By Cynthia Ogidi In the middle of the excitement generated…
Education is a life-long pursuit, and it starts at birth. Many moons ago oral stories, and later books, audio and video were ever-prevalent in the larger educational sector. With the advent of computers and now applications, the educational resource market is experiencing an exciting renaissance.
Apps are dramatically shifting the way in which adults (teachers, parents, etc) interact and foster good educational study habits in their children. They are an invaluable resource, numbering over 200,000 on the App Store alone. By 2022 m-learning app development industry is expected to reach close to 245,000 apps and honestly, only onward and upward from there!
On the Apple App Store, the education section is the third most popular category, only surpassed by business and games. There is a plethora of literature surrounding the amount of time children should be spending with tablets and similar platforms to access apps, but when supervised by an aduItand engaged in an interactive manner, the benefits of educational apps are extraordinary.
First, we’re going to dive in to the best apps for kids under 11.
Educational Apps for Kids under 11
For the smallest of the group, kids 3 to 5, Elmo Loves 123s is a must have for any parent. Teachers in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten have also incorporated this app into their instructional methodology as it lays out in a very simple manner how to identify and subsequently count from 1 to 20. Advancing along, there are several fun exercises related to addition and subtraction as well as tracing numbers.
As to be expected, Sesame Street characters are featured prominently with coloring pages, videos, and a range of puzzles. Elmo and his trusty side-kick, Abby Cadabby take kids on a magical journey through a world of math, enticing them at every corner.
Next up is an engineering inspired app for kids 6 and over. This app has been utilized with kids under 6, but because it was created to “inspire future engineers,” the material can be a bit challenging for many 4 or 5-year olds. GoldieBlox and the Movie Machine was created by a toy company obsessed with creating fun and inspiring toys for innovators. The creators were quite focused on inspiring girls which explains the feminine feel. Kids will pick up the basics of animation, how to animate, the mechanics behind animation, and then … animate! This is the cool part, where the kids are animating their own GIFs. An awesome addition for any kid 6 and older.
Educational Apps for Adolescents
We all know how math-adverse adolescents can be. Alongside science, it’s easily the subject that most of us fear to some respect growing up. Operation Math Code Squad uses math questions to take the user (player) through a maze of challenges. The reviews are in and it’s funny to read what kids think about the first couple levels – “these are some of the easiest questions I’ve ever seen!” But things quickly become a bit more challenging and the best thing about this app is an adolescent’s progress is tracked and recorded so Mom or Dad can double-check later.
We’re living in a highly technological world. Everyday items have become automated, and while this has made things easier to some extent, the greatest value added a young aduItcan make to whatever career they get into has to do with the things that tech can’t tackle – and that is communication.
Effective communication, part of an increasingly important set of soft skills, are vital in today’s world. MindSnacks is a vocabulary builder, taking users through clever games designed to strengthen vocabulary in several languages (up to five).
For kids that want to move on from their mother tongues, MindSnacks is a fantastic option as being fluent in more than one language is an added plus that will always be of value moving forward.
Educational Apps for High-School and College Students
Remember the days when the calculator watch was a novelty? If you’re over 40 you certainly do, as it was banned in nearly every school! Nowadays every cell phone is essentially a tiny computer, taking care of most of our needs. But not every need!
The Free Graphing Calculator is a scientific calculator that can also graph, all in one app. With the capability of graphing up to a whopping four equations at once, this app is an excellent companion for any advanced high-school or university student. Functionalities give the user the ability to engage in parametric equations as well as implicit functions. Users can also make tables from a value set which is highly statistical in nature. On the math and science side, the Free Graphing Calculator is truly invaluable.
This next one is going to blow your mind – Flashcards Deluxe. Imagine a digital manner to test yourself and study groups, like what we always used – paper flash cards. Paper they are no longer, as this app allows you to upload a spreadsheet, manually input data, and organize test information in the most tech savvy manner imaginable.
You can make folders, flash cards with up to five sides, and there are even video and photo functions. Another cool component is the ability to share these digital cards across users. Flashcards Deluxe puts an innovative spin on test-prep, something any high-school or college kid certainly needs!
The tip, tip, tip of the iceberg, but whatever category your child (or you) fall into here, check out these recommended apps. The benefits are extraordinary, and it will open your eyes into what’s new and available in this educational app world. Happy learning!