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Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary Comes To iOS

Posted by Jennifer Allen on September 13th, 2011
+ Universal & Apple Watch App - Designed for iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch

Learning a new language is challenging work. Fortunately technology is around to make things a little simpler courtesy of apps like Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary.

The app is aimed at those learning English as a foreign language, promising cutting edge features such as full sentence pronunciations and thousands of detailed graphics that aim to bring words and definitions to life.

In all, there are 58,000 example sentences that can be listened to with the option for either British or American voices. 183,500 words, phrases and meanings are explained clearly with an integrated thesaurus providing plenty of synonyms and lists of collocations. As the dictionary will explain, collocations are words that go together. See? Even as a first language, there's a whole bunch of words that could be learned through this app!

Priced at $28.99, Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary is on the heftier side of pricing but it's for a good reason. It's a comprehensive app and one that a book of the same depth would be considerably more expensive. For those learning English as a foreign language, this is an invaluable resource.

TripLingo Spanish Essentials Review

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Jennifer Allen on May 11th, 2011
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: INVALUABLE
TripLingo aids users in their quest to learn another language, and it does so in a fun, informative way.
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Food Fight! – An Interactive Book Review

Posted by GiggleApps Staff on February 16th, 2011
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

Food Fight! – An Interactive Book is an iPad storybook that my son and I find really enjoyable. It is a unique and original story about two boys from different worlds who at first seem to have a lot of differences but really have much in common.

First you meet Tim, who is a really picky eater and will eat nothing but sausages for every meal and snack. Next, on another planet inhabited by sausage people, we meet Sammy. Sammy eats nothing but little boys the same way Tom delights in eating sausages. Sammy finds out that there is a place where sausages are eaten and goes to earth to confront Tom. At first they cannot get past their differences but are able to work things out, with a witty surprise ending that children will love.

Read the full review at GiggleApps.

The Bronto Family Adventure Review

Posted by GiggleApps Staff on October 22nd, 2010
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

The Bronto Family Adventure is a nice book app about Jax Bronto and his dinosaur family as they go on an adventure. Children can choose to be read to or read this story to themselves, and there is a short peek-a-boo themed game your child can play as well.

This app includes nicely drawn, simple illustrations, and the narration is pleasant. My son enjoys listening to the story, and I appreciate the mild suspense created as Jax gets lost after roaming away from his parents. The ending is a happy one, but is does gently remind children not to wander too far away from mom and dad. I like the idea of being able to either listen to or read this story to my child, and when my son gets older, he can read this now familiar story to himself.

Read the Full Review on GiggleApps

Charles Peattie's Animal Alphabet Review

Posted by Amy Solomon on September 14th, 2010
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

“Charles Peattie's Animal Alphabet” is a new app from the mind of British cartoonist Charles Peattie. Beautifully drawn, this app teaches both letters and animals to children and adults of all ages as you tap your way though "A" to "Z" learning about some great animals along the way. You can also choose your favorite animal as well, or try the quiz mode. A song and video are also included. Music and sound effects add to this app's quality and charm.

I really like the interactivity this app has to offer, as well as the comedic timing of the animated clips. My son loves this app’s humor, and I really like that it is witty and fun for adults as well. I like that some unique animals, like “ibex” and “dormouse” have been chosen.

The one thing I am surprised about is that the text in neither the alphabet or the quiz areas are read out loud. I am more than happy to narrate for my pre-reader, but there are times that this is not possible, like when we are out and about in public. For these situations, this app has limited appeal for my 2.5 year old son, because he knows he is missing something.

Having said this, this is an app we love to do together.

Mr. Hat and the Magic Cube Review

Posted by Amy Solomon on September 6th, 2010
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

"Mr. Hat and the Magic Cube" is a new interactive game for children involving kids being transported to a magical world after playing with a mysterious cube. They can’t go home until they help Mr. Hat find the cube’s stolen pieces.

This app combines both animation and games that help teach spelling and vocabulary, counting, matching, dexterity, and puzzles, getting more difficult each time you play. Being plot-heavy for a kids app, "Mr. Hat and the Magic Cube" contains 3D animated video clips rivaling those of serious adult games.

I do think, however, that it takes too long to be able to go home for a children’s game, and I found it to be tiring and a bit frustrating, even for an adult. I like that the app saves your progress, but when you solve the game, I really wish it would start over from the beginning.

Putting these issues aside, I really enjoy the magical world the developers have created. Part Willy Wonka, part Dr. Seuss, this world is trippy and maybe even a little creepy for some parents. I find this refreshing compared to the other soft and fuzzy learning apps we play. I am curious to see what happens in the next "Mr. Hat" application.

Magnetic Alphabet for iPad Review

Posted by Amy Solomon on September 5th, 2010
iPad App - Designed for iPad

“Magnetic Alphabet for iPad” is an Ipad app designed like the toy every kid enjoyed playing with - the magnetic board with letters and numbers magnets. This toy has been updated for the iPad to include both lower and upper case letters, numbers, various shapes and even grammar magnetics so now you can write full sentences out correctly. There are also six different colors to choose from. You can also save your work to your iPad or share it on Facebook.

I am pleased that you can use all the characters over and over again because to spell out my son’s full name, we need multiples of some letters, and this is difficult with the original toy. My son, 2.5 years, really enjoys spreading out the different pieces on the board as we work on phonics and has taken my lead, now choosing “m’s” for mom and “d’s”  for dad, telling me he is spelling these words.

It is nice that there are apps like this for parents who prefer their kids to play with traditional, battery-free toys while still embracing the new technology of the iPad. Plus, there are no pieces to lose or pick up off the floor!

Interactive Alphabet for iPad - ABC Flash Cards Review

Posted by Amy Solomon on September 4th, 2010
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

“Interactive Alphabet for iPad - ABC Flash Cards” is a new app that teaches letters, words and cause and effect for even the youngest players. It is highly interactive and in a word: Awesome.

This app opens up with a page of letters, bright and bold. After choosing a letter, you move to the interactive page. You hear the name of letter and the corresponding word being illustrated, and you can tap on these words to repeat. Each page has lots of discoveries to make, both with sounds and moving images. The navigation of this app is also very intuitive, and you can either move back and forth among the letters or go back to the main alphabet to choose your favorites. Having three music choices to choose from is also a nice touch, each of them being upbeat and fun, buy you can also turn off the music if you desire.

With so much to tap on, my 2 1/2 year old son just loves exploring this app, and it holds his attention like no other that he plays with. From finding and opening letters left in a mailbox for “mail” to playing a xylophone for “x,” the developers really have an understanding for what interests my son. I love this app myself; even the youngest kids will appreciate the cause and effects from all that tapping.

Pre-K Safari Review

Posted by Amy Solomon on August 29th, 2010
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad

"Pre-K Safari" is an amazing education app, teaching letters, numbers, shapes, and colors. Each activity has a safari theme and is great for kids who love animals. The music has an African beat, the sound quality is high, and I find it relaxing to listen to. Each game is narrated by a friendly hyena who gives praise for the correct answer and lets the player know when the answer is wrong but is always kind and encouraging. You can also track your child’s progress with an achievement screen.

I don't think I ever taught my son how to use this app. All the activities are very intuitive, and he picked it up very quickly on his own. My son knew all his letters, numbers, shapes, and colors by just over 2 years, and I give this app and ones like it credit for helping him learn these things without any struggle whatsoever. As an adult, I find this app enjoyable as well. The colors game is taught by touching different colored butterflies, and I find their flying around quite lovely. There is also a free lite version to try, but this app is worth much more than $.99.


+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Gary Lucero on February 25th, 2009
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: RECOMMENDED
In a nutshell Trunk is a personal wiki. It gives you the tools to create interconnected web pages using the simple Markdown language as well as the more complex HTML tags. Anyone can create these pages using WikiWords, and pages can store links to other p
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Wheels on the Bus

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Christine Morris on February 18th, 2009
Our rating: starstarstarstarstar :: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
This application is a singing book designed to entertain a young child. However, it is much more than that. It has multiple languages, instruments and recording support, turning it into a great educational tool.
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Wikipedia Mobile

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Gary Lucero on January 20th, 2009
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: RECOMMENDED
When connected to the Internet you can use Wikipedia Mobile to search Wikipedia for articles, which can then be saved to you're iPhone for offline viewing. Pages retain their original formatting and can be searched for words or phrases, but the app has no
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iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Jeff Scott on September 9th, 2008
Our rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: RECOMMENDED
Linguo is a good combination translation front-end and phrase dictionary with audio phrases.
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