This week in children's apps features Ellison the Elephant, a story about an elephant finding his own voice. Also appearing this week is the iPad version of Rudyard Kipling's classic The Jungle Book, which features the whole story and interactive scenes, as well as real-time physics and effects. Finally, there's Be Global, a learning tool for parents and teachers that shows children what it really means to be global, as they visit cultures the world over.
Title: Ellison the Elephant
Publisher: Oceanhouse Media
Release date: January 14, 2012
Background: Ellison wants to sound like everyone else so he tries to make a big trumpet sound like his friends and his sister, but all he gets is a little toot. With encouragement from Mom and provocation from his imaginary friend, Weasel, Ellison discovers his very own voice.
Features: Professional narration, background audio and enlarged artwork, individual words are highlighted as the story is read; read to me, read it myself, and auto paly modes. Find hidden sounds by tapping within the pictures, pages pan and zoom.
Title: The Jungle Book
Publisher: Random House Digital
Release date: December 14, 2011
Background: This app is a fully interactive adventure following Mowgli's journey as he is raised by wolves in the Indian Jungle, searches for acceptance, and ultimately must come face-to-face with his fate and Shere Khan.
Features: Picture book featuring a newly abridged story for children, new original artwork, full narration, dozens of interactive scenes and experiences including animation, real-time physics and sound effects.
Title: Be Global
Release date: January 24, 2012
Background: Learn the goodness in exploring, appreciating, and respecting other children's traditions, religions, and values the world over. Visit the pyramids, eat sushi, say hello in Swahili, and discover what it means to be global.
Features: More than 50 animations and touch-based interactions, journal for players to write, illustrate and share their own global experiences, touch-based quiz game that demonstrates how to say "hello" in multiple languages, coloring activities.