Hare reckons he can run fast, but he is too small to achieve much in the Animal Sports Competition. He bravely races against a cheetah, takes on a kangaroo in the long jump and tries to out jump a giraffe in the high jump. Spurred on by determination and a strong spirit, he throws, jumps, runs and vaults his way cheerfully through two days of competition. He has not won any events, but he has had a great time.
Then, to his surprise, his new-found parrot friend tells him that he has just competed in, and won, a decathlon. All the other animals, including the omnipresent family of meerkats that pop up on every page, join together to cheer the worthy little winner. Brought to you by Interact Books, this elegantly designed story app is also available as a print book. Plenty of website support is available with free themed resources, certificates, a teamwork challenge pack, downloadable game cards and other learning resources.
There are options to read independently or for the story to be narrated by a kind and comforting voice. All navigation is sensibly managed from the lower right hand corner of the screen. Forward and back page turns situated in the top corners prevent the annoyance of accidental turns whilst exploring the picture.
And a child will spend plenty of time exploring these pictures. Bugs and insects wriggle, fly and crawl across your screen, baboons practise rhythm gymnastics in the jungle and hints are available if little fingers and curious minds are unable to find all of the hidden interactions – and there are plenty of them. Some are integral to the story: some are there to just make the reader giggle.
There is plenty to discuss about the values which are subtly woven into the story. Whether you are planning an Olympic event or just want to share a gentle story about values like perseverance and friendship, this rich, colourful and thoughtfully written app is definitely one to buy and share.
Age range: 3 – 9
Educational value: rhyming and rhythmic language; 7 Olympic and Paralympic values; imaginative storytelling
Fun rating: 4/5
Educational rating: 4/5