October 9, 2015

Skill Building with “Fiete” Apps | Touch and Go

A cheerful sailor named Fiete invites children to join him on a number of his daily activities in a series of colorful apps produced by Ahoiii Entertainment. The apps will have kids flexing their pre- reading and numeracy skills and challenging their memories.

Schubert’s “Death and the Maiden” on the iPad | Touch and Go


Our reviewer Pam Schembri cites the performers’ commentary as one of the strengths of this production, and calls it “a treasure for both professionals, students of music, and dabblers.”

Moobot’s Back with “Billy’s Booger” in Digital | Touch and Go

Billy’s Booger: As described on the Moonbot site, this “highly anticipated,” “completely (sorta) true story from William Joyce’s experience in the fourth grade” has been “40 years in the ‘picking.’” And it’s now available in digital.

The Bard Gets Bawdier |”Ryan North’s To Be or Not to Be” | Touch and Go

Studying parody or William Shakespeare’s Hamlet in class? Looking for retelling of a classic with an unusual twist? Don’t miss “Ryan North’s To Be or Not to Be,” now in digital.

Iain Pears’s Multilayered “Arcadia” | Touch and Go

With no desire to thrust himself “into the vanguard of digital innovation,” Iain Pears nonetheless finds himself there with publication of “Arcadia.” The author notes, “…I undertook the project because I had reached the limit of my storytelling in book form and needed some new tools to get me to the next stage.”

“Toca Nature”: “A Perfectly Pixelated World” | Touch and Go

Many readers know Toca Boca’s “play studio” apps designed for preschoolers. Here is something from them that’s a little different. It combines sandbox activities with a subtle ecological message.

A “Completely and Utterly Disgusting” Game, Among Others | Touch and Go

With only a few weeks left before summer is over, it’s time to download a few playful apps. While fun and games rule, you’ll discover that planning, strategy, and skill also come into play. Oh, yes, and then there’s that “completely and utterly disgusting” game for fans of Roald Dahl.

Ebook Vendors Anticipate Big Five Licensing Terms Becoming More Flexible

After years of expressing concern about the potential impact that library lending might have on consumer sales, major publishers have good cause to take another look at the library market for ebooks, according to executives from library ebook distributors OverDrive, 3M, and Baker & Taylor. With consumer sales growth slowing, bolstering institutional sales will likely become more of a priority for major publishers. OverDrive CEO Steve Potash noted that publishers, like all for-profit companies, are always looking for growth, and “there’s still a lot a growth in institutions, and there [are] significant opportunities for growth in education…. If retail is flattening, you have to experiment.”

More “Endless” Fun | Touch and Go

Originator has won high praise for its “Endless” apps—a playful educational series that focuses on basic reading and math readiness skills. Their latest release is an introduction to Spanish for children learning it as a first or second language.

Warren Buckleitner Curates a Starter Set of Apps

You might say that the iPad’s been cursed by its own success—full of mid-to-low quality apps that tease kids with free offers. Here’s a starter list of better apps, with something for every youngster.