Top 12 Apps for Toddlers
~:: by Val Curtis of Bonbon Break ::~
Those little beings who challenge us on a daily basis have a need to be challenged too. While I am not an advocate for setting your 2 year old loose with your iPad or iPhone, I do believe there are some great apps out there to entertain (distract when needed – thinking doctor’s office) and share some lap time with your kids. They are not meant to replace books, but to add something for an occasional bit of fun and learning.
We have dozens of apps on our electronic devices, and there are plenty that I really like (and can tolerate) but these are the 12 that are toddler-chosen:
1) Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood – Oh you know we just love Angela, and well, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, Vol. 1 – Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood is adored in our house. His pleasant tunes are always welcomed and the app is just as golden. If you have a little one who is potty training, they will LOVE the bathroom choice!
2) Monkey Preschool Lunchbox – Two kids. Both LOVE this app. The tasks range from puzzles and matching activities to letter, shape and color recognition. The awards and positive reinforcement are thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated. Who doesn’t love a monkey that will do flips for you?
3) Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Animal Sounds – This is a great introduction app. It is very simple and responsive and the sweet little animals and songs will keep your toddler smiling and laughing.
4) Photo Touch Farm Animals – Warning…the voice on this app might drive you crazy, but your kids will adore it. Two rounds of kids trying to identify animals as they are called out and it is played again and again and again.
5) Five Little Monkeys – The traditional song with a spin! You can listen to a rock, country or pop version and interact with various items in the room. A two year old can get this app going on their own without assistance, a major perk.
6) PBS Kids Video – If we couldn’t love PBS enough, this app piles on the appreciation for their mission. Watch clips and full episodes of your favorite PBS Kids Shows, right at your finger tips!
7) I Hear Ewe – Such a simple idea, 12 drawings of animals. Click on one and you hear the sound the animal makes. Easy peasy and the littles just love it. On the second screen, there are 12 more animals and on the final screen 12 modes of transportation. “This is the sound a ____ makes” is what you will hear over and over. We know that toddlers love repetition and this app will give it to them.
8) Bugs and Bubbles – If you have kids between the ages of 2 and 7, they will LOVE this app. There are 18 different games exploring just about every area of learning with seemingly endless levels. At the very basic level, the child pops bubbles as they appear. The graphics are stunning and the music is quite possibly the most pleasant in a kids app.
9) Moo Baa La La La – Sandra Boynton’s books are well loved in our house, so when I saw this app, I had to get it. The story is narrated by her husband and the interactive aspects add a wonderful element of humor that will keep your little giggling. This app and the Bubbles mentioned in #8 are the apps that are routinely requested when my 2 year old grabs my iPhone.
10) Peekaboo Barn – Shake the iPhone or iPad and meet the animals hiding in the barn. First you hear them, then the barn doors slide open to show you the animal making the sound. Simple and brilliant.
11) Nighty Night, Little Sheep – My daughter had no tolerance for books until she turned 2. Before the switch was thrown, we would sit and navigate through this gentle, night night app every naptime and bedtime. Sweet sounds and adorable interactive animals lead your little to sleep. A personal favorite.
12) Wheels on the Bus – The traditional song “Wheels on the Bus” with an interactive spin. Users can tap the screen to spin the wheels, open and close the bus doors, swish swish swish the wipers. They may interact in English, Spanish, German, French and Italian with the music played either by a piano, cello, violin or kazoo. Your preschooler will love all of the choices, including recording their own voice to the song.
More lists coming soon…
ABOUT VAL: Val Curtis is the CEO and co-founder of Bonbon Break and the creator of the Food & Garden site Mental Chew. She is a former middle school science teacher who put her career on hold to be at home with her two babes.
When Val breaks away from her keyboard, she enjoys gardening, cooking, hiking, camping, tidepooling, sailing and potlucks. She gets a kick out of combing the web for recipes and then adapting them for her husband, family and friends to enjoy. Through her love of organic cooking, she became interested in growing her own produce and Mental Chew gave her the chance to combine her love of food and gardening as well as explore her new passion of photography.