Actor, comedian, and father of three Allen Covert has paired one of America’s oldest sentiments with one of its newest mediums in the new children’s story brand “Cherry Tree.”
The actor, best known for his collaborations with Adam Sandler on movies like Happy Gilmore, The Waterboy, and Jack and Jill, is now spearheading a patriotic children’s book series that is now available as an app.
Covert explained to The Daily Caller that the “Cherry Tree” books are looking to fill a void, providing children stories infused with patriotic and moral messages in an engaging, easily accessible way.
“My eldest started kindergarten this year, and I am just getting into the whole education system, and it was something we found that was missing in the books my children brought home from the library,” he said.
The company launched in late February with four series — available in a free app on iPhone and iPad — including the patriotic dinosaur “Tex the T. Rex,” the pro-troops series “Special Hops: The Good, The Bad, and The Cuddly,” a story stressing the importance of hard work “Our Town, USA.”
“Tex [the T. Rex] travels the country visiting historical landmarks and teaches kids about them,” Covert said, explaining how the first book has Tex visiting Plymouth Rock. “Tex goes to Plymouth Rock and he talks about the Pilgrims, who they were and how hard it was for them to get here, why they felt it was necessary for them to get here, in a very factual, fun way.”
“It is just a fun way for kids to get engaged and learn a little bit about our history and our country,” he said.
“Look when I was a kid we had ‘Schoolhouse Rock!’… and that is more what we are trying to do, get back to something like that to say, learning about the founding of our country and learning about what makes our country exceptional should not be controversial and is not in any way shape or form political,” he said.
“This is our country. Look, there is plenty of time –when they get older — to delve into what issues people feel are problematic in our history and then to find out what we did to fix those issues,” he said. “But to me these are books geared to kids six and under, and I don’t need to be teaching them social justice.”
Covert and his colleagues write these books in the same collaborative manner they write their scripts — hashing out ideas and writing drafts.
Right now, the stories are only available on the Apple “I” products. They expect “Cherry Tree” books to soon be available on other outlets, like the Kindle.
Covert explained they they decided to take the digital path so that they would have more opportunities to expand to games and increase the age range. Further, all the books can be read to them, as they follow along, in the digital medium.
“As we expand, more parents can know, ‘Oh my kids are safe,’ there is nothing they are going to click on in ‘Cherry Tree,’ whether it is a game, a book, or whatever else we come up with,, that parents need to be worried about,” he said.
“At the end of the day, I want the kids to have fun, so it will make them want to learn more,” Covert said.