We are a digital family and when it comes to apps for learning, we’re happy to download. While we always look for free apps (who doesn’t?), there have been some great finds that have been well worth the few dollars of investment that we made. Since our kids range from first grade to seventh and we’ve been homeschooling now for eight years, we have made quite a list of apps that we like. Here are the top 10 apps for children who are in kindergarten to the third grade…at least for now!
Top 10 Apps for K-3
1. Scratch Jr.
A great game that uses the basic skills of the famous Scratch programming language to teach children how to program their own interactive stories by learning early concepts of computer programming. It’s available as a free iPad App, and is set to be released for Android in early 2015.
2. Explorium – Space For Kids
This is a great game for kids who love to learn and have fun! In this app, children can explore space, learn about it, and get creative with 9 mini-games inside the bigger one. This is an amazing way for kids to deepen their knowledge of space with over 70 different fun facts and a built-in encyclopedia. Available for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
This app helps kids to learn that the shadows that they are afraid of at night are nothing more than that, just shadows. In “DisMonster” your child will be able to explore a bedroom with a flashlight to finds different types of items, which they will then use to create a monster of their own. This will help them see that they should not be afraid of the dark and to use their imagination. It is available for iPhone, iPad and iPhone touch.
4. Tracks ‘n’ Trains: Zoo Trains
This amazing app lets kids create their very own train tracks, develop the way in which they want their train to go, and it allows them to enjoy the exploration of building something of their own. Your child can even built the scenery around the tracks, adding flowers, trees and animals along the path. Thumbs-up for decorating! It also comes with pre-made train tracks so the kids (and even you) can have fun before starting to build their own. Available for iPad, iPhone and iPhone touch.
5. Little Luna – Big Talent
Join Little Luna and her family for some interactive fun! With this app, your child can play games and get to know Little Luna’s family in a beautifully drawn interactive story. It is available for iPad, iPhone and iPhone touch.
6. Time Tangle Adventure Time This fun app will be loved by your children even if they haven’t seen Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time with Finn and Jake. The object of the game is to fix the time tangle mess by defeating bad guys, saving friends and collecting coins, and the game even allows for total interactive play by tilting the screen when playing. Available for iPhone, iPad and Android platforms.
7. Niko and the Sword of Light
This is much more than just an app, it is an animated comic book with amazing visuals and audio that accompany the story. Follow Niko and his quest for the Sword of Light, the only magical salvation for his people. You can enjoy reading this (and listening to it) on the iPad with your kids.
8. Quick Math Jr.
Help your child develop mathematical skills by playing with cute little monsters! This app helps kids improve their number recognition and counting skills through fun games. The best part (according to the youngest) is that you can even build your own fun little monsters. Available for iPad and iPhone.
9. Pepi Ride
A super cute driving app that helps children engage in creative thinking and tap into their problem solving skills while they drive through different journeys. Kids can pick their driver and even customize their own car before setting off on the adventures. You can download this fun game for iPad or iPhone.
10. Short Vowel Word Study
This educational app exposes kids to the first steps of reading by using a program that is very hands on. With it, your child learns how to analyze, manipulate and create meaningful and logical generalizations of how word spelling works. Sounds hard, but the app is very easy to learn from and it suits young children who are eager to learn new things. Available for iPad, iPhone and Android platforms.
New apps are constantly being developed and that means the top 10 list today may be outdated before too long. Stay tuned to the Tech Tuesday articles to make sure your must-have apps are up to date!