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When I Grow Up - Little Critter

September 6, 2013

By: Carisa Kluver

The Digital Media Diet

Little Sister has big dreams for when she grows up!

When I Grow Up - Little Critter by Mercer Mayer is part of a sub-series of Little Critter titles that feature his cute little sister. Published in print in 1991, this adorable story shares a young girl's dreams for her future, including becoming a ballet dancer, truck driver and baker of tasty treats. In the end, she is reminded that she is getting hungry. When mom answers that dinner will be, "Liver and beans," she thinks to herself, "I can't wait until I grow up!" The digital version of this book also adds a new twist, keeping track as the young reader tries to find all 20 of the little cats that Mayer has hidden in his detailed illustrations.

Many readers have asked, "What kind of animal is Little Critter?" According to Wikipedia, Mercer Mayer did not specify which type of animal the Little Critter is, but, "he resembles a hedgehog, hamster or guinea pig." So, basically he's a rodent ... although a rather lovable one! Over 200 books have been released in this popular series, not to mention a whole line of toys, dvds and other products.

Like other apps by Oceanhouse Media, this book is interactive in a way that enhances early reading skills. Most images (of mom, Little Critter's sister and the things around them), will name themselves aloud while the word briefly appears over the illustration. For example, touch Little Sister in any scene and the word "Little Sister" appears on the screen simultaneously with audio narration. Additionally, the text on the page will highlight if the word tapped is in the story. This provides nice audio-visual reinforcement for early literacy. This app also has great settings, including the ability to record your own narration, turn off sound effects or even disable the interactive elements. Simple navigation is delightfully intuitive with a thumbnail page guide. 

For young readers and pre-readers, the text can be set to highlight as the narrator says each word. The delightful child narrator is easy to understand and a perfect fit, since the story is told in the first-person by Little Critter's sister. Featuring the common dreams of any young child in a western culture, this title does a wonderful job of opening the door to a world of possible careers for young girls.

This app has been thoroughly evaluated by our staff. Please click on the 'star ratings' tab above, to see how it fared in all nine of our rating categories. See synopsis tab for more details about the storyline.

All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.


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When I Grow Up - Little Critter

September 6, 2013

By: Carisa Kluver

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Gina and Mercer Mayer

Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

Length (time):
4 - 6 Minutes

Based on non-digital book: Yes

Allows Own Narration:

Uses Motion: No

Age: 2 - 6 +

English •

Length (pages):
20 Pages


Story Synopsis - When I Grow Up - Little Critter

Little Critter's sister imagines all the wonderful things she'll do when she grows up. She envisions being a great ballerina, a courageous fire chief, a world-famous doctor, a winning race car driver and more! Her enthusiasm will inspire young readers to think about what they'd like to be when they grow up!

Mercer Mayer's Little Critter stories, which address all the major issues of growing up, are perennial favorites of parents and children.

New features only available in this interactive omBook include professional narration, background audio and enlarged artwork for each scene.  

To promote reading in young children, individual words are highlighted as the story is read and words zoom up when pictures are touched. By combining the original text and artwork of author Mercer Mayer with features that entertain and promote reading, this omBook appeals to readers of all ages.

Recommended Ages: 2 - 5

[Source: iTunes]


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Orientation: Landscape

Format: Universal


Autoplay, Read-it-myself, Read-to-me, News on/off, Sound on/off, Pageguide, Record Feature, Links to: Web, Email, AppStore, Facebook, Twitter

App Release Date:


Size: 37.45 MB

Version: 2.1

Lite Version Available: No



When I Grow Up - Little Critter

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