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The Ipad, David Tennent And Lynley Dodd

July 28, 2010

You’re probably thinking two things. Now I have an Ipad, what can I do with it, and what has an Ipad got to do with David Tennent, the star of Dr Who, and Lynley Dodd, famous New Zealand author? Well the answer is one and the same.

Penguin New Zealand have released Hairy Maclary from Donaldson’s Dairy on Ipad, with David Tennent doing narration.

Below is a review from wired.

Review: Hairy Maclary hits the iPad  By Daniel Donahoo  [From Wired]

GeekDads will be interested to hear that the narrator for the latest QBook from Kiwa Media is sadly missed Doctor Who star, David Tennant. But that’s about as sci-fi as this classic children’s picture book gets. That said, the interactivity in this iPad text helps take it beyond your standard eBook for kids and offers within a book format many other functionalities you fin in stand alone applications.

Penguin NZ have made a good choice in using Kiwa Media to produce this book/app – and would do well to keep them on board for future publications aimed at younger readers. Why? Well consider the following functionality Hairy Maclary HD offers:

  • The story can be read as a stand alone book, or narrated by David Tennant. Or, you can record your child reading the book and they can play in back
  • Subtle and not annoying background track for the story
  • Interactive images that don’t have too much going on: e.g. dogs wagging tails, or barking if you touch them
  • Each word on the page can be touched to support learning and literacy development
  • A paint function, that allows a child to recolor and paint on the original illustrations
  • Automatic or manual page turning
  • A nice addition at the beginning where a child can fill out a “This book belongs to..” page

It is a book, drawing and recording app all in one. It has good functionality, but nothing that will overwhelm children and takes it beyond many of the standard book apps for children that we see. This makes it worth the higher price point and demonstrates that some publishers can see beyond the traditional book and are interested in how children can develop their reading and literacy skills using an interactive text.

As with all picture books, though, the story and images are paramount. They are retained and not ruined by excessive interaction. The audio is kind to parents ears and the touch screen function allows for children to use the iPad like “digital playdough” manipulating words, sounds and images in playful ways.

This is the first QBook I’ve seen, I look forward to seeing more of them. I’m wondering if this type of book will be able to find a place in the iBook Store. If not, Apple should start working on how to include these interactive books in there right away.

Wired: Intelligent interactivity, not excessive in this children’s classic

Tired: You need an iPad to engage with this one, folks.

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From → Childrens Books

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