Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Engaging apps for Scribbling and Drawing

Today I am highlighting 2 apps that I would recommend to pediatric Occupational Therapists, parents and teachers of young children, and early intervention providers.  Lazoo offers two apps (currently free) that will get your most reluctant drawers and scribblers motivated to join in the fun. The apps are so engaging, I found myself wanting to try out each scene, looking forward to the animation on each page. The developers were creative in giving a purpose to the doodles and scribbles.

There is a parent section available, which as you know, earns an app bonus points in my book.  The parent section encourages parents to let their child engage in open ended play.  Parents are encouraged to comment on the drawings and examples of questions that can spark some conversations are provided.  Collaboration, creativity, and the process are emphasized.  Here is a quick description of each app.

Let's Color
The app offers over 25 different scenes.  Each scene has a written question or prompt that is read aloud as each word is highlighted.  For the example below the prompt is "These kids are playing in the mud, make it messy!".  The prompt is only read once and there does not appear to be a way to have it repeated.  There are 5 tools available to produce the drawings and there are also stickers for added embellishment. Once the masterpiece is created, the child hits the "GO!" button and watches as her artwork becomes part of the animation. Several of the scenes promote collaboration and imitation by providing more than one image so a parent, teacher or peer can work on one and the child can work on the other.  For example, in one scene the child is prompted to draw hair on a figure and there are 2 figures.

Completed picture from Lazoo's Let's Color app.


This app has several features in common with Let's Color. A friendly voice provides a prompt such as "Draw a squiggly mane to turn this kitty into a lion." In some scenes there is more than one image so a team can collaborate and imitate. The tools and the stickers are the same.  This app is different in that it provides a prompt in the form of a model of producing squiggles in the intended area and there are fewer scenes.

Completed picture from Lazoo's Squiggles! app
Give these apps a try and enjoy the process!

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