Ellison the Elephant

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Ellison the Elephant App Poster Image
Sweet character shows kids that it's great to be unique.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Ease of Play

Very easy to play. Kids are given prompts for how to "turn" the pages or "tap pictures," or "tap and hold words or paragraph" if you want it repeated again. Finding which images on the screen will make sounds when tapped is by trial and error.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

There is a link from the main menu with links to purchase more apps by the developer or to like the developer on Facebook, become a Twitter follower, or sign up for the email newsletter. A pop-up window asks users to rate the app.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the storybook app Ellison the Elephant encourages kids to feel OK about being different, especially if they have a different voice or aren't considered a "good" singer, and it shows what the support of one caring adult can do in a kid's life. The sound that comes out of Ellison's trunk isn't the same as all the other young elephants. With his mom's encouragement and the support of his imaginary friend, Ellison sees that his sound is not only OK, it's great in its own unique way. Like most Oceanhouse Media storybook apps, this story is beautifully illustrated and can be read by a narrator or read by kids themselves.

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Is it any good?

The message that ELLISON THE ELEPHANT sends to kids about self-acceptance and uniqueness is told in a sweet, non-preachy way. While the artwork is beautiful to look at and the story is engaging, it may be a little long for some younger kids to get through in one sitting, especially since interactivity is limited compared to other apps. Just as with paper books, it's OK to read part of a storybook app and come back for more later, especially when it's as good as Ellison's story. This story's message about learning to love your own "voice,"  whether it be the actual sound that comes out of one's mouth or, more generally, how one relates to the world, is something most kids and adults can appreciate.

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For kids who love books

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