Old MacDonald Piano is a children’s app that uses the classic melody to engage with kids and teach them a few chords from the piano. It costs $1.99 and is compatible with an iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad. It was brought to us by Kiboomu.
The app is meant to be educational as it includes interactive activities centered on the Old Macdonald tune. When you open it up you get four options to choose from: Play and Sing Along, Learn the Song, Karaoke Mode, and Free Style Mode. For each of these choices you get a half screen of the piano, then a menu bar and the top half of the screen is comprised of a cartoon farm landscape.
The Menu Bar consists of a Back button, then an instrument button, Start, Record, and Playback. With the instrument button you get to choose the type of sound that the keyboard will play from the options of xylophone, piano, guitar, banjo, bell, recorder, harp, and farm animal. All of the four modes are the same except when you hit the Start button. In Play and Sing Along, when you hit start, a rooster crows and the top of the screen starts moving forward as the song starts coming out and the keyboard lights up with the notes that are being hit.
In Learn the Song, the top of the screen turns into sheet music and each note that is hit is shown so that you (or your child) can follow along and make the connection of which keys to press. In Karaoke Mode the top of the screen has the words listed and when you hit Start only the music plays and not the singing so that the toddler can read and sing what the lyrics to the song are. In Free Style Mode, we get the singing and the lyrics displayed, but not the keys on the keyboard lighting up. The Free Style Mode is to test whether or not you can hit the notes on the keyboard correctly without any help.
This is a great app for keeping your child occupied in a productive way. If you can only keep one eye on your kid (while you are making dinner or something) this app provides an engrossing yet educating solution.
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