Here’s a list of kid’s apps you could introduce children to, especially now that they are at home all the time as the schools are closed. These apps are a great way of keeping them busy along with helping them learn something new every time.
We’ve divided them into two sections - Toddlers & Elementary. The ones falling under the Toddler category are most suitable for preschool and early primary kids, while those in the Elementary category are for later primary and early secondary age.
Go Explore from CBeebies
The entire range of the BBC’s CBeebies apps will be getting heavy usage in the coming weeks, clearly. They’re all good, but this is the one focused on learning games, from phonics and geography to feelings and self-care, all based on the parent channel’s shows and characters.
Khan Academy Kids
Khan Academy is a free collection of education courses for all ages, but it has an app specifically for two to seven-year-old children that focuses on maths, reading and social and emotional skills. It has a large and growing archive of learning videos, digital books and simple but engaging exercises.
Teach Your Monster to Read
This usually costs subscription but, has been made free due to the school disruption. No matter how you feel after a couple of days of home-schooling, the titular monster isn’t your child. Instead, this gets children to create a monster and then teach it to read – a great way of learning themselves.
After a rocky start when some non-child-friendly videos made it through the filters, YouTube has worked hard to make its official children’s app something parents can trust. It includes a dedicated learning category collecting great videos about science, nature, space and other topics.
Scratch is the programming environment that a lot of children will be familiar with already from school. ScratchJr is an app version designed for five to seven-year-olds, although older children can have fun with it, too. It uses coding blocks to create programs for games, animation, music and other creative tasks.
King of Maths: Maths Learner
This recently released maths game challenges children in quickfire sums, increasing in difficulty if they keep answering correctly. They write the numbers on the touchscreen with their finger rather than tapping buttons.
Google Arts & Culture
Field trips and museum visits may be out of bounds for a while, but Google’s Arts & Culture app at least has virtual tours of more than 1,200 museums and galleries. Children can look and read as well as curate their own lists of favourite artworks to share.
If music lessons have gone out of the window, Simply Piano is one of the best app alternatives. It helps children (or adults!) learn songs and then listen to their playing on any real piano or keyboard to give feedback. Two courses are free.
Women Who Changed the World
This is a history app focused on a range of famous women who “helped us understand our world better, and make it a better place to live in”. Marie Curie, Malala Yousafzai, Amelia Earhart are some among the women profiled through animation and storytelling.
Duolingo isn’t just a fun and popular way to learn languages that children already study at school. It covers more than 30, including Arabic, Hindi, Hebrew and Welsh. It’s well designed, rewarding short daily sessions of practice. It’s free, but in-app purchases remove ads and unlock some extra features.
Kahoot! isn’t just an app, it’s also a website: a big collection of trivia quizzes created by other users. It’s going to really come into its own as schools close. It’s also a good group-learning experience: one person hosts a game and the others compete on their own devices.
The TED talks archives are a wonderful repository of brain food for all ages – older children included. Search for history, science, nature – anything – and see what comes up. The talks are not all suitable for children, but many are.
Swift is Apple’s own programming language, and Swift Playgrounds is its app for teaching people how to use it. It’s for adults as well as children, but it’s certainly accessible for the latter, with its lessons presented as coding puzzles that will give people the skills needed to start making their own apps and games; it is on Apple’s iPad.
Let us know at email@example.com if these apps were useful, or if you come across some other apps!
Image courtesy: Google
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