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Feature Review

Snow White
Price: $4.99
Runs on: iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch (iOS 7.0 or later)
Ages: 3-8
For grades: P, K, 1, 2, 3
Teaches: early reading, fairy tales
Languages: English, UK English
Scaffolding: word highlighting, font control
The masters of digital storytelling at Nosy Crow have cleverly ushered another classic fairy tale into the tablet age, with well-crafted child narration, classical music, and characters by artist Ed Bryan.

Unlike last year's Jack and the Beanstalk, this treatment of Snow White follows a traditional start-to-finish storyline, again told by a cast of expert-sounding, British child-narrators. Every tap is rewarded with a proper conversational treat that changes each time.

Features include the ability to zoom in or out of each scene, the ability to tilt the screen to rock baby Snow White to sleep (a clumsy process on our first try), a magic mirror that reflects what is seen by your tablet's front camera, and several simple counting, sorting or collecting games that pull you into the plot. You help to collect gems, wash laundry, and pick (and count) flowers, for example. You even play a role in mixing the poison.

There are some design quirks, but nothing fatal. Fairy tale purists will note the editorial sanding. The original gender-biased, envy-driven murderous plot is more mainstream. One of the dwarves is female ("Barbara") and the happy ending is sans kissing with an ending dance scene that involves some of the same classic moves last seen in Cinderella.

Parent features let you customize the app for younger readers, by turning on scaffolds like word highlighting, and adjusting the time that the text bubbles appear on the screen. Older readers can choose the "read it myself mode." Nobody can make a story flow like Nosy Crow, which qualifies this app as a top choice as an early language enrichment experience that is well worth the download.


CTR Apr 15 Feature Review Entered 03/09/2015 by Warren Buckleitner, Modified 12/19/2016 by LD