123 Color HD: Talking Coloring Book – Just Another Coloring Book App? Take a Closer Look…

 123 Color HD: Talking Coloring Book app has been around for a while however quiet enhanced from its first version!. Available for iPad, iPhone/iPod and currently free (just for today?), this app provides coloring pages for elementary students with fair to good coloring skills. A Premium version is available for 4.99.

As a coloring book app this app comes with additional features of color by number, color by letter, talking palettes that speak the colors on the palette as well as subtly provide the written word, a nice feature for students needing visual and verbal reinforcement.

Although the coloring or cartoon pages provided in the basic app have pictures with a lot of detail, suited primarily to elementary aged students, when you color the color stays in the lines creating greater success for students (especially those with a perfectionistic side or those with limited motor control. Use with younger students is also appropriate when using Photo Painting (see discussion below).

Other coloring choices provided is a Shapes coloring book which features coloring sheets with multiple shapes of squares, triangle, pyramids,  cubes, concentric circles, wedges, ovals, cones, parallelograms, trapeziods and hexagons, suited to  elementary aged students at the 1st or above grade level.

A cool coloring book feature of the app is the World Map coloring page. It provides a single coloring page of the world that when colored or tapped provides you with an immediate link to the Google Earth page of the country or ocean you touched.

Although my initial thought of this app was just another coloring book app, when I look a bit deeper at the Photo Painting coloring book, you will find existing pictures of animals you can color or paint on or apply a limited palette of stickers to. The Photo Painting initial screen also allows the option to import a picture from your Photo Album, meaning that if you took or imported a picture of a worksheet, personal picture or map it can be available for import into the Photo Painting coloring book. This provides a really nice method of bringing in those image worksheets you legally acquired, or personal photos you want to embellish using the 123 Color Talking Coloring Book tools. I have a prior post on how to import or take screen shots of worksheets from web resources on this prior post:  https://otswithapps.wordpress.com/2012/01/27/ot-itool-kit-tip-and-trick-2-taking-and-using-screen-shots-on-your-idevice/

Here is an example of a quick completed worksheet I had in my Photos taken from a screen shot from Injini’s website using their colorful, free, pre-writing worksheets:

Sizing of the color or paint strokes is offered.

Another option available in the basic 123 Coloring Book app is their Stationery Coloring Book providing Lined Paper of different colors, Lettering Paper (has top, middle and base or bottom lines for letter formation and alignment practice) as well graph paper (although a small grid). The Letter Paper provides a nice choice of paper for handwriting practice if needed.

Settings of this app provides many options of size of color by number letters or numbers, turning the music on or off, type of reward songs, choices of music or coloring book themes, language, color palette size, choice and layout and more!

Additional pages and concepts are available as add-on purchases with the value pack coloring books ranging from 3.99 – 5.99. There are handwriting practice sheets, holiday  and topic theme coloring books. One of the packs has a complete world map set.

Although the basic app coloring sets are for more mature elementary students in my opinion, this app can be used for modifying worksheets or drawing on pictures similar to Doodle Buddy as described in the post sited above. One difference between Doodle Buddy and 123 Color however is Doodle Buddy allows typing on the screen whereas 123 color is only drawing and painting – pending the task you are doing.

123 Color: Talking Coloring Book has many other features and easy access to the tools I believe. Currently free, or even if $.99 this app has many features worth using with students in your OT sessions.

123 Color HD: Talking Coloring Book is worth considering for your OT iTool Kit if you work with middle school or younger students, whether free (today) or for $.99 in my opinion!


About Carol Leynse Harpold, MS, OTR/L, SCLV, ATP, CATIS

OTR/L with more than 35 years experience in pediatrics, school based therapy and adult rehabilitation. Masters of Science in Adaptive Education/Assistive Technology with 20 years experience in AT in education of elementary, middle school, secondary, post secondary students and work environments for adult clients. A RESNA Assistive Technology Practitioner with ACVREP CATIS credentials, AOTA Specialty Certification in Low Vision, USC Davis Executive Certificate in Home Modifications, servicing adults and students with disabilities in employment, education, and home environments. A 2020 graduate of the University of Alabama Birmingham Low Vision Certification Program.
This entry was posted in Activity Worksheets on Your iPad, App Reviews, Apps for OT's, Apps for Special Needs, AT for Handwriting, Drawing, Early Childhood, Fine Motor Development, Finger Isolation, Handwriting, iPad, iPhone, iPod, Maps, Middle School, Occupational Therapy, Pre-writing, Special education, Visual Motor and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to 123 Color HD: Talking Coloring Book – Just Another Coloring Book App? Take a Closer Look…

  1. Nicole Knofflock says:

    Hi Carol,
    I’m an occupational therapy student in New Zealand. This is a really interesting article and seems like such a create program to use with children. I haven’t done a placement in a school setting as of yet but hope to in the near future. Thanks
    Nicole 🙂

    • Hi Nicole, What year are you in school?

      Thank you for your comment! There are so many great apps for students! The iPad is used a lot for a wide variety of students in our school.

      Good luck with your placements for your clinicals!

      • Nicole Knofflock says:

        Hi Carol, I am halfway through my second year. There’s so much to learn about OT. I can’t wait to get out on placement again 🙂


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