Sometime around 6 months of age we really started a consistent bedtime routine. Consumption of self fed foods necessitated a nightly bath (instead of every other night) and so the routine just fell into place from there: bath, a little bit of play/walk, milk, books and then bed.

I love to read (though I’ve been slacking more and more recently – does reading blogs count?) and hope Abby and Miles will too. I was a little too excited when I first saw Abby “reading”. I don’t always (read: rarely) have their full attention but I know they hear me.

There is just one problem.

We have a decent collection for a couple infants/early toddlers, but I get sick of them quickly.

About a month ago I was contacted by a representative from the app FarFaria asking if I’d be interested in writing a review in exchange for access to their app. My first thought was YAY NEW BOOKS! Then my second thought was YAY NEW BOOKS!

 

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Description

FarFaria is an app available on both apple and android devices. It contains over 700 books with 5 new titles added each week. It is geared for children between the ages of 2-9. Each book also contains a badge indicating reading level:

P: Pre-Readers, Age 0+
1: Beginning Readers, Pre-K – Kindergarten
2: Progressing Readers, Kindergarten – Grade 2
3: Early Fluent Readers, Grade 1 – Grade 3
4: Fluent Readers, Grade 2 – Grade 4
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In addition, the app offers stores in a variety of categories:
  • Animal Kingdom
  • Adventure Island
  • Bedtime Bluffs
  • Goodland
  • Looney Lagoon
  • Preschool Playground
  • Fairy Tale Falls
  • Mt. Make Believe
  • Classics Grove
  • Genius Jungle
  • Sing Along City (yes, its sing alongs!)

photo 2When you choose a book you are given the option to “auto play”, “read to me” or “read myself”. As the story reads (or sings), at any time you can touch the screen and a drop down menu gives you the option to pause, read again, add to favorites or exit story. Should you choose to add a story to your favorites, it is added to a list that you are able to read offline at at any time.

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Likes

  • LOTS and LOTS of books! I know I sound like an advertisement here, but with over 700 books it would be REALLY difficult to run out of stories to read.
  • Reading level labels – obviously this doesn’t apply to us yet as the twins are only 13 months old, however as a Speech Therapist I am considering using this app with some of my older kids to work on things such as reading comprehension and fluency. The level labels make it easy to find something appropriate for them.
  • Option to have the story read to your child, or to allow your child to read the story him/herself.
  • Favorites list that allows your child to read any book on that list even when you are not connected to wifi (read: car rides!).
  • Even though this app is geared towards ages 2-9, in my opinion can be used from 0-9. Its never too young to start reading to your kids.
  • App is easy to navigate and child friendly
  • All kinds of books in one place! This makes travel so much easier (and lighter)
  • Books can be viewed both in portrait (with a large picture and the words on the bottom) and landscape (words on the left, small picture on the right)
  • No ads! (I HATE ADS)

 

photo 5Dislikes

I feel the point of reviews to is to have both likes and dislikes and feel everything has at least some room for improvement. With that said, this list is probably on the picky side:

  • The fact that the app was geared towards ages 2-9 originally left me feeling disinterested because the twins are a year away from the beginning of the age range. Sure, they don’t understand how to navigate the site, but that doesn’t mean I can’t choose a story to read to them.
  • Cost – I’m cheap and usually try to download free apps. Full app functionality requires  a monthly subscription. (For what you get, though, the price seems fair)
  • Nowhere on the app describes the reading levels – I had to email the rep I spoke with to find out this information
  • The pauses between pages in the sing along category takes away from experience and fluidity when you think about singing along.

Now for the fun part! FarFaria has offered TWO 3 month subscriptions to their app. To enter, leave a comment and I will choose two random numbers. If you recently liked or click like on my new Facebook page, I will give you another entry (let me know in your comment that you did). You do not have to be a blogger to win. This giveaway ends on Wednesday at 11:59pm EST.

Try FarFaria for Free: Download FarFaria and read one story every day for free with no obligation to pay.

App Store download link: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/free-childrens-books-farfaria/id491771721?mt=8

Google Play download link: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.intuary.farfaria

 

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