Tablets and smartphones – either using the iOS (iPad and iPhones) or Android (including Kindle Fire) platform – are among the recent technology advancements that can contribute to making learning or education fun for your child. A child as young as one year old can learn to swipe and press the screen, and the device interacts with him in fun ways through sounds, sights, funny animations, and more. With tablet and smartphone apps, your toddler or baby engage deeply with activities and hold his concentration longer.
Educational apps can teach or introduce your baby or toddler to a variety of skills – from hand-eye coordination to ABC’s, math, and problem-solving.
The best way to use smartphones and tablets is for you to play and interact with your child. Although smartphones and tablets are used by some parents as babysitters, and this is even encouraged by some so-called experts, they should not be used as replacement for parenting. Machines cannot interact as effectively as a real human, especially with kids younger than 2 years old. It is advised that you play with your toddler using the device, and if you have to leave the device alone with your child, it should comprise a very small part of his overall play.
Below is a list of the best educational apps for iOS and Android, organized according to specific skills and learnings that they teach to your young child:
When your baby or toddler touches the tablet with these apps, something in the tablet quickly happens. This entertains your child, and encourages him to touch the tablet more. As he becomes more proficient in touching objects on the tablet, he develops hand-eye coordination. This skill is necessary for being good in many simple day-to-day activities, as well as more complex ones including sports.
Your child will have fun popping the balloons by touching them as they appear on the screen. The balloons give a delightful sound when popped.
Slide & Spin
This app also develops fine motor skills using four basic motions: turning, sliding, spinning, and pushing of a button. By doing these motions with his fingers, your baby or toddler reveals fun objects including a multicolored cow and multicolored balloons. A voice recording feature adds your own voice to each image.
This simple app is comprised of four mini games for your toddler to make something entertaining happens when he touches the tablet. He can make colorful stars burst and fireworks explode. As your child becomes skillful in moving his fingers through the screen, the app enables him to free draw, and connect objects.
When your child learn shapes, he is using one of the basic educational processes: the observation of same and different. Shapes are also symbols, and learning shapes is a foundation for learning the alphabet as well as important math skills.
This app lets your child with ages 18 month to 3 year old play with shapes by making him put the shapes inside the holes that has the same shape, just like a real shape sorting toy. The basic squares, triangles, circles and stars are introduced. More shapes are found in the pro version. For older toddlers, numbers and alphabet modes are introduced to give them a head start in learning those.
Laugh & Learn Shapes & Colors Music Show for Baby
Babies learn about shapes and colors through fun animations, interactions, sounds, silly shape dancing and sing-along songs, brought to you by the company famous for quality toys, Fischer-Price.
Your toddler learns to differentiate and organize the diverse world around him by colors. Your toddler learn colors to prepare him for language, as well as creative thinking and arts.
Colors Toddler Preschool
The app teaches your toddler colors through colorful quizzes and fun rewards. It features bright, high resolution artwork and fun music to keep your toddler engaged. The app has 3 sections: quizzing, flashcards and toy box. In quizzing, your toddler is rewarded by applause when he touches the right colored item. In flashcards, your toddler identifies the color in simple pages. In Toy Box, your child pops differently colored balloons across the screen.
Coloring Farm Touch To Color Activity Coloring Book For Kids and Family Preschool Starter Edition
This is a great coloring book app featuring eye-catching illustration of farm animals. Your kid will have fun exploring the farm where every object he touches on screen fills with color or gives him a surprise. Play this app with your toddler to introduce him to colors. Your child will also learn about what’s going on in the farm, and the animals that live there.
This simple app teaches your toddler about colors through music and pressing on buttons. The voice identifies the color when your toddler touches a colored button. The simple interface makes it easy for your child to play.
Learning the alphabet, and more
Learning the alphabet is, of course, the first step to reading and spelling. Apps help kids get interested in the alphabet early and learn them the fun way.
Zoo – listen & learn
Animals from A to Z are shown in their habitat, their characteristics, and the sounds they make through descriptive rhymes. Along with the alphabet, your toddler will learn fun animal facts. This app is also available both in English and Spanish.
Learning Letters Puppy
This Fisher Price app has 4 modes of play. The ABC mode presents the letters of the alphabet with fun animations when your child touches the screen. The other modes teach numbers, shapes and colors, and music.
ABC Alphabet Phonics
The app teaches your baby or toddler the alphabet by presenting the letters with cartoon kids, animals, monkeys or sketches. It teaches the alphabet by sight, sound and touch. The app also speaks the name of the letter and your child or baby plays by identifying the letter with an on-screen tap. When your child picks the correct letter, the app congratulates your child and moves on to the next question. You can personalize the questions by adding your own pictures and voice through the built-in microphone.
Although these apps are meant for your toddler to play by himself, it is recommended that you should play these apps with your toddler because nothing will take the place of true human interaction in learning words.
Talking to Toddlers
This is a highly rated fun resource for your toddler to encourage him to talk and improve his vocabulary. It is packed with 12 children’s books as well educational activities, games, and puzzles that encourage your child to listen and talk back.
Talking Carl & Gugl
Funny creatures Carl and Gugl repeat any sound your toddler makes in a hilarious voice. For your child it would seem like the characters are interacting with him, and this would encourage him to make sounds or say words. Carl and Gugl can also be poked, tickled, swiped and annoyed in many interactive ways.
Pocoyo, the playful boy from the TV series plays with your toddler in this app. With talking Pocoyo, your child can talk to Pocoyo and he will repeat everything your child says in a funny voice. Your child can also tickle him, make him dance, and play musical instruments.
Develop A Love For Reading
The love of reading has many benefits. The love of reading can be instilled while still a toddler. This involves making reading a happy experience. Apps make reading more entertaining because they have interactivity, pop up surprises and fun colors. It is important for you to read to your toddler, and make reading a positive experience so that his memory of his experience with his activity with you will give reading positive associations.
Read with your kid in a fun way with this apps. When using these apps, it is Important that you interact with your kid – talk to him about what he is seeing, what you are doing, what is happening, etc. Keep in mind that reading apps should not replace reading to him a real book, but just an occasional educational treat.
Many excellent reading apps or interactive ebooks are available in the app stores, below are some of the best:
Moo, Baa, La La La!
Toddlers will love this interactive book app. As you and your toddler go through the “pages” of this electronic pop-up book, you will enjoy hearing animal sounds, and discover fun surprises as you touch the various objects in the illustrations. Individual words are also pronounced with the touch of the finger.
Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You?
This interactive ebook features the beautiful, original art of Dr. Suess. You and your toddler will enjoy the hilarious interactive elements and the wacky words and sounds as you go through the story of a man who is a sound-making wonder. Individual words are highlighted as the story is read and words zoom up when pictures are touched.
Green Eggs and Ham – Dr. Seuss
This classic Dr. Suess children’s book about Sam-I-am who never gives up trying to convince his friend that green eggs and ham are a tasty treat, is adapted as an ebook with lively interactive animations. Your toddler will enjoy the wacky rhymes and whimsical illustrations. To promote reading for your toddler, individual words are highlighted as the story is read and words zoom up when pictures are touched.
Berenstein Bears Go on a Ghost Walk
Papa Bear is put in charge of the Bear Country School’s Ghost Walk. He has everything he needs to make it a really spooky night — cobwebs, jack-o’-lanterns, and scary monsters, Frankenbear and Grizzula. Plus, he has two excellent little helpers, Sister and Brother Bear. You and your toddler will have fun going through the interactive funny – scary elements in this ebook. To promote reading for your toddler, individual words are highlighted as the story is read and words zoom up when pictures are touched.
Learning Numbers and Counting
Learning numbers and counting is the foundation for the ever-important math skills.
Laugh & Learn Let’s Count Animals
Babies and toddlers learn about numbers and animals by interacting with fun animations, sounds and singalong songs in this colorful app by Fisher Price. The animals are counted when your child taps or tilts the screen. When your child counts to six, he’ll be rewarded with a song. When he counts to ten, he will be rewarded with an awesome parade of zoo animals.
Toddler Counting 123 HD
Through tapping the screen your child counts along and learn the names of animals, toys, household objects and more through cool sound effects and pleasant voice narration.
Farm 123 – StoryToys Jr
This app resembles a pop-up book, but with dazzling animations, beautiful illustrations, charming music score and sound effects, and fun interactivity. Kids will love to learn to count as they help Farmer Jo around the farm by playing with farm animals, putting them in the pen, and giving them a good wash. Your toddler win stars as he progress through the games to reinforce his learning the numbers 1 to 10 and the core concept of sorting.
Solving puzzles while having fun is a way for your toddler to learn and stimulate his brain without him being aware of it. Your toddler is having fun while honing his skill at problem-solving.
Toddler Kids Puzzles PUZZINGO
Solving puzzles is one of the best way for your toddler to give his brain a workout, and apps such as Puzzingo makes it possible for your child to do this while having fun. With Puzzingo your child builds vocabulary, memory and cognitive skills while being entertained with animations, sounds and fun interactivity.
Animal Puzzle For Toddlers
Your toddler fills in pieces of pictures, very much like a wooden puzzle jigsaw pieces. The game teaches your child spatial relationship skills. As your child becomes more adept, you can increase the difficulty.
When your child learn nursery rhymes, he develops his language skills as he learn words and expand his vocabulary in a catchy way. It also develops his memory skills as his brain is stimulated to store the words and tunes he loves hearing.
Storybook Rhymes Volume 1
This is the first of the nursery rhymes app from Fisher-Price. Each app contains 2 nursery apps. In this first volume, your child will read and sing along to “One, Two, Buckle My Shoe” and “Itsy Bitsy Spider”. The rhymes are sung one line at a time by touching the screen, and the app teaches your toddler what a line is about through animations.
Playing music has many benefits to the brain. It is associated with increased language discrimination and development, improved school grades, and other mental benefits that continues to be experienced up to adulthood.
This app transforms your tablet into 14 kinds of musical instruments – from piano, to drums to synthesizer. It introduces your toddler to the sounds of different musical instruments and music-making!
Kids Piano Lite
This app introduces your young child to playing the piano and the basics of music. There are songs, games and exercises to encourage him to explore making tunes.
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