A beautifully designed interactive story book for children aged 3-6 years old which follows the adventures of Lilly, a frilled-neck lizard, who is searching for her friends.
All Grown Up is an app designed by Buffle Books, written by Christopher Cotton, which brings us along on a journey with Lilly, a frilled-neck lizard. Although the app is designed for children between the ages of 3-6 years old, it is equally enjoyable for the parent interacting along with them!
Lilly’s story is a wonderfully created one which takes us through her search for her missing friends. Along the way, we find her friends and begin to learn that, although her friends are often away living their own lives and having their own experiences, it doesn’t mean they don’t continue to care for Lilly.
Along with the interactive story, full of activities for the child and parent, there are also memory card games and a quiz.
An interactive story with, or without, narration
An auto-play feature for the story
Memory card game
Fully interactive with taps and touches for the child to enjoy
The quality of this app is quite top-notch and enjoyable for both child and parent to interact with. Not only is Lilly’s story entertaining to follow, but the graphics and the level of reader interaction are some of the best I’ve ever seen in an app.
The characters are well designed with bright big eyes and they move around the screen on their own and through the user interacting with them. This all happens quite smoothly with great audio effects. I experienced no lag in the app and when the app encouraged me to tap or swipe on a character, it reacted without issues or delay. It’s obvious that the app developers spent a great deal of time perfecting the quality of this application.
The narrating voices are clear and easy to understand with a very slight Australian-sounding accent. Both the memory game and the quiz are also quite smooth and well-designed. There is no way to turn the sound effects off, however you could always just mute your device if you’re not interested in listening to the various beeps and bops and buzzes!
The main lesson taught to us by Lilly in the interactive storybook portion of the All Grown Up app is that, although Lilly’s friends have their own busy lives to lead and are often away, they are still there and continue to care for Lilly.
While reading through the story the child and parent have the option of tapping on any one of the words from the text which are present at the bottom of the screen. Once tapped, the narrator will speak the word which helps in the development of the child’s vocabulary and there are also “fun facts” which, once tapped, provide the reader with some additional information about the character on the screen, such as just what do frilled-neck lizards eat?!
The memory game consists of five levels and is the traditional card matching game where the child is presented with a number of cards face down. They are then able to flip over the cards by tapping them, in search of a match. Each level passed leads to a more difficult level with more cards to match.
The quiz portion of the application consists of ten questions about the story, specifically questions relating to Lilly and the various characters involved in the story. Both the memory game and the quiz provide the child with a great deal of positive feedback and encouragement along the way.
There is no doubt that this app is quite entertaining with many interactive activities built into the story. For example, touching a “boom-box” in one of the slides initiates some dance-style music which, in turn, gets Lilly dancing on the screen and the child can spin her around with their finger. The other characters within the story also have their own way of allowing the user to interact with them and it’s all quite enjoyable and humorous.
Although there’s the potential that a memory game and quiz might be boring for some kids or fail to keep their attention on the app, the designers of All Grown Up have incorporated more character interactions within these sections to help keep the child’s attention on the task at hand. Also, as was previously mentioned, the included positive reinforcement throughout the app definitely increases the enjoyment and entertainment value in the app.
This is a universal app, so it works on all your iOS devices including the iPhone, iPad and the iPod Touch all for one payment of $1.99. The are no in-app-purchases (thankfully!) to pull you into added costs and the price tag is on par with other apps of this type and quality.
The fact that the app includes the addition of the memory game and the quiz on top of the storybook component itself, really does provide some added value in this app and will hopefully keep your child coming back for more!
The developers of this application have taken many steps in its design to ensure it is friendly to children and parents alike. There are narrator options for the pre-reader and vocabulary-building activities for the new and developing reader.
The app interface is fairly straight forward and easy to figure out, but there are some visual cues in certain sections of the story to let the user know that they can spin Lilly around with a swipe of their finger while she’s dancing for example.
There are no ads or social media sharing options built into the app for the child to have access to and if the parent activates the parental locking feature located within iOS, the child user can be free to tap, swipe and pat their way around the story with ease.