Top Ten iPad Games for Babies or Toddlers by TheiPhoneAppReview.com
iPhones and iPads are wonderful entertainment and teaching devices, especially for the very young. All kinds of apps have been developed that are intended to be used by your infant, baby, toddler or little one. This is very good, as long as the apps are well designed and provide a rich, stimulating experience that you child will enjoy and be happy to play with.
A child is not going to spend time with an app that is not entertaining, regardless of the underlying value relative to their intellectual, moral, visual, auditory, motor skills or emotional development.
It’s up to you, as a parent, to find the apps that target the area of learning that is important to you and that it’s done in a way that is entertaining to your child and, equally important, fair and honest from a business perspective. That is, you want apps that don’t show third-party ads to your child, show ads that cover the play area so they will inadvertently be touched, or, quite frankly, cost too much.
With all that in mind we have collected an array of apps that, we think, are excellent examples of not only top notch educational and graphical design, but are also fair and honest about the apps and how they monetize them.
Our criteria are:
Bright, colorful graphics that are fun and engaging
An interesting, fun, and, hopefully, effective approach to teaching your child something
Free to download so you can try them to see if you like them
Full versions, substantial sections unlocked, or IAPs that don’t exceed $2.99
While there may be ads for you right at the beginning of the app, once you start it for your child, no ads are shown to them.
We also like how these apps are very easy on letting kids know they’ve gotten something wrong and rewards them in a fun way when they get it right.
There should also be a “For Parents” section protected in some way from your child accessing it, often this is done by presenting a simple math problem, where you can adjust the settings and find out more about the developers, receive guidance on how to best use the app, and if there are paid options, to select and pay for them.
Here are ten outstanding educational games that are perfect for your preschooler, your child in kindergarten, and older kids as well.
Baby Piano Lite! – Baby Cortex – (for children between 9 – 36 month) – This is a wonderful musical app for your little one. It’s one of a number of very nice apps for children from Baby Cortex. The only ad shown at the beginning of this app is for for its full version. It shows a keyboard with one full scale, (do, re, mi, la, fa, so, la, ti, do) using colorful keys with the note name on each key.
Even the free version offers some great options such as you can record and play back your little Beethoven’s composition, follow the blinking key to play a song, hide the note names, and play animal sounds in addition to tones.
Once you’ve had a chance to use this app you can then decide if you want to opt for the full version for $2.99 that includes more songs, more animals, 2 player mode, and a baby lockmode.
Peekaboo Kids – The Barn of Kinder Kids – (for children between the ages 0 – 4 years) – This a very well designed app that works especially well for very young children. The app offers two games for free with four more that can be unlocked for $2.99. In the first game, animals appear behind the barn doors after you touch the doors to open them.
In the second game a male voice asks you to point to the animal that he names. When you point to the correct animal the barn doors open and you see the animal. This is a fun peek-a-boo game that also teaches animal names.
Educational Animal Games – Antti Lehtinen – (for children the ages 1 – 3 years) – This fun animal puzzle game takes the traditional wooden shape puzzle game to a new level. Like its wooden counterpart, your child moves the animal to the outline with the same shape.
However, unlike the wooden puzzle, when a correct match is made bubbles appear that your child can fun with by touching them to make them pop.
A nice thing about this app is that there is no negative feedback at all. If an animal is put in the wrong place is just doesn’t go in.
On the first screen where you select the game, if you tap an image for more information you’re presented with having to solve a simple math problem to access that screen.
This, presumably, insures that a child will not mistakenly wind up on that screen. Once there though, you can unlock 28 new animals for $1.99 or a collection of Moving Puzzles, Challenging Puzzles and a World Map for $1.99.
Laugh & Learn Shapes & Colors Music Show for Baby – Fischer Price – (for kids ages 6 months and up) – We have to say that Fischer Price has done an outstanding job with all of their fine children’s apps. In addition to the stellar production values, one of the things we love about their apps is that they are not only free, but they also have no upgrades or IAPs of any sort, and no ads.
Most developers need to have some way to make a return on their hard work, and we totally respect that, but in the case of Fischer Price it seems they’re content to simply promote their brand, and you can benefit from that.
There are two levels to choose from along with a screen that offers tips and guidance to the parent for how to best use the app, and how to disable multi-touch gestures so your child cannot accidentally leave the game.
In the first level, when you touch the play area different shapes appear that play peek-a-boo with you and tell you the name of their color and their shape. You can drag the shape around and leave a trail of stars.
There are also laughs and giggles in a child’s voice that makes the activity more fun. The second level has a compact piano keyboard for some musical fun with the same colored shapes.
Laugh & Learn Animal Sounds for Baby for iPad – Fischer Price – (for kids ages 6 months and up) – This app follows all the same high quality characteristics of their Shapes & Colors app but now your child is learning about animals and the sounds they make.
In this game an animal appears and a pleasant female voice tells you about the animal and asks you to identify them. A nice addition is that even the background objects are interactive and respond to being touched; the flowers bring out a bumble bee, the trees bring out some birds, and the sun spins. All while an upbeat nice jingle is playing.
Bogga Vacation Lite – Boggatap – (for kids ages 2 and up) – Are you planning a family vacation? This app is a terrific way to get your toddler involved and help them understand what’s going on. In this fun puzzle game your child is going on vacation. The activities happen in their normal sequence so the first step is to pack your bag.
A colorful suitcase appears items placed around it. When you touch it, it opens revealing a number of blank shapes that correspond to the items around the suitcase and you have to select one item of the appropriate shape and then move it to it’s spot in the suitcase.
After packing your suitcase the next scene has you at the airport and you have to select the correct items to give to the attendant.
This gives you ample experience with the game to decide if you want to continue with it. Additional levels are in the full version for $2.99.
Tizzy Zoo Veterinarian Lite – Tizzy Labs, LLC – (for kids ages 2 – 6 years) – Does your child love animals? It’s natural for children to want to help animals and this app lets they experience the satisfaction of helping at the zoo. This is a great app to tap into your child’s love of animals.
To start the game you select boy or girl and then your preferred skin tone, hair color, eye color and accessories color.
It’s a very interactive game where your child will help to take care of animals on one of the continents. The full version for $2.99 provides more animals and more games.
Toonia Colorbook – 3fs – (for kids ages preschool and up) – This coloring app is a real standout. You get three sets different themed coloring pages, eight pages per set, for free and the option to buy two sets of 24 additional coloring pages at $1.99 per set.
There are eight colored crayons to choose from and one eraser. After selecting a crayon or the eraser you simply run your finger around the coloring page and have fun!
Once your masterpiece is done, you can access, by swiping down, the option to text message, email, save, copy or print it. Very cool.
TinyHands Sorting 1, Educational puzzle Games for babies & toddlers – TINYHANDS APPS EDUCATIONAL LEARNING GAMES FOR BABIES TODDLERS AND KIDS LTD – (for kids ages 2 – 4 years) – This is an excellent app for fostering your child’s cognitive development. Each of the three free games gives your child the task of sorting and separating items based on their color, size or shape.
Completing the task is rewarded with cheers, clapping and a fun animation. The full version for $2.99 adds nine additional games.
Preschool and Kindergarten Learning Games – Kevin Bradford LLC – (for kids in preschool & kindergarten) – And last but definitely not least, and in our view the app with the overall best bank for the buck, is an app that really covers a lot of ground. It starts you off with two games for free; Shapes & Colors for 2 years+, Letters for 3 years+.
In the shapes game your child is asked in a pleasant female voice to pick out one of four shapes on the screen. If they don’t get it, the voice simply says “almost”, “try again” or “so close”. When they get it right she says “way to go”, “super” or something similarly encouraging.
For the letters your child is asked to touch the word that starts with a certain letter, which also has an appropriate image next to it. After a correct response the letter is spoken followed by the word. These two games may be all you need but they also gives you plenty of time to evaluate the app for possible purchase of the full version for $2.99
In closing we encourage you to keep an eye out for the high quality apps that your child can really benefit from, and we think all of these developers have demonstrated a remarkable ability to create stunningly attractive, engaging and educational games that your child will have hours and hours of fun with while they learn.
Find your next iPad children’s game at TheiPhoneAppReview.com
What do YOU think? We’d love to hear your comments, try some of these and let us know!