The other day I was sitting down to plan my garden. I know its still cold out, but I was already deciding where to plant the early crops like peas, potatoes and onions. I was also choosing a sunny spot to plant my lettuce and spinach imagining a fresh garden salad. Then I woke up to snow and my ground breaking plans went on hold for another week.

Preparing for the coming growing season and harvest also had me thinking about my review of  The Cicada and the Ant. It’s an app with a fresh new take on the classic French folk tale. There are three reading modes to choose from: Interactive Story, I Read Myself, and Animated Story. You’ll find lots of interactive opportunities throughout the book in the interactive mode. You can help the ant cut wood or encourage the cicada to sing with the simple tap of the screen.  The interactions are scattered through each scene and marked with twinkling stars for easy location. I liked that the words of the story are highlighted as they are read to help with fluency and recognition.

This highlighted reading prompt is included in the animated mode as well. Here the story plays out like a movie, requiring no involvement from you. It would be a nice rest time or nap time book. When using Read Myself, the focus is placed on building reading skills and the interactions are turned off.

I always like stories with a message and the lessons of not procrastinating and being prepared are well illustrated. However, when running the app I had stability issues.  I’m sure once the developers add their “bug” fixes the Cicada and the Ant will become a favorite story.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this app for review purposes.

About The Author


When is come to the gadgets, gizmos and whats-its of the modern world, her three kids keep her up to speed. Whether its watching yet another iTunes card go up in smoke while music downloads at the speed of sound, teenage blogging, term paper research or the youngest studying spelling and math facts, she tries to ignore how many hours are logged on the hand held devices in her home. All that being said, the growth and learning the gizmos provide never cease to amaze her.

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