(iPad 2+ – $2.99; iBooks – $1.99)
I hadn’t heard anything about Moving Christmas prior to downloading it, so I didn’t have any expectations. When I opened it, I was immediately entranced. Christmas had come early to my iPad! While this story is not your everyday Christmas tale, it will quickly become one of your favourites.
When Santa’s workshop at the North Pole falls victim to the effects of climate change, Claus and company need a hero: someone to help the village and save Christmas! They find Frank Duffy – Mover of the IMPOSSIBLE, but can Frank help Santa and save Christmas? Download it and find out! That is Top-Secret.
Moving Christmas has familiar parts that are similar to one of our favourite Christmas tales, but it is nothing like the regular stories. It is a one of a kind humorous adventure. While it has the same features as other quality storybook apps, I was in awe of the illustrations, holiday music and special effects.
As an educator, I feel that it is important to do more than just read aloud in order for children to tune in. The narrator has done an outstanding job, and the tone and inflection used match the visual imagery presented on each page (in other words, when you see the words getting larger or jiggling, the narrator matches his voice to emphasise these parts). Different “voices” for each of the characters (as well as the narrator), make Moving Christmas come alive. You feel as though you are on the journey with Frank, Santa, Bricks and company.
I would normally want to see some highlighted text that matches the words that are spoken to help emergent readers; however, it is not needed with this book. Sentences appear and disappear when you hear different parts of the story or when characters speak. There are a lot of animations and zany illustrations to keep you guessing and wanting to see more.
The storyline is great for readers young and old, but it is particularly appealing for children aged 6-12 years (as well as the young at heart – me!). I can easily see Moving Christmas being adapted into an animation for television. Not that you need it though, when you have the app to view all the time!
I would gladly use it in the classroom in the lead-up to Christmas. There are a lot of teachable moments in this great storybook app from the time you open it. I could easily use it as a platform to discuss global warming. It could also be used for activities such as:
- Writing a letter from Frank to a relative describing what happened (or from another perspective, such as Bricks),
- Predictions about what will happen next,
- Self-beliefs and overcoming events in our lives,
- A poster about one of the characters,
- Investigating the elements of the text,
- and more…
I am Christmas-wrapped in this quirky tale. Moving Christmas is exciting and engaging with excellent graphics and an even more excellent narrator! I would expect to pay around $4.99 or greater, and I would gladly pay it. However, you can download it in iTunes for $2.99 (or iBooks $1.99). Ho Ho Ho.
Check out the video below to see more: