Congratulations for being a parent who cares about their children's reading material.

What is Frog's Princess?

Frog's Princess is a storybook app which can be played on iPads, Android phones, and computers.

The story is a middle grade adventure with magical elements, set on the fairy tale route in medieval Germany. Emma is waiting for her prince to come. She doesn't expect him to arrive as a frog. Francis can't even be a frog very well. He'll do anything to save his bodyguard - even kiss a princess.

How do I help my children play?

 The first choice children have is which game to play.

  • If they are more interested in the story from the prince's point of view they should choose the frog.
  • If they are more interested in the story from the princess's point of view they should choose the princess.

The next choice is whether to play the short or long version.

  • Impatient children who just want to find out what happens should choose the short version.
  • Children can always go back and start a new game.  Up to five games can be saved.

Children will have the opportunity to design both the prince and princess for their game.  Hair colour, skin colour, eye colour (color, if you're American or Prairie province Canadian!) and hair styles allow players to make unique heroes and heroines for their story.  This is done during the story.

The most important choices children make are how their characters speak.  Whenever there is a coloured speech balloon, this may be clicked to bring up a scroll of 10 different personalities. Players click a personality and hear a different version of the dialogue. When players press Play, the latest version they read will be saved and the story moves forward using that personality until it is changed again.  Pages can be refreshed and changed at any time.

How to play Frog's Princess from Kathy Smart on Vimeo.

So as they play, children are creating a story which is unique to them.

Children can't change story events, they can only change how their heroes speak.

Children can go to any point in the story at any time using the navigation menu on the top right.

Children can stop at any time and start a new story, or go back to an old story, by going to the menu on the top left.

Some children choose a personality and stay with it throughout the story, not exploring alternative dialogue. Encourage them to click the speech bubble and experiment with different character reactions.

Who should read Frog's Princess?

Emma tells Francis that evil cannot see her shining crown, and Francis trusts her and takes her hand and walks with her into danger

Reader age: 10 years

Violence: this story includes violent magical confrontations but not blood

Sex: there are non-explicit kisses

Nudity: the frog turns into a prince but is covered at all times

Magic: the villain is a shape-shifting witch and the hero has golden magic

Fantasy: the setting is medieval times with some anachronistic items such as a telescope

What can I share with my child?

Children react to the strong emotional fairy tale elements - a daughter mourning her dead mother, older sisters who don't respect their sister, a father who does not at first recognise his daughter's worth, a loyal servant who sacrifices himself for his prince, a young prince alone in the world overcoming impossible odds to rescue his servant.

  • Ask your children what was the saddest thing that happened.

  • Ask them what was the happiest thing.

  • Ask if they would do things differently if they were Princess Emma or Princess Francis.

  • Ask them which princess personality (speech bubble choice) they liked best.

  • Ask them which prince personality they liked best.

  • Ask them why they think their favourite personalities react the way they do.

Ask relationship questions, such as:

  • Do you know anyone as active as Francis? / as sensitive as Emma?

  • Do you think the King is a good father?

Oh, fathers.  The King says, "There is evil in the land indeed if daughters question-question their father's command.  Emma?"  Emma says, "Yes, Father."

  • Do you ever feel people aren't listening to you like they didn't listen to Emma and Francis?

Discuss ethical issues, such as:

  • If you were Emma, would you have hurt Frog?

  • What else could Frog have done rather than trying to force a kiss on Emma?

  • Was Emma right when she said there should be no fighting?

  • Do you think the witch was punished enough?

Ask if your children would like to show you the characters they customized for the game. Discuss their design choices.

Extended activities

Compare Frog's Princess with other versions of the fairy tale and design a family version.

Print Frog's Princess journal pages and note down the main changes your family would make to the story.

US sized journal pages to print

Frog's Princess title page US letter size

Frog's Princess lined page US letter size

Frog's Princess blank page US letter size

Australian sized journal pages to print

Frog's Princess title page Aus A4 size

Frog's Princess lined page Aus A4 size

Frog's Princess blank page Aus A4 size

Make an origami frog for each family member and write their name on it.

Since up to five story versions can be saved, make unique versions for each family member.

Enjoy the journey of sharing a story with your children.

Frog's Princess is seeking Kickstarter crowdfunding to create the character customization module.  Campaign ends 6:00AM October 30, 2018, for those in the US.