Draw on the Table - Spark Studios / Frances England


Title: Santa's Merry Band

DeveloperSpark Studios / Frances England

Compatibility: iPad / iPhone / iPod touch // iOS 5.1

Size: 30.9 MB

DescriptionNote: This app may no longer be available for new downloads.  My apologies for any inconvenience.

There are many other drawing apps available, but the number that feature a song from San Francisco's Frances England numbers exactly one.  It's a pretty simple one -- the user chooses a food (blueberries, broccoli, coffee, strawberries, etc.) from the top of the screen, and then drags it across the "table" at the center.  In the case of liquids (coffee, orange juice) and some solids, the user "drops" them and then tilts the screen to direct where they roll.  (So it's a physics puzzler, too!)  You may not realize that there are more foods available than what's shown at top -- that menu scrolls left and right.  As with most art apps, you can share with the world via various methods.

This won't change the world, but as a fun (and free) experiment (with, I repeat, a song from Frances England), it may be worth the 31 MB on your iDevice to amuse your littlest ones.

Age Range: 3 through 7

Price: Free


Toca Band - Toca Boca

Title: Toca Band

DeveloperToca Boca

Compatibility: iPad / iPhone / iPod touch // iOS 5.0

Size: 48.9 MB

Description:  The most musical of the many playful apps from the Swedish app powerhouse, Toca Band is probably the most intuitive and repeatable "make your own music" app.  There are roughly 15 different characters, each one with a unique musical sound -- the rapper, the "la la la" lady, the beat-maker, the thingy that looks like a harp.  If you've used any Toca Boca app, you know the recognizable but slightly daffy drawings that populate them.  The user can move each character (up to 7 in all) onto 3 levels of platforms -- the higher the level, the more complex the music each character makes.  There's a fourth "star" platform that lets the character "solo" (pursuant to your child's touch commands).  The notes are all synchronized to the same melody.  It's a great melody, actually, but you'll probably get tired of it 5 to 10 minutes after you start playing it.  And you (or, rather, your kid), will probably play with it at least 5 to 10 minutes at a time.

So, yeah, if there were a second or third song, that would be great.  Also, just because of screen size, it works better on the iPad.  Toca Band does one thing really well and, from a parent's perspective, almost too well.

Age Range: 2 through 7

Price: $2.99

Link: iTunes