This app, which currently goes for 99 cents in iTunes and is designed for the iPhone and iPad, has long been a favorite in the Viva household. Prima started playing it when she was about 2 and half. I wasn’t sure whether to be impressed or worried that, without any coaching from me or Mrs. Viva, she figured out how to turn on my iPhone, swipe to get out of the lock screen, swipe to get to the page with toddler apps, find the Bug Builder icon, and click on it to start the game. If anything, it’s a testament to the app’s appeal.
When you or your little one opens the app, a women says, “Let’s build bugs!” while a mellow tinkly soundtrack plays. After hitting start, you get to “pick a shape for your bug. The next screen lets you decorate that shape, with a choice of six colors. You select a color, then use your finger to “paint” the bug shape. You can mix and match as many shapes as you like.
Then, you “tap to build your bug.” After tapping a few times, you get a creepy, crawly, animated bug like this:
You then either hit the back icon to start over again or the camera icon, which saves a picture of your bug in your camera roll.
Prima plays with this app for 5-10 minutes at a stretch, and really likes the funny bugs she can make. The upbeat music can get a little grating if you’ve got the volume on your phone turned up and you’re trying to get something done that requires concentration (like writing a blog post), but all in all this is a pretty innocuous app. Your biggest problem will be finding bug after bug in your photos.
We’re all happy with this app–it’s got good replay value and, while not overtly educational, does help your kids master manipulating colors on a touchscreen.