As tested and selected by my Miss 4 1/2 – a 3 1/2 year iOS veteran.
Nearly all of these have iPad and iPod touch/iPhone versions, and are in the free->$5 range (some also have free ‘lite’ versions you can try out).
This was the first app our then 9 month old used. Very simple of course, just tap the image that links to the sound being made. Ask what the name of the old iPhone that she uses is tho, and even to this day she will reply ‘Clara’ .
Her top choices (based on which apps she independently goes back to and spends the most time on):
- choose characters, move them with your finger and talk – and Puppet Pals turns it all into a movie. Great for imagination and developing oral language.
- interact with 5 spaces in a play house – amazing level of detail and interaction possibilities.
Art Maker by Playschool
- free and provides great picture making options and scenes
Ansel & Clair
- a little more advanced, but even at age three this was a hit with lots of sections and animations to explore on a journey around Africa
Park Math or Draw and Tell, or anything by Duck Duck Moose
- all apps by Duck Duck Moose have great graphics and animation as well as songs and hidden interactions.
- aimed at Australian kids, it includes the right school font used by each state as kids practice letter formation
- allows kids to explore letters and sounds as well as to see how to use them to build words
- just a simple look around and find animals with some quiz questions, but this one has proved very popular on a recent week away.
- Great for co-ordination and getting a sense of the fun of playing music
- the original talking creature app – repeats what you say in fun and interactive ways – very good for developing oral language skills
- a letter tracing and word making app with fun activities like tipping the device to slide the letters around
Me Books – Lady Bird Classics
- animates old classic books and allows you to record as many animal sounds or readings of the story as you like yourself.
Monster at the end of the book
- just pure fun as you drive Grover more and more crazy as the story unfolds
A little more advanced:
Pirate Treasure Hunt
- younger kids may require help as there are some great problem solving puzzles
Bartelby’s Book of Buttons volume 1 & 2
- a step beyond Pirate Treasure hunt with an involved story and puzzles that prove a great challenge for kids when they are ready.
Also – Moms with apps is the best parent site for keeping up apps aimed at kids: