Top three apps for pre-schoolers
The App Store is absolutely flooded with kids apps which can make it difficult to find the ones that, not only have educational value, but that your child will also enjoy. I have come across three fantastic ones recently which are tried and tested by my toddler and also get my seal of approval.
Alien Buddies is an app that your child will love to play and will learn so much while doing so. It is really well designed, with a kid friendly user interface and fun graphics that will instantly appeal to kids.
The games include matching, puzzle and dot-to-dot games which help to develop so many areas from number, shape and letter recognition both visually and aurally, to improving fine motor skills through the interactive features.
Little Fox Music Box
I was instantly impressed by the graphics and level of interactive features in the Little Fox Music Box iPad and iPhone app – it is definitely a lot more than just a sing along book. The app includes three songs which are London Bridge, Evening Song and Old MacDonald. You can switch karaoke mode on and off and it is available in both English and German.
There is an incredible amount of interactive features to discover in each of the songs from the bathing pig in Old Mac Donald to the London Bus with the diving crocodile in London Bridge and the Japanese tourists with their cameras flashing taking photos. In Evening Song, we love the owl you can throw into the night sky and who then comes floating back down, the bears who are enjoying a bedtime story and the many kites, bats and flying creatures waiting to be discovered in the mountains and the night sky.
In addition to the songs there is also a fantastic Fox Music Studio where everything you touch makes a noise and the cute little fox bops along to your wonderful music creations. Kids will love the singing frogs, the spiders that make scuttling sounds and the little mouse who is sucking on a straw. I have to admit I even spent quite a bit of time playing in the Music Studio myself after Ben had gone to bed.
Play Square is a very different kids iPad app. It uses what it refers to as ‘touchable television’ which allows children to interact on another level and play inside the story by searching and finding letters. The story is set in Word World, a place where everything from the dog, barn and cake are made out of letters. In this episode it is Dog’s birthday and all the animals are planning a surprise party and have to complete a number of tasks to get ready for it.
It is a highly interactive app with puzzles to complete, letters to find and words to build. Each time a task is completed you have to trace around a play square to progress to the next part of the story. I find this app to be on a very different level to other kids apps. It encourages them to find letters and then build words out of them which is fantastic for developing basic literary skills along with hand eye co-ordination and fine motor skills.
The graphics and animation are excellent, kids will love the story and the design is kid friendly with easy to use navigation and interactive features. It is aimed at kids aged 3-6 years.