A Troop is a Group of Monkeys is one of two animated storybook apps for the iPad that were created as companions to the hardcover book of the same name. Released in 2013, “A Troop is a Group of Monkeys,” and “A Shiver of Sharks” are both non-fiction educational apps designed to teach young readers the words for animal groups—also known as collective nouns (eg, “a pride of lions”).
The jurying committee at the IBPA considers the following criteria in its decisions, and ranks each one on a scale of one to five, with five being the highest: content, use of platform and technology, innovation, design, and “overall reaction.” In order to receive a Gold Award, recipients must score an average of 4.75 or above.
Excerpts from the judge’s comments:
· “I loved this enhanced e-book. The design of the app was an excellent complement to the original book.”
· “The animations were well done, not over bearing, and supported the overarching concept of the book. Keeping the narrative flow, with page turns and a read-aloud function, was about as perfect an adaptation as you could want for a picture book. Well done!”
· “This is an excellent enhanced e-book for kids that introduces the fun plural nouns of various animal groupings—a pride of lions, a bloat of hippopotami, an ostentation of peacocks, etc. Super fun.”
· “I thought the design was exceptional.”
About the publisher: Little Bahalia publishes children’s literary fiction and nonfiction in a variety of media formats, with a focus on iPad apps. From the publisher: “We believe tablet computers open up wonderful possibilities for experiencing stories. Our goal is to bring stories to life using animation and sound in exciting new ways. Our intent at Little Bahalia is to keep pushing the boundaries of storytelling as new technologies emerge and to offer exciting new opportunities for authors and artists.”
New apps coming from Little Bahalia Publishing include There’s a Hole at the Bottom of the C, written by Leslie McCrary and illustrated by Chelsey Holeman, and Do-Si-Do Bots, written by Ann Ingalls with art by Rebecca Emberley, the notable children’s book illustrator. To arrange an interview with the author, or to request a free download code for review, contact Stacey Williams at Little Bahalia Publishing.
About the author: Julie Hedlund is the author of A Troop is Group of Monkeys, its sequel app “A Shiver of Sharks," and the upcoming bedtime story My Love for You is the Sun. Her website, juliehedlund.com, is an incredible resource for writers and her blog posts and resources have helped many aspiring children’s writers reach their goals. Julie is the founder of 12 x 12, a forum for authors to kick-start their manuscript writing over the course of 12 months.