How to Choose Apps for Your Kids

How to Choose Apps for Your Kids


Letting little ones play with the iPad or iPhone is a surefire way to keep them entertained for hours at a time. Of course, some of the applications are not really suitable for children, so how can you pick the best ones for your kids? If you’ve felt confused about this before (or perhaps you just bought a new device and you’re curious as to how it can serve as a great parenting tool), then read on!

Age Level
While tight parental supervision is necessary for your elementary school children, you likely want to loosen the reigns a little bit when they reach their teenage years. Of course, this suggestion does not mean they can do whatever they want when it comes to apps, but they can browse through teen safe pages and do some perusing by themselves for apps they want. The majority of apps out there aren’t appropriate for children under 12, so keep this in mind.

The Noise Level
Here’s a familiar scenario: You’re out to dinner with family members including all of the little kids. Your son is being rather noisy at the table, and you’re feeling a little bit embarrassed that everyone around you is staring. Therefore, you bring out the iPad, and allow him to play some games. The only problem is that the application is actually just as loud, if not louder at some points, than your son! The mission has pretty much failed. Therefore, when you’re selecting applications for your children to play with when they are out, be sure to consider the setting and all of the people who will be around you. Loud games are fine at a sporting events, but quieter apps are more suitable for a restaurant. Most apps can be muted, but a few need sound to use, so check into this.

Educational Games

Parents are very concerned about making sure their children are ahead of the competition when it comes to school. As a result, they enroll them in school earlier and earlier and request that they play only educational games. If this description fits you, then it would be a wise idea to choose some educational games for your children. These types of games might teach them the fundamentals of the alphabet, or they might help your high schooler work through tough math problems that he or she cannot seem to tackle in class.

Don’t Forget Fun
While it’s important for children to focus on their studies, they also need time for fun. Try to find some games that allow them to develop their love for art, their appreciation for music or their understanding of a specific sports game. In a sense, these games are still educational because they are being taught about a subject; it just happens to be a subject that they love. Do not become so overly focused on “learning” games though. A few silly puzzles will give kids lots of laughs as will drawing some pictures and uploading them to the computer to print them out.

Picking out the right games for your children really depends on their unique personalities and what they enjoy. As with any parenting method, as you likely already know, no exact formula exists, and parenting needs vary from individual to individual. Talk to your children about the type of games that they would like to use and go from there.

Muriel Bainbridge writes about parenting, technology and more. His proudest work is on 15 Great iPad Apps for Students and Professionals in Psychology.

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One Response to “How to Choose Apps for Your Kids”

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