There’s been a lot of talk recently about educational apps. On one side, the recent American Academy of Pediatrics official screen time recommendations recognise that not all screen time is equal. The potential value our kids can get from watching high quality media content is well worth exploring.
At the same time, those same recommendations affirm what many of us have known for a long time. Most programs and apps that describe themselves as educational are in fact nothing of the sort.
The AAP holds up Sesame Workshop as one example of high quality educational content. We’re inclined to agree. In fact, our regular blog spot “Kidslox Reviews” has already looked at one of the Sesame Workshop’s app offerings and came away with a very positive impression.
Where to look
Where else can we go to find truly educational apps though? If you’ve not found it yet, check out Common Sense Media’s app review section. They provide parent focussed app reviews that include a rating for “educational value”.
As with so many things in life, we often find the best options through word of mouth recommendations. That’s why we decided to ask Kidslox users if their kids were using any educational apps that they thought were worth recommending.
The results are in
Sadly, the overwhelming response, from over two thirds of respondents was “no, we’ve not found anything worth recommending yet”. A poor indictment of the state of educational apps. Of those who did have a recommendation to give though, we’ve learned about over 180 educational apps used by the kids of Kidslox users.
That’s a few too many for us to present to you here. We’ll try to review some of them ourselves over the coming weeks though and pass on our thoughts. Here then is the countdown of the top 10 most recommended educational apps as chosen by Kidslox users :
9. Reading eggs – In the app store as Eggy 100 (free) and Eggy 250 ($1.99), these apps provide gamified recognition training of basic language elements.
7. IXL – Comprehensive English and Math practice across all grades, trusted by parents.
6. Brainpop – The Brainpop and Brainpop jr apps offer kids an accessible entry point for exploring a wide range of subjects by presenting them with weekly videos and quizzes.
5. Splash Math – For grades K to 5, Splash Math has got Math learning covered. With rave reviews and a slew of awards, Splash Math has more than earned it’s place at the table.
4. Quizlet – Very much the leading flash card app, users can tap into the intuitive learning system by making their own custom flash cards or use an existing deck contributed by other users.
3. Khan Academy – The pure scope of what Khan Academy offers puts it in a class of its own. With courses from Kindergarten through to University level studies across the full gamut of subjects, this free app is well deserving of it’s place at the top.
2. Kids A-Z (Raz Kids and more) – Kids A-Z is a portal app into one of the largest and most comprehensive systems for boosting child reading levels around. For both classroom and home use, the Kids A-Z app is essentially an extension of their existing award winning website.
1. ABCMouse – Our survey’s top educational app with significantly more parental recommendations than anything else reviewed. ABCMouse is an early learning program for ages 2 to 7. It includes interactive learning activities for a wide range of subjects, parent/teacher progress reports, a 30 day free trial and much more. Along with the recommendation of Kidslox parents, this means ABCMouse is clearly well worth looking into for your child’s device.
What’s your favourite?
So there you have it, the ten most recommended educational apps according to Kidslox users. Think they got it wrong? Or left out a corker? Tell us about your favourite educational apps in the comments below.