Elmo Loves ABCs for iPad By Sesame Street

Many children I know from the age of 1 up love Elmo. This app by Sesame Street uses Elmo and other characters from Sesame Street to help children learn the ABCs.

The app is packed with activities and games including tracing the letters (both lower and upper case), videos where other Sesame Street characters or Elmo show objects that start with that letter, and coloring books where you drag your finger to color the objects (again that start with the letter).

It also has an activity where the objects are hidden behind either bubbles, leaves, or balloons. And you use your finger either to pop or rake them to find the hidden objects. Smaller children lose hours doing this.

My complaints are minor, but enough not to give it 5 stars. No android version exists. The application is very large and not only does it take a long time to download, but also takes up a lot of space on your iPad. Although kids love Elmo’s voice, it will get irritating to the parents quickly (especially since on some activities Elmo repeats the same phrases over and over). Some of the buttons are not clear and might confuse the younger children (the slider is hard to master, and the function of the star on the left bottom is not clear).

Overall a great app. I would highly recommend getting the free version (limited to the first three letters).

It is available only on the Apple App Store for $4.99 for the full version and there is also a free trial version.

Counting Bear by GrasshopperApps.com

The game consists of different number of objects on the screen that get counted as the chid clicks on them. At the end of counting the app provides words of encouragement. The interface is clean. The pictures that are used for counting are beautiful. The voice that counts is clear. It should provide hours of fun for a toddler, although the constant counting is fairly annoying to adults.

What makes this app stand out are the options. Not only are you able to change the minimal and max number to use, but you can change the objects used by providing your own photos and voice, change the words of encouragement, and even change how numbers are pronounced.

With all these options you can customize the app to be a very special app for you your child. For example, you can change the objects to count be people or things that your child loves: favorite pet, the neighbor’s dog, or even dad or mom. The voice counting could be the voice of mom or dad, and the words of encouragement could be from the grandparents.

Fairly simple concept with many options make this app a great educational app for your toddler. Sadly only available on the Apple App Store