle, and bottom monster sections, creating a new and interesting creature that one can create with the tap of a finger. The different monster parts are used to make up characters that are wonderfully detailed and include a nice amount of variety. A second button can also be pressed that will animate the character for a fun effect.
In another area of this app, choose dance steps for Elephant and Piggie in Elephant & Piggie’s Dance-O-Rama. Options include moves such as the Piggie Jiggie, Air Piggie, Elephant Side, or the Robo-Gerald 3000. After choosing three out of five selections each, these friends then dance up a storm in this comical and sweet section. Dream Drive allows players to help Pigeon finally get a chance to drive the bus - be it while dreaming. Help navigate city streets with the drag of a finger as Pigeon tries to pick up bunches of chicks with the bus while avoiding blocked off areas.
When each of these areas of fun is accomplished - be it monster building, helping out in the dance-off, or steering Pigeon through town from behind the wheel - a completed scene will be rewarded with a sticker at the end of each section. It is also accessed in the Sticker Vault, which shows the outline of stickers to still be earned. Use these stickers within the Sticker Pictures - a Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale themed scene that allows one to decorate personal pictures either taken, chosen from those available on one’s camera roll, or use the Brooklyn-based photos seen in this highly popular picture book this activity is based on.
These different activities are short and sweet - charming choices for fun distractions that will entertain young children. I think Willems' fans, a wide audience due to the extensive popularity of the writer and illustrator, will especially appreciate what Pigeon Presents: Mo... on the Go! has to offer. In the future, I would love to see move narrative-based apps based on these included titles, such as the previous application Don’t Let the Pigeon Run This App! as and I think the wonderful characters and storytelling of the Elephant and Piggie titles as well as other Willems books would be great to develop into other storybook apps. Until that time comes, however, children will enjoy spending time with their favorite characters via this application.