If asked, children can generally re-tell the fable of “The Tortoise and the Hare.” Using this tale as a starting point, Sheldon's Bedtime Stories: The Golden Trophy tells its own story about Sheldon the Tortoise after the race is over. It will appeal to children ages 2-6 who are already familiar with these characters and recognize what they stand for.
Sheldon's Bedtime Stories: The Golden Trophy, by Bee Square, is designed specifically for the iPad. The app contains a preschool level interactive story, along with two mini-games based on the same characters; the games include “Tap a Mole,” and “Puzzle.” There are ten different translations available in this app: English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Catalan, Portuguese, Russian, Turkish, and Chinese. The user interface here is pretty intuitive; accessing the parent portal is achieved by simply pressing and holding the upper left circle for 3 seconds. The upper right circle switches the written subtitles on and off, and the story arrows are located on the right and left edges.
Have a look:
The main character, Sheldon the Tortoise, has returned to a quiet, peaceful life in the pond after winning his famous race with the hare. The Golden Trophy takes place after the race is finished, and it answers the question, “What might have happened next?” The hare, who everyone figured was a sore loser, sneaks into Sheldon’s house with his buddies and steals Sheldon’s trophy. The rest of the story involves chase scenes and mad dashes through the forest. I won’t spoil the ending for you, but it is a happy one.
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Where this app shines is in its animation. Some of my favorite animations in The Golden Trophy involve the transition between light and dark; others are layered effects, in which one animation occurs almost on top of another one, giving an interesting sense of motion and confusion. Well done!
The inspiration behind The Golden Trophy is very clever. Children enjoy stories, but are often left wondering what happens to the characters after the story is over. Out of this natural curiosity, a story is created. Unfortunately, The Golden Trophy starts out with a good idea, but in the middle of the story, it goes off in a totally unexpected direction, and then, it abruptly ends. This lack of continuity is a little hard to follow in my opinion, but this drawback is offset by its cute characters and fun interactive elements.
Overall, it's a fun and different take on a children's classic story.
Sheldon's Bedtime Stories: The Golden Trophy is availabe for download via the iTunes App Store - iPad
RRP - $0.99/£0.69/€0.89
At the time of the review, The Golden Trophy contains no ads, although it does have a link to theiTunes store through the parent portal. Other than that, there are no links to the web or to social media.
Review by Julie Peterson, a speech/language pathologist (SLP) currently working in a school setting, serving children with special needs age 6-14.
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Disclosure: This review was move up the waiting list priority-services. All opinions expressed are purely that of the author.