learning apps

A dear friend posted on Facebook the other day, asking for suggestions of learning apps for her kids. So I don’t forget some of these, and so that you can get the benefit of the suggestions, I’m doing this post about the apps. These apps are android-based (since we have a Kindle HD) but many are cross-platform — just check if there is an iPad/iPod version or whatever you use.

  • Minecraft – is there anyone who hasn’t heard of this phenomenal building game? The pocket edition is great … altho if your kids really get into it, you might want to obtain the PC-version directly from the Mojang website.
  • Dragonbox Algebra 5+ and Dragonbox Algebra 12+ are great games for learning algebraic tools while having fun. The 5+ version is for kids aged 6 and older while the 12+ is for middle schoolers and older to enjoy (I even like to play it!).
  • X Construction allows the user to build bridges and then test their ability for trains to cross. The levels get progressively harder in the “game” mode; you have limited resources and wider spans. The app also allows you to build your own bridges (with unlimited resources) and then test to see if they’d really work. Love this so much more than bits of balsa all over the house! This way, the kids can test their ideas BEFORE building a real bridge.
  • Cut the Rope: Experiments and X-Physics remind me of the old Crazy Machines game we’ve played for years on the PC. I love these games where you have to solve the puzzle by using physics tools: levers, pulleys, gears, etc. The Cut the Rope seems to be geared at the younger crowd while X-Physics is more middle-/high-school level. Both are lots of fun!
  • Stack the States and Stack the Countries are great for learning geography. I also like that both of these games allow for up to 6 players to keep separate scores.
  • Name that Art and Famous Paintings make learning about fabulous works of art into a game. The Name that Art allows for setting length of game as well as number of paintings to download while Famous Paintings contains over 100 works of art with lots of trivia and the ability to zoom in on the art.

I love having the ability to obtain fun learning apps for the kids (and myself, too!). I’m from the era of expensive PC-based games so being able to get robust apps that are relatively inexpensive (there are many free, too!) is a great boon for me. The kids enjoy the games and are learning at the same time — definitely a win-win.

As I mentioned, we have the Kindle Fire HD which is a perfect size for game-play and gives us a great viewing experience. That said, many of these apps are available in different formats (Minecraft has an Xbox version).

Do you have any apps you’ve found work particularly well? Please let me know in the comments so I can check those out.sig block

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