I try to keep Eli’s screen time to a minimum, but there’s a time and a place for everything -- and usually at 11AM brunch when he’s half-way between starved to death and needing a nap, is when the apps usually make themselves useful.
We definitely try to make sure that any TV shows or games he’s exposed to are educational, and these are a few that he’s a big fan of!
Shapes Toddler Preschool -- This is a pretty simply design app that packs a lot of punch. It covers everything from the alphabet, to shapes and numbers, colors and types of bugs by using fun matching games, flash cards, drag and drop -- and then rewards them with lots of clapping and a “sticker page”. The basic version is a buck, but you can get the entire bundle for under $5. We’ve been using this app since Eli was 18 months old, and have absolutely gotten our money’s worth. It’s still his favorite app when we’re grocery shopping, or on a long car-trip.
Trucks HD -- Every single app that Duck Duck Moose makes is fantastic. My husband first heard about their Itsy Bitsy Spider game last year from a friend, and we’ve since then we’ve bought nearly a dozen different apps from the makers. The Trucks game is E’s favorite from the bunch, because he gets to drive cars through dirt, wash them off, pick up garbage and work on a construction site. Most of the Duck Duck Moose apps are for kids 2-5, and we’ve found that for $2 each, they make a great activity for snuggling in bed on Sunday mornings when my husband and I need a few more minutes of sleep.
Wombi Helicopter -- E went through a pretty hardcore helicopter fanboy stage, and literally didn’t talk about anything except helicopters all day long. We got this app last year, which at the time was a little bit too difficult for him to use, as it’s listed as ‘suitable for 4+’ -- users are able to ‘build a helipcopter’ using a variety of designs and then fly their helicopter over a city, and land safely on a heli-pad without crashing. To design, and fly, all that’s needed are some fine-tuned motor skills to drag, drop, and tap the screen, which at a few months shy of 3 years old, he’s able to finally get his helicopter to the heli-pad without any ill-fate.
Here are some other apps from my friends and bloggers Amy, Jen and Urban Cub!
Amy Parker Anderson from Parker Etc
Amy's 10 month old daugter Parker Mae uses two apps -- "just for fun and only when we are on an airplane usually. They help so she doesn't grab the hair of the person in the seat in front of us!"Crazy Piano
Laugh & Learn™ Shapes & Colors Music Show for Baby
Jen Lula blogs over at Jen Loves Kev
Jen has two daughters Finley and Rowan. Below are the apps that her girls use.