Have an iPhone? Have a kid? If the answers to those questions are “yes”, then proceed immediately to the app store and begin downloading Gif Shop. An animated gif creator that is super intuitive and super fun. This creative possibilities are endless.
There are still a couple of (significant) kinks to be worked out, but even so, this is my favorite iPad app for kids yet. Build a world of characters and props, then bring it all to life by moving them around and speaking the dialog or sound effects. Art Maker records the movements and audio and creates a movie you can play back and enjoy together. The hiccups… the audio can slip out of synch, objects sometimes vanish and there’s no way to save your videos outside of the app (or share them). But I’m hopeful an update will soon arrive to fix these issues in an otherwise awesome app. Learn more by visiting their website or download it from iTunes.
Here’s a fun (and perhaps educational?) way to spend a thirty minutes with your kids. Save some toilet paper rolls, make yourself some binoculars, download the iPhone app called Chirp! (available from iTunes), and go pretend bird watching! Or, if you can go REAL bird watching maybe you should do that. In a pinch, however, this works.
AniMatch. A really nice matching game for your kids. No flexibility in the number of tiles which is a bit of a drag, but the animals are darn cute and sound great.
From birth, our daughter has gone to sleep to a rather untraditional lullaby, Ambient 1: Music for Airports, composed by the brilliant Brian Eno. The four pieces are ‘evolving soundscapes’ designed to approximate the emotional effect of visual art. To us they always have felt like the soundtrack to an amazing dream. We love it. -> iTunes.
Another wonderful creation of Eno’s (in collaboration with musician & software designer Peter Chilvers) is an iPhone app called Bloom. By echoing back patterns you create with simple taps on the screen, you’re able to produce lovely ambient melodies. Most definitely something for every age. Available on iTunes.
We wanted to share some of our favorite iPhone apps for kids. There’s a lot of clutter out there, so we thought this might help parents from having to sift through the pile.
First up, is iWriteWords. It makes great use out of the technological capabilities of the iPhone. A numbered path guides your child as they are challenged to write a variety of short (animal) words, letter by letter. Once you’re done, a voice announces what you’ve spelled accompanied by a child’s drawing of that particular creature.
Our daughter picked it up very quickly and I’m convinced she’s benefited from playing with it. There’s a free “Lite” version of it, but the full version is only $1.99. We love it. Get it from the AppStore.
Our friend Jamey sent us some pics he took at the Wee See launch party in New York using Takayuki Fukatsu’s awesome QuadCamera iPhone app. Even my 3-year old daughter has taken some shots with it that are so beautiful it makes me question whether my arts degree gave me a better or worse eye for composition. It’s a lot of fun for only $1.99. Available from iTunes. Thanks for the photos, Jamey!