Monday, March 19, 2012

#AppMondayTAS - Toca Boca Apps

I downloaded Toca Hair Salon (Universal | $1.99) on a free day, and until recently had not had the chance to check it out.  This app is an amazingly well done app that's all about cutting and styling hair.  I first tried with my daughter, who fell in love with it.  Then I tried it with my students (8 boys) and they can't stop playing with it.  This app is all about play and imagination and presents so many opportunities for communication and socialization it is well worth the money.

Even before I had Toca Hair Salon, I had downloaded Toca Tea Party (iPad Only | $2.99), and again hadn't had a chance to try it out until recently.  This app caught my attention immediately, it's beautifully created and an amazing recreation of a child's tea party.  You start off by setting a table, by choosing your tablecloth, plates, cups and sweet treats.  Then it tells you to get some friends!!!  Everyone sits around the iPad and they can eat their sweet treats and drink their tea.  The host can pass out more treats and pour more tea.  There's even some napkins for when you spill.  The opportunities for practicing social skills, questioning, answering, and requesting are endless.  You can't even take more to eat until you finish what's in front of you!  When all the treats are done you have to put everything in the sink and clean up!

Since I had tried these two apps, I decided to splurge and get a few more.  I've since downloaded Toca Kitchen (Universal | $1.99) and Toca Store (Universal | $1.99).  Both are excellent apps that really encourage communication, creative play, socialization, requesting and more.  Toca Kitchen lets you pick from four characters and feed them.  Some foods they like, some they don't and some need to be cooked first!  Toca Store lets the kids set up shop and play store keeper.

Recently Toca Boca has added Toca House to their list of apps, which also include Toca Doctor, Toca Birthday Party Playtime, Toca Robot Lab, Toca Hair Salon - Christmas Gift (Free) and Helicopter Taxi.  I highly recommend these apps for any special education classroom or parent!

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