Oceanhouse Media is adding to its extensive eBook library of Dr. Seuss titles with its first book from The Cat in the Hat's Learning Library book series, There's No Place Like Space! Based on the book by Tish Rabe, The Cat in the Hat arrives at the home of Sally and Dick and takes them on a trip through our solar system. I reviewed the Apple versions of the app for the iPad and iPhone.
Aimed at older children, the eBook has expanded its usual features to include more in-depth interactivity. Kids can visit the eight planets (sorry, Pluto), moon, and stars with that mischievous cat and even take a "peek" through the Cat's telescope at the night sky.
The story can be enjoyed many ways. In the "Read to Me" mode the narrator reads the story, each word highlighted as it's read. Kids can tap an illustration with their finger to cause associated words in a paragraph to pop up, such as "Sally," "spaceship," and "helmet." Tapping an arrow in the lower right corner of the screen turns the page.
In addition, words in bold type can be tapped to reveal more in-depth definitions, for example "moon" - Moon: The only natural object that moves around the Earth. The surface of the moon is dry and covered with craters, rocks, and dust.
A really fun new feature is the ability to "play" with the animations. Kids can tap and hold the Cat's space ship to make it fly around, move planets, and even move the Cat, Things 1 & 2, and Dick and Sally. Kids can also tap stars to create constellations.
All of these features are also available in the "Read it Myself" mode, where kids can read the story at their own pace.
There's No Place Like Space! features original artwork that is now animated with pans, zooms and amusing sound effects. With the fun and familiar characters of the Cat in the Hat, Sally, Dick, Thing One, and Thing Two, There's No Place Like Space! adds a whole new level of interactivity and education to ebooks.