Harold and the Purple Crayon

Common Sense Media says

Wonderful adaptation allows kids to "be" Harold's crayon.





What parents need to know

Ease of play

Turning pages is as easy as tapping a "Next" arrow. And while the interactive elements on each page are hidden (to inspire exploration), kids need only to tap a question mark icon to be shown exactly what they should do on any given page. There's also a very clear tutorial kids can watch to learn how they should explore the app.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
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Drinking, drugs, & smoking
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Privacy & safety
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Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Harold and the Purple Crayon is an interactive version of the original classic storybook by Crockett Johnson, in which a young boy goes on an imaginative journey, creating everything he encounters with his own little crayon. Kids can simply read the story, have it read to them, or choose to interact with it. In the interactive "Touch Tale" mode, kids are asked to "be" Harold's crayon, using their fingers to color in the lines that Harold has drawn. There are many additional hidden animations to trigger, and a clearly explained tutorial shows kids just how to find them.

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With the finger-drawing abilities offered by the iPad, HAROLD AND THE PURPLE CRAYON seems like the perfect storybook to translate into app-hood. And Trilogy Studios has done a remarkably fantastic job of doing so. The original illustrations are adorably animated, the narration is superbly performed, and the interactive elements are seamlessly integrated into the storytelling experience. Every time Harold draws a new element into his environment, readers follow those crayon lines with their fingers, literally helping Harold create his world. The help button, which maps out the interactive spots on each page, is also a wonderful feature. Some book apps highlight the hotspots so kids can see them easily, but the help button offers a great way for kids to make sure they haven't missed anything, without taking away their chance to first explore and find the hidden spots themselves. Excellent.

App details

Devices:iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire
Release date:August 5, 2011
Size:63.90 MB
Publisher:Trilogy Studios
Minimum software requirements:iOS 4.3.3 or later

This review of Harold and the Purple Crayon was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent Written bybethingram August 10, 2011

Love Harold!!!

This is so wonderful! Love the story and love this app! Kids of all ages will love this!
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Parent Written byVery Happy Dad August 9, 2011

Love Harold!

One of my favorite books as a child and now available on iPad! A wonderful example of great content married to great technology. A must have for anyone with younger kids!
Parent Written byAllisonyc December 6, 2011

Other educational option

My child thinks this application is absolutely wonderful. This and Little Pim's language learning ipad app are her two favorites: another awesome educational application option for younger kids. Highly recommend both!


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