Paddle Duck – a swimmingly perfect app for toddlers

Finding terrific apps for toddlers that go beyond basic shapes, counting and colours can be tricky – there seems to be a leap from the very basic apps to those that are all bells and whistles. However, an adorable little duck changes that.

PaddleDuck Learning’s first app, Paddle Duck in “Where’s Carrie Cat?”, introduces basic counting within the context of a simple story, songs and age-appropriate interactive elements.

There’s some noteworthy features that separate this app from others. Firstly, the bright, clear graphics and sweet animal characters have strong appeal (they’re the creation of Yiying Lu, the designer responsible for the world renowned Twitter ‘Fail Whale’).

Secondly, the app encourages kids to put their device down and dance!  “Where’s Carrie Cat?” includes a jolly original song, ‘Paddle Duck Waddle’, which is accompanied by some simple dance moves. Helpfully, the words to the song are included in the ‘Learning Notes’ section of the app. Most importantly, the music and songs in Paddle Duck won’t drive parents mad if they are played over and over (or is it only me that gets sick of hearing music on loop?!).

Lastly, Paddle Duck is very, very cute and although you might not want to say good-bye at the end of the story, I think parents will appreciate the very clear ‘goodbye-this-is-the-end-of-the-app’ message. Or in other words, ‘your time with the device is over’!

Paddle Duck in “Where’s Carrie Cat?” for iPad is available via iTunes for $4.49. It is suitable for toddlers aged 18 months and over.

Katrina Whelen

Katrina studied planning and design, did the hard yards working in a big office building and then traded it all in for a relaxing (!) life at home with four children. She now fills her time with writing, completing a degree in genetics and taxiing her children around Melbourne to their various sporting commitments (not necessarily in that order).

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