I’ve been involved in a few discussions this week about whether it’s a good idea for young kids to have access to expensive electronic equipment like iPads. I don;t think it’ll come as a surprise to anyone to learn that I am very much in favour of kids having access to iPads, having seen first hand with both kids how beneficial and educational they are. With perfect timing the geekson has discovered a new app this week, and it really is showing its educational benefits already…
I have mentioned TallyTots™ – Spinlight Studio (£1.49 – iPad only) before, in a previous app round up post, but at the time it was just the geekdaughter who was showing an interest in it. In the last couple of weeks the geekson has discovered this app in a big way, and it’s definitely his current favourite. Designed to introduce the concepts of numbers and counting, this app allows the child to choose a number, then it counts up to that number, and then the child gets a little mini-game to play involving the number in some way. My personal favourite is when you have to get the squirrel to stuff his mouth full of 19 nuts! Over the last few days we’ve noticed that the geekson has started trying to count along with the app, and I managed to catch this on film:
If you can’t see the video above, here is a direct link to watch it on YouTube.
So yes, I genuinely think the iPad is a wonderfully educational and beneficial device, and I am constantly amazed by what both my kids can do with it.
Whilst I’m on the subject, I have to also mention Maths, age 3-5 – EuroTalk (Free, with additional in-app purchases – iOS Universal). I downloaded this app for the geekdaughter, and she’s been getting on with it really well. She got up early the morning after I downloaded it, found it on the iPad, and before I was even awake she’d found the new app, managed to navigate typing her name in all on her own (first time ever), and started working through the puzzles! This is a nice quality app, and is designed to support foundation stage maths for primary school. There are 10 modules, but only the first one, sorting and matching, is free – the others cost £1.99 each, or you can buy all 9 for £9.99. Although there’s a lot of content in the first module which I hope means the others are equally good, these prices seem high to me, and I haven’t yet bought the extra modules.
I find out about apps in the strangest of places. In this month’s Families Cheshire magazine that we get sent home from nursery I read an article about a local mum who had developed her own app for pre-schoolers. I’m always keen to support local business so I had to check it out. Pre-School Classroom – The Pre School Apps Academy (£1.49 – Universal – with a Lite version available free) is a collection of mini games all aimed at pre-school children, and includes such things as I-spy, phonics, line tracing and counting. It’s a well through out app with some great content, but it moves a little slowly for my liking (if it were me I’d have less clapping after the child completes each mini game), but the geekdaughter seemed to like it, although she hasn’t gone back to it very often.
STOP PRESS! I just found out that Baby Learns Colors – Bebebe Co. (iPad only) is FREE for today only – usual price £1.99. This is an appealing, brightly coloured app which introduces different colours to your toddler. The default narration is with a US accent but the app description says you can record your own voice too. Worth grabbing while it’s free If you are reading this later than March 30th there is a Lite version you can grab to try out before buying the full version – Baby Learns Colors Lite – Bebebe Co.
To make sure you always get alerts of free or reduced apps why not join the new Apps for Parents Facebook group? It’s already a great community sharing app recommendations, reviews, and announcements of free apps to download. Please come on over and join in!
That’s it for this week. Check back next week for more app reviews.
Disclosure: An asterisk (*) denotes an app I for which I received a promo code and thus did not purchase myself. The links above incorporate my iTunes affiliate ID. If you make a purchase after clicking on a link it doesn’t cost you any more money, but you contribute a few pennies towards the upkeep of this site. All prices were correct at the time of writing.