Penguin's Family

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Penguin's Family App Poster Image
Sweet but slow story about an endangered baby penguin.

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A lot or a little?

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

Ease of Play

Typical of most Oceanhouse Media book apps, there are three easy-to-use modes: Auto Play (kids aren't required to do anything but sit back and listen); Read to Me (listener must flip pages); and Read It Myself (kids who can read to without voice-over).

Violence & Scariness

At one point the baby penguin is chased (but not captured) by a sea lion, which may be scary for very young kids.

Sexy Stuff

A button on the main page will lead you to a landing page for purchasing other apps by this developer. If the News setting is turned on, advertising for other apps from the publisher may show up as pop-up screens when the app has just been started.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Penguin's Family is a beautifully illustrated -- but rather slow moving -- and spoken storybook app that tells the story of a baby endangered Humboldt penguin and his parents, showing both mom and dad taking turns caring for the baby. The developer, Oceanhouse Media, says its mission is to create apps that "enrich lives and better humanity." This sweet storybook definitely fulfills that mission, as kids learn about the beauty of endangered animals and nature, as well as how some animal parents care for their babies in similar ways to human parents.

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Is it any good?

PENGUIN'S FAMILY is a quietly educational, beautifully illustrated storybook app. It's too bad that there's not more interactivity because kids these days -- even the youngest app users -- expect it, which may cause some kids to undeservedly label this worthwhile story as boring. There's really no interactivity other than page turning on two of the three modes and the vocabulary words zooming up and being re-spoken when the pictures are touched.

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release date: July 19, 2011
  • Category: Books
  • Size: 16.40 MB
  • Publisher: Oceanhouse Media
  • Version: 1.08
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 3.0 or later
  • Last updated: August 25, 2016

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