OOKS

Price: Android - Free iPhone/iPad - Free

Teacher Overview

OOKS is an app that combines the virtual with the physical. Children follow and influence a story until its conclusion. Parents then have the option of turning it into a real book that they can hold and read together with their son or daughter.

Teacher Review

OOKS invents a zany but friendly land populated by many colourful and eccentric characters called OOKS.  It is with these OOKS that children follow and direct their adventures in the world of the OOKS.
 
There is a balance to be achieved in apps where the user creates their own story.  If the story and all of its elements are too tightly confined to a fixed path, the reader will feel that the personalisation of the tale is only a thin veneer.  If the story is too open, the activity will not support young children and will leave them feeling overwhelmed at the task ahead of them and disappointed at the result.
 
Ooks strikes a good middle ground.  There is a selection of points where the story forks and the reader can choose which way to go.   Little interactive elements, such as viewing the options through a telescope, incorporate the choices nicely into the story.  Children have an impact on the visual element by drawing hats and disguises and choosing words and phrases.  They will also have created their own unique OOK character right at the start of their adventure.
 
Drawings are done via a simple art activity which gives some suggested outlines to follow.  This is perhaps a little too simple as children will look for a fill option that is not there.  Its omission makes creating non-transparent hats, for example, a bit of a challenge.  It would also be nice if children could revisit old artwork to modify it after the story has finished as children may see ways to improve it before preserving the art in the completed story but this is not yet possible.
 
The framework in which children produce their OOKS story is of superb quality.  The characters and scenes are vivid and create an enticing and interesting world to explore and influence.  Scenes are animated to enliven transitions and characters are brought to life with actions and well-suited spoken voices that add humour.  The spoken words are accompanied by speech bubbles so that children can read along as the characters converse with them.  Each bubble only advances when the reader is ready, so children can take their time with the reading of the words.
 
Everything is simple to do whether it is making a choice, carrying out a task or interacting with the on-screen items.  Parents and children will be able to enjoy working on the stories together and seeing how a different choice could change the outcome of the events.  
 
The key difference between OOKS and other story creation apps is the ease with which a physical book can be made and received.   After, perhaps, making a few stories, children can choose their favourite and parents can easily order it to arrive a few days later in the post - after a few days of eager anticipation.  
 
Tapping the order option in the app takes parents straight through to a secure website to complete the purchase of the book.  Parental controls are included in the app and, as this is a separate process not related to in-app purchases, there should be no chance of children ordering physical books without a parent's approval.
 
The books themselves are of excellent quality.  Their clear and vivid artwork is printed on good A4 paper stock printed in landscape format with a robust perfect binding (not staples) and a cover that, although not hardback, has a good-quality feel.    It reflects the choices made in the chosen story and the child's own drawings that they contributed to it.  It is as good as many of the children's books that you might find in a bookshop but with the bonus of reflecting its owner's creative decisions.
 
As the app is free to download, and the full story with all of its options are there to be used, and more indicated for future expansions, parents and children can have a really good time using the app without risking any money at all.  Should children produce something of which they are proud, it is great to have the chance to then turn it into a real book that can be treasured indefinitely.  Schools too can make use of the story creation, although it is probably not feasible for them to make use of the printing options.  Using the app at school could, however, inspire children to make use of the app at home developing their reading skills and imagination as they do so.

Ooks website is https://www.ookshq.com

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Teacher Certification

Teacher Rating for the appTeacher Rating

Subject Category of the appSubjects

App Advertising or In-App PurchasesSafeguarding

In-App Purchases - Yes

In-App Advertising - No

Screenshots

  • OOKS-1OOKS-2OOKS-3OOKS-4OOKS-5

From the Developer

Create your very own OOK to take on amazing fun filled adventures! In the OOKiverse everything you do changes the story. You’ll decide where to go and who to meet, and you’ll even be able to draw your very own artwork into the story! When your adventure is over you’ll have created your very own personalised book that we’ll deliver right to your door! Not only that but every story you finish creates a brand new unique OOK that will be added to your collection.

Your OOK - Created by your personality and every bit as unique as you are
Your Story - Shaped by the decisions you make and actions you take
Your Book - Ultra personalised with your artwork, choices, and decisions.

OOKlaf the famous storyteller will be your guide as you journey through the OOKiverse seeking out storystuff and creating new stories to fill the world with even more OOKS! But be careful, Baron BLOTT and his army of loyal followers the Ink Blots lurk in the shadows waiting to foil you at every turn.

The future of the OOKiverse is in your hands. So what are you waiting for!

Features

• Your very own OOK created by your personality and as unique as you are
• Ultra-personalised book created at the end of each story adventure starring your OOK and delivered to your door.
• A unique and engaging cast of characters
• Multiple story paths to be explored, each leading to the discovery of a brand new OOK!
• New story realms released regularly
• A dynamic OOKS HQ that can be decorated with items you unlock by playing
• Beautiful backgrounds and vibrant artwork throughout

Educational Features

OOKS delivers powerful educational content in three cleverly woven together steps that are:

Play - Interact - Learn

• Play - With OOKS, children are active participants in the digital world. The universe they create unleashes the child's imagination and creativity, engaging the brain on multiple levels, all while having fun.
• Interact - Interactive storytelling gives kids freedom over their choices and resulting consequences. This builds cognitive development, encourages independence and builds self-esteem.
• Learn - Imagine the excitement when your package arrives - A personalised book with your child named as the author! Foster a love of books and reading while improving literacy skills, then sit down together to read their masterpiece.
About us

At Zulleon we specialise in creating and developing great play experiences for kids. We are not constrained by a single medium and instead strive to create a fully rounded experience for children where their fun and creativity can flourish in both the real and digital world.

We have partnered with some of the brightest and most talented people from around the globe to help bring our products to life, and our passion for creativity and play means that only the absolute best will do.

Our products allow kids to be kids. We provide great play experiences for children while also fostering a love of creativity and imagination that we hope will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

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