5 Best iPad Apps for Children

Among the hundreds of thousands of apps available for the iPad are a few gems your child will find fun, challenging, and educational. The five listed below—each of which can be enjoyed for free with the option to purchase the full version or additional features—are worthy of being tested by every parent of a young child.

1. Where’s My Water?

Swampy the Alligator, living deep below the city, is all set to take a shower but the water pipe is broken. Your child’s task is to deliver water into Swampy’s bathtub by digging through the dirt, turning on other pipes, and even using the odd explosive. This Disney Mobile app can teach your child problem solving skills while providing hours of enjoyment.


2. Harold and the Purple Crayon.

Inspired by the classic book and the HBO Family animated series, this app allows your child to follow Harold as he and his crayon take a journey under the moonlit sky. The story involves interactive chapters and discoveries to be made at every turn. To help your child follow along with the narrator, words are lit up as they are being read. Plus, the tone of the app makes it the perfect way for your child to wind down at the end of the day. The “Lite” version enables you to get a taste, but for the full experience you’ll need to purchase the full version.


3. MathBoard.

Unlike many math-education apps, this one allows you to customize the questions for your child’s level, including setting the number range, opting for multiple choice, and identifying multiple students. The free version is limited to addition only, but the full version incorporates subtraction, multiplication, division, cubes, squares, and square roots.


4. Alphabet Car.

With this motion sensitive app, your son or daughter can take control of the vehicle by tilting the iPad to the left or right, picking up the necessary letters to spell words along the way. As your child progresses through the lessons, the challenges become greater and greater. A free version is available, but the full version includes additional features and vehicle options.


5. Cars 2 AppMATes.

Based on the popular Disney/Pixar movie, this app is designed for use with a specially designed toy car (available from selected retailers). By placing the car on the screen, you can maneuver Lightning MacQueen (or one of five other characters from Cars and Cars 2) through the sleepy little town of Radiator Springs, accomplishing challenges along the way. If your child does not possess an AppMATes car, the app can still be used—free of charge—with an onscreen “paper” car. Additional features and options are available through the in-app digital store.

Granted, these five apps are only a sampling of the quality apps available. With new apps being added to the App Store every day, you and your child have a seemingly endless resource of options to try out.

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