"Did she just say educational apps for toddlers? Why are we putting toddlers in front of a screen?"
Hold your horses, Nelly! I don't mean to imply that kids should be spending hours in front of a screen or gripping onto their tablet. I'm not really here to judge another mom - if she wants to plop her kid in front of a TV or put a tablet in their hands in Target, more power to her. I'm not too proud to admit that I have given my toddler screen time before. It's not my first choice of activity, but I am comfortable with this choice for my family.
So, what I intend to say is this: IF you are a parent that allows screen time for your kiddos, perhaps using that time to promote organic learning could create a net benefit! Teachers are integrating technology into their classrooms and curriculum at earlier and earlier ages. In a sense, helping your child learn to self-direct their education on a tablet will help prepare them to hit the ground running when they enter the classroom setting. Plus, learning should be fun! If screen time is a reward, and screen time means satiating your curiosity, learning becomes a fulfilling game (instead of a tedious bore).
These apps span a variety of ages and interests, but each one is geared toward making learning fun and easy for little ones.
This app, for iOS only, allows kids to build silly faces from common everyday objects. Think: a banana smile, marbles for eyes, and buttons for teeth! It's colorful and encourages imaginative play. Bonus: you don't have to clean up after!
Kids Vocabulary, Grammar & Languages App
Built for kids ages three through six, this app focuses on language development games. Conveniently, the game responds to your child's level of proficiency, self-adjusting to become more challenging as they master new skills. For only $19.99 per year, you can add up to four kids on each account - making this a winner for the whole family!
I love this app because it's made for my toddler! Well, really it's made for kids 5 and under, but he fits that mold! Interactive puzzles and playful sounds hold your toddler's interest and draw them back for more!
Geared to kiddos ages 2 through 6, Kids Academy offers countless activities both on- and off-screen! Focused on math, writing, reading, and phonics, the app offers varying levels of skill mastery. Younger kids focus on sorting and classifying objects. On the other end, older kids can complete topically-grouped activities by filling out a worksheet on what they've learned. This app is FREE and has a built-in way to factor in time that isn't spent staring at a screen.
If you're considering giving your kid some screen time, try one of these apps! It can't hurt - and hey, they might even learn something! While I love a good Blippi marathon (no, really - I do!), sometimes I want to give my toddler a little more substance. Educational apps are great fit for my family!
Do you allow your kid screen time? Are there any other apps I need to be looking into for my toddler? Give me your pro-tips on Twitter @pi3sugarpi3.