It’s everywhere! Nope, not talking about homemade slime— but technology! For better or for worse, screens are here to stay. Schools, homes, restaurants— even the doctor takes notes while she visits!
While we ultimately endorse real-time, real-life activities to set our kids out on the path to success, that’s not always going to be the case. Technology is the future and so are our kids. So when they are engaged (glued!) on the screen, we’re excited about some exceptional app choices available to make screen time a learning success. (Phew!)
We’ve taken suggestions from teachers, parents and tech-nerds alike and then had a look for ourselves. With a mix of STEM, puzzles, education, and strategy, we APPlaud (Oy!) these apps for making screen time worthwhile!
Duolingo has completely gamified learning languages. Each lesson includes a variety of speaking, listening, translation, and multiple choice challenges. When you miss a challenge, they quickly show you how to improve.
Prodigy is a curriculum-aligned math game for Grades 1 – 8 and is loved by teachers, parent and most importantly, kids! It has content from all major topics and will help ensure your students (or kids!) are ready for standardized testing. (If you can make that fun, you’ve done something right!) With a diagnostic test to place students in the correct grade, embedded assessments, and automatic differentiation, Prodigy ensures that each one of your children succeeds at their own pace.
Brilliant! Children read short articles every day on News-O-Matic. Real news by real journalists, inspires to spark conversation. Each article on delicate issues is reviewed by their child psychologist to ensure appropriate language is used so that children will understand the news and won’t be afraid. Kids can share their knowledge with the whole family and can express their point of view based on reliable facts.
GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine
GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine teaches animation that directors of all ages can be proud of! As the winner of “best iPad app of 2014” with over 2mm downloads, GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine inspires creativity and teaches kids how to animate with drawing tools, stamps, stickers and photos. Kids are able to print their movies and play them in a real-life zoetrope while also engineer with the corresponding GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine toy!
Toca Builder is a great app for younger kids who love to build but are not quite ready for Minecraft. This brand creates digital toys and everyday products that are filled with fun and silliness that kids can relate to. Taking rules, boundaries and the notion of “right” or “wrong” out of the equation, the makers of Toca Builder just want you to play.
Stack the States
Stack the States® makes learning about the 50 states fun! In this app, the states actually come to life and it’s a laugh. As you learn state capitals, shapes, geographic locations, flags and more, you can actually touch, move and drop the animated states anywhere on the screen. As you earn more states, you begin to unlock the four free bonus games: Map It, Pile Up, Puzzler and Capital Drop.
Tinybop The Explorer’s Library
Each Explorer’s Library app is an interactive model that lets kids explore the invisible and awesome wonders of our world, and there are TONS to choose from. From creating an interactive personal diary to designing your own arcade game, there’s something for everyone!
Endless Learning Academy, Endless Apps!
Prepare your child for Preschool, Kindergarten, first grade, and beyond with this interactive educational app from Originator – Endless Learning Academy! Kids will learn across a broad and growing curriculum all while having FUN with the help of the adorable Endless monsters! Based on classroom-proven learning techniques developed by Originator and now used by tens of millions of children, your child will be engaged and delighted while getting a head start in school.
Winky Think Logics
Fun for the Whole Family. Winky Think is fun for every age, from early learners mastering their motor skills to older kids looking for brain-building fun. With each game they play, they’ll hone their reasoning, observation, and spatial capabilities while developing the skills they need to conquer higher levels. Parents and kids alike will love the progressive game design that lets each kid advance at their own pace. Ideal for Common Core Learning.
While this list doesn’t cover all the great apps, it’s an engaging, fun and educational start! We’re excited that game-makers are thinking big and we hope it inspired young minds to do the same.