Portegno Apps today is pleased to introduce KidsMag for iPad, their monthly interactive magazine for kids ages three and older. Issue Number One features more than 30 pages of interactive content, including: Listen & Learn, Play & Enjoy, Draw & Color, Counting & Writing, and Reading & Listening. Two realistically drawn young children, Teo and Bianca, guide the reader through more than 50 different activities. The writing, illustrations, and activities are comparable to those of the highest quality print books for children. And the music, sound effects, dialogue, and narration are the equal of the best juvenile ebooks. Highlights, the perennial kids magazine, has long set the standard in magazines for readers 6 – 12. KidsMag follows in this tradition of fun, educational, activity-oriented publications that children can enjoy alone or with their parents.
KidsMag displays in portrait mode, with each page filling the iPad screen. Navigation is easy with forward and backward pointing arrows in the bottom corners. Help, Audio controls, and the Table of Contents are always available from small icons in the top corners. The animated page turn effect with sound operates flawlessly, simulating real paper pages. KidsMag is one of the few iOS apps for kids that includes separate, continuously variable volume controls for both music, and effects and voices. The voices are professional voiceover artists, so Teo, Bianca, their friends, and the female Narrator are all highly effective.
Issue Number One introduces the reader to the young boy, Teo, and the younger girl, Bianca. Together, they guide the reader through every page and activity of the magazine. The cover story "Teo & Bianca Meet the Firefighters," starts on page two and extends to page six. First, the reader is introduced to the firehouse and firefighters. By touching the screen, the reader can hear additional information about life in the firehouse, the special equipment used, and what firefighters do as part of their job. Page four gives the reader an opportunity to dress-up various firefighters by moving different equipment and clothing on to them. By shaking the iPad, another firefighter appears with different gear and clothing. Page five challenges kids to complete a virtual firefighter wood puzzle. Again, shaking the iPad brings up additional puzzles. Page six shows firefighters at work, and readers are challenged to find the objects in the picture that do not belong, with additional puzzles available by shaking.
Subsequent pages include: "Bianca Goes to the Supermarket" with a visual matching game, and a narrated and display text story; coordinating all the parts of their wardrobe as they dress; "The Farm," is another feature article on the scale of "Teo & Bianca Meet the Firefighters," including stories, illustrations, and interactive games about farm machinery, animals, and jobs; "Draw the Missing Part of the Drawing," a built-in graphics app that allows kids to paint and draw with different brushes; "Learn How to Brush Your Teeth with Bianca," a step-by step illustrated guide, and "Missing Letters" game where players supply the missing letter in a simple word, and "How Many" activity where players drag the correct numeral to a group of objects.
The remainder of the magazine starts off with six special games that develop different skills in children: "Find It" game where players search a picture to find specified objects; "Spring Time Music Maker" where kids can play songs on a built-in virtual piano; "Build a House" game; "Spot the Differences" between pictures; "Who Took This Photo" game where kids must identify which of five kids is not in the photo; "Puzzle Mania" animated jigsaw puzzle; and finally "Learn Spanish with Teo and Bianca" where kids learn Spanish words for everyday things, and common verbs.
* Listen & Learn – Educational topics developed by fun and lovely characters that will lead kids through the whole learning experience
* Play & Enjoy – Interactive topic-related games: Puzzles, 7 Differences, Scene Creators, Find the Odd One, Dress Up activities, etc.
* Draw & Color – Complete and paint drawings: different brush sizes, color palette, and eraser to stimulate kids’ artistic talent
* Counting & Writing – Letter and number recognition is stimulated through games, and counting skills are developed through games and topic-related activities
* Reading & Listening – Stories for kids to enjoy on their own or with an adult by reading or listening together
"We have been specializing in educational iOS apps for kids for several years, and we have had quite a bit of success, such as iWash My Cats, Zombie Me, Flashcards Puzzles – Alphabet, Cartoonizeme, and Age Me," stated Project Manager Gabriel Pasqualini. "Now, with the launch of KidsMag, we’ve put everything we’ve learned into a monthly, interactive iPad magazine for the enjoyment and benefit of both kids and their parents."