Best educational apps for kids

These mobile apps are so fun, they won’t even know they’re learning!

According to Phineas and Ferb, there are “a hundred and four days of summer vacation.” While that may be an exaggeration, you might still be looking for ways to help reduce the summer brain drain in your children. Educational apps help keep the learning quotient at an all-time high and the kids won’t even know because they’ll be having so much fun.

For the younger crowd:

Endless Alphabet | by Callaway Digital Arts Inc.


From the creators of Sesame Street’s Monster at the End of this Book, this clever alphabet app will have your child in giggle fits with the loveable character letters, each with their own voice and personality. Words aren’t typical simple three-letter words often found in alphabet learning and early reading. Let your kids try “Gargantuan” on for size … pun totally intended! Kids can see and hear the words. The characters then act out the word while the voice-over gives a very clear definition. Learn letters, patterns, phonics and enhance vocabulary, while having fun.

(iOS, Free)
Photo: Callaway Digital Arts Inc.

Kindergarten Reading | by award-winning developer Duck Duck


Moose Milo the meerkat and his sidekick Puffs, a little pink bird, teach relationships between letters and their sounds. The goal of the game is to collect animals for your habitat and create your own zoo scenes. Kids will love the colourful and playful animals, holding their interest while encouraging them to learn. There are nine different word and letter activities. With games like feeding the alligator all the words starting with a given letter, this app strikes a perfect balance between learning and playing. It also features a reporting tool that allows you to track your child’s progress.

(iOS, $1.99)
Photo: Duck Duck Moose

iWriteWords | by PT. Global Dinamika Informatika


This highly interactive and entertaining app teaches your child handwriting. It is often cited as an excellent app for children with special needs. It makes learning to write letters lots of fun. Bright artwork and childlike graphics mirror the word being spelled. You trace the letters with your finger in the numbered order as indicated, and the narrator names each letter and reads the word once all the letters have been traced. This one is equally great for learning letters and early reading.

(iOS, Lite Free, Upgrade $2.99)
Photo: PT. Global Dinamika Informatika

For bigger kids:

Brain Quest |by Workman Publishing Company


If you are a fan of Brain Quest flashcards, you’ll be excited to hear they offer their questions for kids about math, vocabulary, science, logic and more in a mobile app. There are five sets of games for grades 1-5. Each grade has 100 free questions. The “ding” sound effect lets you know that you correctly answered the question. Challenging, age-appropriate fun!

(iOS, Free for the first 100 questions per grade. $2.99 for each additional grade pack)

DragonBox | by We Want To Know


This award-winning game teaches algebra concepts to everyone ages 8 and up. It’s an engaging and interactive game that makes the learning process fun. It encourages independent thought and discovery just by playing the game. Through its progressive approach to introducing steps, concepts are reinforced through repetition. Children progress through levels at amazing speed. Each child has a different learning style, but my money is on this non-text based approach to algebra!

(iOS, Android, PC and Mac, $5.99)
Photo: We Want to Know You

Star Walk | by Vito Technology
If you have a budding astronomer, you will definitely want to snag this award-winning education app that assists users in locating and identifying more than 20,000 objects in the night sky. Highly interactive, it has star maps that display constellations, stars, planets, satellites and galaxies from anywhere on the planet.

(iOS, $2.99)
Photo: Vito Technology