We know you don’t want your kids doing the electronics thing all day every day this summer. But after they’ve had a good long turn outside and it’s time to come inside and cool down a bit, you might want to let them play with any of these great apps:
Creatures of Light was developed by the American Museum of Natural History and is a fascinating look at bioluminescence, which is the ability some organisms have to produce light. From the sea firefly to poisonous millipedes, the world of bioluminescence is amazing to view, for all ages. The museum apparently uses iPads in their exhibit and has used that content to create this app, which is well-done and should prove extremely interesting for older kids (and their parents and teachers.) Free.
A challenging game for kids 7 and up involving multi-tasking and organizational skills with a great deal of fun. You have to dock an endless stream of boats with cargo at a variety of docks. The boats will only drop their cargo at particular docks, adding to the challenge. If the boats come too close to each other you hear a warning toot on the horn and then it’s move a boat FAST or they’ll crash and you have to start all over again. The game speeds up with more and more boats trying to land their cargo. The add ons are great offering additional opportunities and variations on the same great game theme. Free.
Have the experience of running your own lunch-food restaurant. Serve customers, collect money, buy new things for your business to make more money. Try to keep the customers happy with the food they order. A fascinating and challenging game for kids 7 and up. Stand O’Food has a free version so you can try it out, but the full version is worth the investment. $5.99
Take the TV show viewing experience to the next level with the first in the appisode series, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse “Road Rally”. The appisode brings viewing and learning together in one interactive and cohesive experience! Touch, shake, swipe, drag and talk your way through an entire episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse right on your iPad. Participate directly in the storyline by completing various activities to help Mickey and friends cross the finish line! There’s laughter and fast-paced learning fun around every corner in Mickey’s Road Rally! Free.
A great app for kids ages 2-5. Catchy tunes played in the background make the building process fun. Toddlers can use bricks and explore various worlds while singing along with the songs. Preschoolers can learn the alphabet and improve their memory. Free.
Ahoy and welcome to Pirate School, Matey! Join Jake and crew for four fun-filled pirate themed classes and earn Badges of Honor and an Official Never Land Pirate Certificate. Classes include: Sailing, Pirate Band, Map and Spyglass and Pixie Dust. Free.
With Bobo, a little robot, kids 7 and up embark on a book-based journey to explore the scientific concepts of light. But instead of just reading material, this app is filled with videos, fun facts and hands-on explorations. This app transforms complicated science into a fun, interactive experience that blends learning with humor. $4.99
For kids 3-5, this rollicking app offers 17 pages of treasure hunting under the sea and is part book and part puzzles. Kids join an eccentric collector of rare buttons on a quest to find a stone button buried in the ocean’s floor. Unlike many book apps where the interactions on the pages are optional, in this app kids must solve puzzles on each page to move the story along. Kids will push buttons and flip switches to make things happen on the page, including navigating a water maze by tilting the iDevice to match the water’s current. This is the second in the series; so if you love it, download “Bartleby’s Book of Buttons Vol.1: The Far Away Island” too. $2.99