Crawl, Walk, Game: Duck, Duck, Moose

Written by on May 30, 2013 in [, , ]

My husband gave me an iPad for Mother’s Day 2010. Our daughter Allison was only 11 months old at the time, but she was very interested in the tablet.

The first app I ever downloaded for her was Wheels on the Bus HD by Duck, Duck, Moose ($1.99 for iPad). We were both delighted at the way you slid a finger on the bus door to make it open and shut, open and shut. Just touching the right part of the picture didn’t do the trick—the motion itself was important.

At age one, Wheels on the Bus was just her speed, but, enchanted, I downloaded every Duck, Duck, Moose app that was available at the time. Fish School was cute, but she wasn’t ready for counting. Park Math was way too advanced for her at the time, but she liked feeding the hippopotamus. By the time she was three, she understood making the two sides of the seesaw balance, and sorting puppies by size. Park Math HD ($1.99 for iPad) is a great game that grows with your child.

Itsy Bitsy Spider HD ($1.99 for iPad) is an interactive song more than anything, but the interaction is so much more than you’d expect. One of Allison’s favorite parts is that on the second trip up the spout, easter eggs (for real!) begin to appear and if you touch them, they’ll move to the spider’s back. She’ll carry the eggs on her back until depositing them in her web at the end of the song.

The game that captured her attention for probably a year straight though was Baa Baa Black Sheep ($1.99 for iPhone). It’s what she calls a “finding game.” As you make your way through the nursery rhyme, you find things like sunglasses, peanuts and beach balls. Find them all and get MORE stuff to find. It’s pretty addictive, so you might want to turn off the music after a while.

Lately, Allison has been trying Duck, Duck, Moose offerings that are a little more advanced: Namely Princess Fairy Tale Maker ($1.99 for iPad) and Superhero Comic Book Maker HD ($1.99 for iPad). The princess one is skewed heavily female. It is jam-packed with tiaras, fairies, mermaids, and sparkly things.

The superhero app is more gender-balanced—though there are many more male heroes than female to choose from. Both apps are robust creative tools. Kids can color, apply animated stickers, then record a narration and play it back. With just a little help from mom or dad for littler kids you can upload the videos to YouTube. Check out Allison’s fairytale:

Now, she’s barely four. Older kids can get much more sophisticated. This is actually pretty fun for adults to play with!

Duck, Duck, Moose has won a bunch of awards for their apps including 15 Parents Choice Awards and 14 Children’s Technology Review Editor’s Choice Award for Excellence in Design. There is a lot of shovelware out there for kids. I always trust Duck, Duck, Moose for high-quality, engaging and educational games. That’s why I have so many of them!

In my next column I’ll be conducting an experiment. Between TV, games, DVDs, and videos on her iPad, just how much screen time is Allison getting per day?


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Author: Christa Charter View all posts by

2 Comments on "Crawl, Walk, Game: Duck, Duck, Moose"

  1. Elaine May 30, 2013 at 11:11 am - Reply

    This is really well timed. I’ve been thinking about getting some more educational apps/games for my three year old. Do you happen to know if the Duck Duck: Moose games are also released on Android?

  2. Christa Charter May 30, 2013 at 12:04 pm - Reply

    Yes! Itsy Bitsy Spider and Wheels on the Bus are both available for Android :) I bet your 3 year old will enjoy the fun facts the little fly talks about in Itsy Bitsy…they’re so curious about the world at that age!

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