Can you get creative with your iPad?
Wanting to get your children creative but aware that TV and the iPad are likely to have a role in their playtime? Hopster may not have been the first place to look for support but maybe it should be on your list.
The world often seems intent on demonising parents who let their children loose on screens of any kind but most of us with children would agree that TV in moderation is unavoidable, if not beneficial for all involved, and good children’s apps can be a blessing! This is never more true than in the school holidays.
For many parents those few moments when your child is engaged with their favourite TV show or app can be a real sanity-saver. So long as parents steer children towards good apps and ensure screen-time is balanced with other forms of play there is no reason to feel guilty about this being a feature whilst at home.
In fact at Fundamentally Children, we’re constantly delighted to see how much children learn from their screen-time (my own included) and how they can really inspire their creative side. However, we regularly hear from parents quite rightly worried about their children’s use of YouTube, struggling to avoid adverts on mainstream TV channels or looking for advice on good quality learning apps that are actually fun.
That’s why we’ve been so impressed by the Hopster app – we’ve remained strong champions of the app since we first reviewed it a year ago. It’s easy to see why children would love an app full of their favourite shows (Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom, Thomas and Friends, Bob the Builder…) and why parents would be delighted by a safe app devoid of adverts, but there is so much more to it than that.
The interface is brilliantly designed for small children – avoiding words and the classic grid based design it’s really playful. It manages to provide plenty of choice (which children love) without being overwhelming and makes it easy for them to control their own viewing. In fact just the tree itself with it’s many interactive characters keeps me amused for a while, never mind the children, and I love the peaceful birds in the background!
However, for the Good App Guide, what really stands out is the inclusion of a range of learning games. We loved the plant growing as well as the Letters, Share and Find games that we reviewed previously and are delighted to see how Hopster keep adding new games without increasing the price tag.
The latest addition is a creativity game encouraging young artists. Whether you have a budding Picasso or more of a painter decorator on your hands (my children certainly fall more into the latter!) this game provides a great interlude between TV shows to stretch your child’s creativity and augment their offline colouring activities.
We particularly like the trace concept giving children structure yet total artistic freedom. Don’t miss looking in the draw for all your art tools and using the play button to replay your child’s drawing from start to finish. Children will also be proud to see their artwork hanging up at the base of the tree when they are done.
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This post was written by Fundamentally Children