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In a little more than a decade, the combination of the iPhone and apps have transformed so many parts of our lives. From social networks and communication to games and much more, the iPhone has made learning, play, and everything in between easier and more enjoyable.
One area that’s seen huge change is education. Thanks to the iPhone’s slim form factor, easy to use software, and touchscreen, even toddlers can use the smartphone to learn while having fun.
Since there’s a plethora of education software available to download from the App Store, we’re highlighting 10 great titles for kids of different ages to try out.
1. Endless Alphabet
The ABCs come alive in Endless Alphabet. Featuring more than 100 words, the interactive puzzle game builds knowledge of both letters and vocabulary.
After selecting a letter of the alphabet, kids are presented with a specific word with the letters scrambled. Children then need to place the letters back in the correct position. Then they’ll see a fun animation and a quick voiceover that teaches the definition of the word.
The colorful words jump off the screen of the iPhone, especially the OLED screen of the iPhone X, and definitely should keep toddlers and beginning readers entertained.
Download: Endless Alphabet ($9)
While the NASA app isn’t made specifically for children, older kids with an interest in space will certainly find something to enjoy. Along with being able to view more than 15,000 images from the space agency, kids can watch live NASA TV and even see live streaming video of Earth from the International Space Station.
Amateur astronomers can take a look at upcoming sighting opportunities of the ISS and get notifications before they happen. You’ll also find a comprehensive list of NASA mission information and upcoming launches.
Download: NASA (Free)
3. Peekaboo Barn
An iconic educational app, Peekaboo Barn is still a perfect way to entertain and educate younger children and even toddlers.
After starting the app, kids will hear an animal inside of a barn. They can tap the screen to see who is inside. Parents can select from narration with child’s voice in English or an adult in English or Spanish.
There are also a number of world languages available like Mandarin, Cantonese, Hindi, Japanese, and more. As a nice touch, anyone can record their voice so kids can play with anyone like mom, dad, or grandparents.
Download: Peekaboo Barn ($2)
Featuring 26 fun characters, Thinkrolls combines a platformer and puzzle game to help young minds learn and have fun. The app offers 207 different levels of learning with different puzzles. All the puzzles allow children to experiment with real-world science concepts including gravity, heat, buoyancy, speed, elasticity, friction, and more.
And while the game is made for kids, it can easily be something the entire family can enjoy as there are slots to track the progress of nine different players. Younger kids ages 3-5 can take advantage of an easy mode while the hard mode is for children ages 5-8.
Download: Thinkrolls ($4)
5. Sesame Street
Kids can visit Sesame Street anytime they want with this great app. Along with video clips featuring popular characters including Elmo, Cookie Monster, Abby Cadabby, and more, there are a whole host of educational games available to play.
Children can access their recently viewed videos, save favorite shows for later, and even search for characters or topics. Mom and dad can also search for specific videos for a child’s learning goals including science, literacy, health, math, science, emotional development, and more.
And if your kids can’t get enough the iconic show, there are a huge stable of other Sesame Street apps available to download in the App Store.
Download: Sesame Street (Free)
6. Toca Lab: Plants
Think of Toca Lab: Plants as Little Shop of Horrors without any blood and much more educational. Kids start off the app with one plant and can perform different experiments to find 35 characters, each with their own unique personalities.
There are five different locations, like a watering tank, grow light, and cloning machine, to visit with each plant. While exploring the basics of botany, kids will find plants from five different actual groups and even learn the common name and scientific name of real-world plants.
Download: Toca Lab: Plants ($3)
7. Stack the States 2
Yes, even the less-than-thrilling subject of geography can come to life with an iPhone app. As you could probably guess by the name, Stack the States 2 is all about the 50 states of the United States.
Kids can learn state capitals, cities, shapes, landmarks, flags, and other great information about the United States. A great interactive map features major cities while also providing a 3D elevation view of each state. There are also numerous 3D models of landmarks and locations in the United States. Each state also has its own flash card with important information.
Download: Stack the States 2 ($3)
8. Sago Mini Puppy Preschool
Another great game for both toddlers and younger learners, Sago Mini Puppy Preschool covers a wide variety of different topics including numbers, shape recognition, matching, and fun with music.
Some of the fun activities include dunking 10 cute puppies in a giant outdoor tub to help counting skills and feeding two of the dogs while learning color matching. As a fun feature, kids can learn how to count in more than 15 languages. The app can also be used without an internet connection, making it great for a road trip or flight.
Download: Sago Mini Puppy Preschool ($3)
9. Coral Reef by Tinybop
Your kids don’t have to know how to swim to explore the ocean in Coral Reef by Tinybop. Children can both play with and learn about ocean creatures like black tip reef sharks, green sea turtles, crabs, parrotfishes, and many more.
Along with learning about how different creatures live in the ecosystem, interactive text labels are available in more than 20 different languages to help with vocabulary. Parents can even download a special handbook from Tinybop with facts, hints, and discussions questions to help kids make the most of the app.
Download: Coral Reef by Tinybop ($3)
10. TinyTap, Games by Teachers
A comprehensive learning suite, TinyTap features learning games and content from the Oxford University Press.
The coolest feature is the ability for kids to turn an idea for an educational game into reality without needing any coding skills. They can share the results through the app. And that should definitely give a child confidence to make the leap to learn vital coding skills when the time comes.
Offering content for ages 2-8, parents can select a specially curated curriculum of games for their children. Progress is available to view at any time. Some of the areas where kids can learn include English, math, social skills, and science. There is even content for special needs learners.
While the app is free to download, you’ll need to subscribe to get the most out of all the features and apps.
Download: TinyTap, Games by Teachers (Free with in-app purchases)
Kids Can Learn While Having Fun on iPhones
While the iPhone is just one platform for kids to have fun and learn with apps, the huge variety of titles makes the App Store a true standout. Whether you have a toddler, an older child, or even a tween, there is an app perfect for them to learn more about the world around them.