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  Lvl 4 - Expert

Bethany P.

Status: Beta reviewer

Categories of apps she/he wants to review: Books - Education - Entertainment - Games - Lifestyle - Photography - Productivity - Utilities - Other

iDevices she/he owns: - iPad2- iPod4G

Description: I have spent the last 19 years working as a Speech-Language Pathologist in the public schools. I help kids learn how to speak more clearly or with language/ grammar difficulties. I have my Master's Degree in Speech Pathology. I also have an elementary teaching degree. I have three teenagers at my house. I enjoy trying out new apps.

Profile categories: Can test apps with kids ages over 10 - Teaching kids ages over 10 - SLP

Date when her/his profile was validated: 2012-07-09

User who invited him/her: Jean-Eudes L.

Total review Karma: + 8     ?

Each time a developer thinks a review from a reviewer is useful, he give to this reviewer +1 in review Karma. The more Karma a reviewer has, the better her/his reviews are assessed!

Her/His app reviews

Chocolate Chip Cookie Factory: Place Value (v1.0) [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This application was fun to play. It made sense to have a semi trailer for a million cookies. I liked that there was a difference between the easiest levels and hardest levels. I liked the division level because it showed the cookies being divided between the houses or businesses. I believe this would help my students better grasp this concept.
Improvements I would love to see some kind of markings on the packaging of the cookies so that I would be able to remember the place value. This is especially true on the higher levels. It would be nice if the whole problem and the answer flashed on the screen when the problem is completed. It would be nice to hear a sound when the wrong answer is chosen.
General review The cookie factory and cookies in various types of containers and packaging was clever. The program is fun. Sometimes I would forget the place values on the higher levels, since they weren't marked ( thousands, ten thousands, etc). For subtraction I found it hard to relate what I was doing to an actual subtraction problem. For division, the items were divided up among houses which made sense. I believe this would be helpful for my students.

Trains Story Puzzles - The Little Engine Who Saved the Carnival! [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This is entertaining. The puzzles don't all use the same template-- they are original in the shape of the pieces. I like that they are different difficulty levels. I like the positive feedback when the puzzle is completed. This is attractive and colorful. The theme is a great one for kids.
Improvements The voice of the characters sounds tinny, which makes it more difficult to understand. This is especially true for the main character and the little train. The animation isn't quite as advanced as the animation on another train puzzle application I have. Other puzzle applications that I own allow the person to choose 2 to 3 different difficulty levels for each of the puzzles which is nice. I think the rhyming phrase "I know I am small oh me oh my but I can help you just if I try" is long. I think it would be catchier if it was shorter. I would like to see the cars attached to each other.
General review This reminds of the "The Little Engine That Could" one of my favorite childhood books. It has an uplifting theme--keep trying. The animation is colorful and engaging. The puzzles are different difficulty levels. This gives positive feedback when the child gets the puzzle correct. The voice of the characters sounds a little tinny, at times.

Felt Board 1.1 [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This is likely to inspire creative play. This would be good for teaching vocabulary such as turnip, wheelchair, compass, or silo. It is nice that the camera can be turned off. The directions are nice. The pictures are colorful and playful. They look like real felt.
Improvements When I scroll down to choose pieces, sometimes I accidentally grab a picture that I don't intend to grab--maybe if the picture frame was slightly wider this wouldn't happen so easily.
Perhaps the math symbols could be expanded to greater than/less than.
General review This brings back memories of my kindergarten when felt boards were used. This is open ended enough that children can play/create a lot of scenes. I love that a person can glue the body pieces where he/she wants them. I would like to see a few more props like a firefighter's hose. This is a nice application.

Heidi story collection - 3 in 1, Version 1.0 [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked There are many activities. I learned facts about animals and the Matterhorn that I didn't know previously. The story had places that could be touched that made it more interactive. The rectangle that followed along with the reading was a great feature. This will help the struggling reader.
Improvements The grandfather doesn't appear to be grumpy or gruff. I would like to see a little of that. The story talks about him being that way. At times, the text overlaps with the pictures which makes it hard to read. The spelling and grammar are definitely not American English. Sometimes the characters seem 2 dimensional. They are talked about so briefly that it is hard to relate to them.
General review Our girls loved the Heidi (Shirley Temple) movies when they were younger. This app celebrates a great story. Besides a beautifully illustrated story, this has some unique activities, as well. The jokes were corny cute; the find the differences were challenging; the facts and quizzes were interesting. It was great that it had two reading levels.

Cinderella : 3D Pop-up Fairy Tale v1.0 [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked My teenage daughter was interested in this app. It has fun interactive pages. I liked the chapter headings so that I could skip what I had previously read. It is good that it allows the child to read it or the narrator. The music is upbeat and appropriate.
Improvements Cinderella is such a common story, I would like to see more unique plot twists in this or a non-traditional Cinderella. I like the forgiveness twist because it is unique. When a child doesn't complete the interactive tasks-there isn't a reminder or hint as to what he is supposed to do. I would like a hint. A few more illustrations would help break up the text.
General review Even my teenage daughter liked this application! The narrator voice is pleasant and soothing. This has fun interactive tasks. The interactive tasks made sense to the story. The sister's behavior when she was trying on the shoe cracked me up! This story teaches forgiveness-- many versions of this book, don't teach it. What a great concept to emphasize to children.

The Legend of Momotaro - Version 1.0 [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This is an interesting story. I liked the humility of the hero. I liked the themes of working together, praying, overcoming adversities. This has a definite Japanese feel to it with the type of buildings and the narrator voice. My teenaged daughter liked tracing to practice the writing. The directions are clear and well done.
Improvements Sometimes the word ogre was capitalized and sometimes it wasn't. When it is used as a proper noun it should be capitalized like Ogre King, but otherwise it shouldn't. The ogres might look more menacing if they weren't so brightly colored. They are almost cute. Even if they were all the same bright color I think it would improve it.
General review The illustrations are stunning. The pot bubbling, leaves falling,etc. make it more interesting. This has nice vocabulary such as demeanor, vanquished, plundered. The journey seemed to take a while, I started to wonder when the characters would reach the ogres. This is nicely done.

Thumbelina : 3D Pop-up Fairy Tale v1.0 [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This is a fairy tale that hasn't been redone as much as other ones have. This makes it more of a fresh story. The narrator voice is pleasant. The games were creative. I liked that the child was helping friends in some of them. The index is a convenient feature.
Improvements One of the sentences in the text starts with "and". Sentences in English should never start with a conjunction. That sentence feels more like a fragment. The soil in the game looks like a chocolate chip cookie. If it had more irregular edges, I think it would look more like soil,
General review What a great story! The illustrations are lovely. It includes problem solving, friends helping friends, and following directions. The interactive games fit the story closely. The whack a mole game was especially fun. The arrows that pointed out what the child should do next were helpful.

The Meeting App 1.1.2 [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked It is easy to edit text, create templates, set-up meetings, and delegate tasks. I like the integration with Dropbox. The directions have improved from your previous edition. They are more detailed. I like that I can change the setting for whether I automatically invite myself to meetings.
Improvements Under your FAQ you have many grammatical, syntax errors. Under categories-working with categories, the sentence, "The Meeting App ..." should contain the word "with". Under tap to modify -edit,delete, the word "grapping" is used. Do you mean grasping, grappling, or grabbing? This may be a word used in your part of the world? Under delegating tasks, the sentence, "Once the task has been...", doesn't have a person doing the action. It should say, "you can assign a due date." A person must have operating system 6 IOS to have this program work correctly.
General review I like that the price of this application is lower than it was previously. The instructional video and directions are helpful. This application allows for the artistic, type that need to doodle, draw or mind map information or for the more cerebral types that use text, photos, audio, etc. This is handy for delegating tasks. It allows for setting up meetings quickly. I like that you can add multiple pages of notes. I was unable to use audio.

Creativium - Paper Theater [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This is an attractive, well thought out application. There are clever, unique graphic actions such as the owl opening only one eye, or the fox showing up. The music and artwork are nice. The photos help give a person ideas of what can be done. Adding a pirate allows for even more unique storytelling.
Improvements I think it would be helpful to have directions within the application. If the objects were labeled with the name it could help with literacy skills (castle, raccoon). I would like to see the people and castle a little larger. It would be nice to have more variety in the props maybe a pirate's chest of gold, a moat, or draw bridge.
General review My daughters liked trying this app. It has some nice attention getting attributes with animals, clouds and sounds. The apples falling off the tree is a nice touch. This will be great for storytelling. I would like to see more choices of props. I would like to see a smaller snail.

Tomo Garage 1.0 [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This is colorful and interesting for a child. The music is positive and jazzy. I like that you can change settings for music, voice on/off, upper case or lower case and British versus American. I like that it lets a child know if his answer is correct or incorrect. I like that it works on spelling skills.
Improvements I had a hard time figuring out the difference between the voices for British and American. I thought that all the voices sounded British. I would like to see a progression from 3-4 letter words such as saw to longer words like scooter (going from easier to match to harder to match.). You skip around with shorter and longer.
General review This is great for teaching letter matching both upper case and lower case. It has great, cheerful reinforcement for correct answers. My male students are crazy about scooters, trucks and tools, this is ideal. I would like to see some directions, it was confusing, at times.

Meet the Insects: Village Edition (1.0.0) [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This has all kinds of facts and features. The video and photos are stunning. Even the yellow added notes are interesting. I like the way it tells the features that make butterfly different from a moth or other types of bugs. The observation journal is a great way to encourage more independent learning.
Improvements Under Oriental Longheaded Locust it says, " To hide from predators it uses colors to camouflage to hide from the predators." This statement is redundant. Under Cricket Teleogryllus, on the word forewings, the f is on a different line than the rest of the word, which is confusing.
General review My daughter, whom volunteers at a zoo, loves the videos in this app. The photos are stunning. This includes the scientific names and facts about bugs. It has quizzes to help solidify the learning. I wish a person didn't have to buy the forest edition to get all of the varieties of insects. Sometimes the text would overlap from the main page and later pages.


Link to the App Store

What I liked I like the written list, this helps with literacy skills. This is a unique, engaging set up. Giving children choices is always a way to keep their interest. I like that the entire app is building up to the party at the end. This will make it helpful for sequencing skills.
Improvements By using the diminutative form of the words "fishy, kitty" you are making this book more for a younger audience-- more younger child. I think this would lend itself to a memory game for an additional activity. It was a little confusing, in places what to do next. The narrator's voice sounds a little stuffed up, nasal, but it is a cute voice.
General review The artwork is adorable! This is engaging. The rhymes are clever. I would recommend this for preschoolers. I would like to see directions. This has good vocabulary such as shamrock, daisy and lizard. This froze up on the clothes shop one time, but, we went back to the beginning and it went through it fine.

Wubbzy's Fire Engine Adventure [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked This is great fun. I liked that the games worked on counting and the alphabet. The comprehension questions were a good idea. The fire safety information was a nice addition. There are a lot of fun interactive items in the story read to them, that are fun.
Improvements It would be nice to have another level in the games with a more randomized use of the letters or numbers. If the child didn't do anything for the counting game there was no hint to let him/ her know what to do. The flawless painting wouldn't improve motor skills, since all it required was to touch the area.
General review This story has nice alliteration and rhyme (oodles of noodles) that make it fun. This story is ideal for preschool through 1st graders. The "you're a hero" music video has a great theme and was the most entertaining of the videos. I didn't like the flawless painting because It didn't require hardly any motor skills from the child, but for the extremely handicapped,it would work well. I like the choices of having it read to you or reading it.

He is Risen, An Easter Story [text]

Link to the App Store

What I liked The pictures are well done. The games are fun for children. The story is well written. Since this is for children, it is good that it left out the more bloody aspects of the crucifixion. It is obvious that you tried to use vocabulary that young children would understand. You have good questions for family discussion.
Improvements I would like to see a mention of the fact that it wasn't just "bad men" that did this to Jesus, but that it was to pay for all of our sins. This is an essential part of the story--that we are all sinners. I don't like errorless coloring because it doesn't help motor skills as much as regular coloring.
General review This story is well thought out and interesting. The activities are entertaining and have different levels of difficulty. The text is highlighted as it is read which helps emerging readers. What I don't care for is some of the liberties taken with the story. It has Daniel saying that Jesus looked happy right before he died.