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YakLibs -- LOL Silly Word Game
Reviewed on 9/16/19

Do you love Mad Libs stories? Here's a new twist!  With Yak Libs kids can choose a story, fill in their own words or let the random word generator choose words, and then either read the story out loud themselves (or perhaps more hilariously) have the automated voice (think: Siri or Alexa) read the story out loud for them. Favorite stories can be saved and listened to over and over again. There's also a classroom edition (anyone can download it, not just teachers) which removes all in-app purchases (extra story packs and voices) and links to social media (the home version has the option to connect to the Game Center) but also the story about farting -- you can decide which version is right for your family.  Both versions of the app have some great adult control options in the setting menu under "more" -- there's an "inappropriate word filter" with several different levels of filtering, the option to turn off the random word generator if you really want kids to have to come up with words on their own, the option to turn off the narrator if you want kids to have to read the words themselves and the option to turn on scoring if you like numbers assigned to your funny story (personally, I prefer the simple reward of cracking up about ridiculous sentences). This app is well-designed and intuitive to use. While it can be played alone, it will of course be more fun to play with friends and therefore encourages joint media engagement, which is the best kind of "screentime" to engage in.  Pro tip: If you do have the narrator turned on, try just typing in random strings of letters and listening to how the voice pronounces them -- that's good for a few laughs!  Disclaimer: I was provided with a free copy of the classroom edition of this app for review as well as access to the beta versions of this app for which I provided feedback during the development stage.

Age group: Grades 3-5, Grades 6-8