As much of the country continues to learn from home, we’re all looking for ways to engage our kids in something other than YouTube and TikTok (well, that’s my house at least. If I have to watch another compilation of people dressed up as Teen Titans characters, I’m going to lose it). And while my kids’ awesome teachers have been sending so many great lessons and activities, I have grown frustrated trying to figure out what other apps and sites might entice Sophie, 8, and Juliette, 5, to spend screen time on skill development.
That’s why I was delighted to hear that many educational app developers have extended their free trial timelines, to give families a chance to really sink their teeth in and find programs and games that work for them. With help from our friends the App Store, we’ve compiled a quick list below. (Please note: Just type the app name into Search wherever you purchase your apps! They are available for both Apple and android devices.)
Hungry Caterpillar Playschool: Colourful, interactive lessons for kids aged five and under in spelling, math, problem solving, science, nature and creative arts, featuring the famous caterpillar. They have even added meditation in these uncertain times.
Endless Learning Academy: Early development activities for kids aged 5 and under around literacy, early numeracy, music, art and Spanish. Prepare your child for preschool, kindergarten, first grade and beyond with this interactive educational app (and the help of some adorable little monsters!).
HOMER Reading: Personalized learn-to-read apps with thousands of lessons on phonics, sight words, ABCs and more for kids aged two to eight.
Montessori Preschool: Covers phonics, reading, writing, numbers, colors, shapes, nursery rhymes, colouring and even coding. Designed by certified Montessori teachers with years of classroom experience, this is a fun child-centred app, perfect for children aged three to seven.
12 Years and Under
Epic!: The leading digital library for kids with instant, unlimited access to 40,000 high-quality ebooks, audiobooks, learning videos and quizzes for kids 12 and under.
MathTango: Math made fun with addition, subtraction, multiplication and division for kids aged five to 10. This app is a classroom-tested combination of math puzzles (incorporating modern techniques that make math easier and more intuitive) and classic “world-building” activities found in games.
codeSpark Academy: A gamified coding app for kids aged five to nine that teaches basic logic and key programming concepts. codeSpark has introduced over 30 million kids in 190 countries to the ABCs of computer science with their lovable coding characters, the Foos.