My first 2 children were girls so when I discovered that we were pregnant with our third and that this baby was a boy, I naturally wondered whether it would be different to the girls.
I guess I come down on the ‘nurture’ side a bit more and I always thought that the stereotypical differences between kids are caused by the way they are raised more than being ‘baked in’ genetically. BUT … in the first few years of raising this gorgeous boy my eyes have been opened haha
He has an insatiable love of anything with wheels and in particular loves to sprint to the front of the house to see the garbage truck do its business every single week! That is certainly not something that I introduced him too and it’s so different to my girls.
When I was recently asked to test drive a new Thomas & Friends™: Read & Play app for my iPad, I jumped at the chance. I’m a big believer in finding opportunities to teach kids in ways that they are motivated to try. I know my boy loves Thomas and so being able to explore the characters’ worlds with such beautiful and familiar images and sounds and video was really great.
The app is very interesting … it offers a library of interactive read-to-me audio books, videos and fun activities that are built to provide fun learning experiences for kids and fans of Thomas & Friends. I love that it’s also AD-FREE because a lot of the kids apps I have tried tend to work for a while and then display an ad which isn’t always appropriate and disrupts the experience with a big distraction!
When you download the app it loads with various sections for books, videos and activities. Each item is rated for the type of age that it is aimed at but obviously, these are a guide and you can just select any that you think are suitable.
The first section are books which are essentially stories to follow with your child. There is some interactivity on various pages to keep it interesting such as simple action and response activities like touching a part of the image to hear a particular sound or word … It was good to try these out on the free version first.
Since my son is so young, the video section is great. He can watch official Thomas & Friends videos in the app without any advertisements or other random content. My son can also navigate this by himself for short periods when I need to get something done 🙂
There is also a special iPAD-only feature of creative drawing tools and fun Thomas & Friends™ stickers for children to embrace their creative side. They can take photos, use image stickers, painting tools like coloured pencils/chalk and text to make amazing pages of their own … plus they can save those to send to friends or relatives.
The app itself is free and includes content of all types across the age groups. There is then a monthly or yearly subscription which allows users to download new content released each week. The monthly subscription will be $4.99 and the yearly fee to be $49.99 for early birds. The content can be downloaded as you need it saving space on your tablet or phone.
My boy is loving this app and as usual I have to ration his access to it! He’s only 2 so I generally work with him and the device but that has become a regular activity recently exploring all of the content and downloading new content as it becomes available each week.
The best way to get the app is to search for “Thomas & Friends: Read & Play” in the App Store or open this article on your mobile device and click here