A guest blog post by Odile Leveugle, the founder of Applimini.com, a French kids’ apps reviews website, on using our Apps with French-speaking children.
I’m a busy mother of two boys. Félix is 4 and Lucien is 2. Having lived in the UK when I was younger, I’ve still got a real interest for English language and British culture. Since my boys were born, I’ve always thought it would be a valuable inheritance for them to have this “English package” in their cultural background. But you know how it goes: days run fast, kids grow even faster and by the time you find precious moments to teach them a bit of English with songs or games they’re already four years old and old enough to tell you, “Oh no mum, I’m not interested in knowing how to say yellow in English! Come on, tell me about dinosaurs instead… and in French… please!”
When Felix was younger, I managed to have him listening to some English with Peppa Pig or Fireman Sam videos. But he discovered with his school friends that there were Peppa Pig and a “Sam le pompier” in French! From then on, needless to tell you where I could put my videos in English!
And this is where Nosy Crow came to my rescue!
I use the home iPad for my work. On this iPad, the majority of apps are for kids. I usually order them randomly on purpose… just to see which apps attract my kids the most. I’ve got all sorts: puzzles, memory games, interactive stories, song apps… but most of them are in French. The exceptions in English are the Nosy Crow apps.
And as opposed to the video experience, Felix never ends an iPad session without going to Animal SnApp or Bizzy Bear. He just loooooves them! It seems he keeps them for the end just like you do with your favorite meal. You would have thought he would be more attracted by Pip and Posy because it does not require much English comprehension. But no… Animal SnApp takes the lead.
The other day he was playing with his playmobil toys in his room and he was saying “One… two … three… four”… up to ten. I asked him “Where did you learn to count in English? I remember teaching you when you were a baby but not since then!”. His answer was: “With the cow and sheep on the iPad”.
Lucky boy to grow with Cuddly Cow!
Thank you, Odile, for sharing your experience! As well as teaching counting in Cuddly Cow and Higgly Hen’s stories, Animal SnApp is also great for early literacy skills: some of the benefit of rhyming stories are discussed in this post.
You can find Animal SnApp on the App Store here – and you can also find French-language editions of some of our apps – including Cinderella, The Three Little Pigs, and Bizzy Bear – from our apps partner Gallimard here.