There are quite a few children’s interactive books that are available for the iPad. They are pretty similar in what they offer, in the way of activities that compliment the book. Their price will range as well. I found the ones that offer more in the way of content are on the higher side; however, you do get more for your money. One interactive children’s book in particular fits this bill, Miss Spider’s Tea Party. This is a wonderful children’s storybook published by Callaway Arts & Entertainment.
Miss Spider’s Tea Party is an iPad exclusive, which was available on the iPad’s launch day. Now when I say exclusive I mean that it is only available for the iPad. There are other interactive books in the Apps Store that will run on your iPhone and iPad. However, they completely lack what Miss Spider’s Tea Party has to offer. The other books will read the story to you, but that’s about it. There are no activities for the kids to play with once the reading is over.
This is what truly makes Miss Spider’s Tea Party great. When the reading is done there is more to explore. I let my 5 year old son, and 8 year old daughter use this app on the iPad. My daughter liked it and found it fun. However, my son was completely and throughly enthralled with it. I couldn’t get my iPad back from him. He loved everything about it, from the story, to the puzzles, to even the matching game.
I sat with him and we played the matching game together. Once that was done, he said that he wanted to watch the computer generated video. Without missing a beat he tapped on the icon that said “Watch”, and the video played instantly. I have to say that this was a gorgeous video. The attention to detail is definitely displayed in this five minute video. After we watched the video my son and I painted some pictures. When we were done with our masterpiece we saved it to the iPad’s Camera Roll using the Green Arrow icon in the lower right-hand corner of the display.
I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Nicholas Callaway, of Callaway Arts & Entertainment. He is the publisher behind Miss Spider’s Tea Party. I had asked Nicholas several questions during our interview, but the one in particular I would like to bring up is when I asked him, “Did you initially have it planned as an iBookstore book, or did you always intend it to be an interactive application…” Nicholas’ response was, “We have always imagined our app creation living in the App Store. The iPad is not just a platform, it’s an entire new medium that unites all the other media…”. I was excited to hear him talk about the iPad this way, and how he sees the works that he publishes as being part of the iPad and App Store ecosystem. You can watch the full interview below.
In my review’s I usually have this section set aside for things that I have found that could use improvement with the application, or I would like to see added. I have to honestly say that With Miss Spider’s Tea Party, I couldn’t find anything that meets the before mentioned criteria. This is a very well thought out application. From when you first tap on the icon to open the app, you are magically transported to the world of Miss Spider’s Tea Party. The music and the voice over is so well done.
This is one app that I have been recommending to our friends that have children. As I mentioned earlier, I couldn’t get my iPad back from my son because he was so taken by this wonderful application. We recently went to dinner, and I brought the iPad with us. The first thing my son went to use was Miss Spider’s Tea Party. Shortly after he started to use it, we had a small crowd of employees form near our table. Everyone thought it was great, and our waitress even said that she could see her daughter using this application. When an application such as this brings parents and children together you know you have transcended.
Photo Credit: Images taken from my Miss Spider’s Tea Party from my iPad