Wow, what a year this past month has been. Am I right?

I’ve seen so many parents thrown into the woes of educating their children this month and holy schmoly it’s not for the faint of heart. While I am not currently teaching. I am now and will always be an educator at heart. I am by NO MEANS PERFECT. I yell at my kids. I am short tempered. I let them watch wayyy too much tv when I need to get things done. But despite that, I am really intentional.

I have always been a HUGE advocate, of making iPads and iPhones TOOLS for kids, rather than just forms of entertainment. Having said that, I am sharing some of the best educational apps for kids that we have used, and are still using, and the ones I wholeheartedly recommend.

best educational apps for preschoolers

When my kids were toddlers, people would watch with open mouths as they navigated Apple products like 6 year olds. It would probably be sad, if I wasn’t so strict about what things they had access too. I know a lot more apps have come into the learning space since then, but I’m sharing some of the best ones we used.

In general I try to avoid apps with In-App purchases, because I think it preys on kids to try and get them to buy things within a game. A few of these apps are subscription oriented, but mostly I chose the apps that are a one time fee. If you want quality apps, you will have to pay for them. If you want free apps, expect for them ask you for money via In-App purchases. There are very few high quality apps that are free, the Fisher Price apps I linked below are a great exception for kids aged 4 and under.

  • Sago Mini Bug Builder ($3.99) – this is a great family of apps. They have no In-App purchases, and are open worlds for kids to explore. I recommend all of their apps, but the one I linked was always a favorite for my kids, and one they will still play at 6 and 8, if I need to engage them for a few minutes out and about.

Some of these apps like the Endless App collection were a lot cheaper when I purchased them a few years back, but especially if you have multiple children, I would say they are a worthwhile investment. These are all apps we’ve used for years without In-App purchases.

best educational apps for elementary kids

  • Epic ($7.99 a month, if you normally buy one book a month, it’s worth it)
    Epic is amazing, it requires a monthly subscription or you pay a year upfront. I have both paid monthly for this, and purchased a year up front. However, currently tons of school are giving logins to their students for free. It has thousands of books, audio books, and more. The non-school version also curates safe videos (Youtube Kids style, but without all the random surprise eggs filling kids’ minds with crap) Totally worth the investment to have access to so many engaging books.
  • Stack the States ($2.99)
    A super fun geography focused game that is really addicting to play.
  • Think Rolls ($3.99)
    A logic and problem solving game that’s actually fun for kids
  • Tynker and Tynker Jr. (Free + Monthly or In-app purchases)
    A basic app that teaches kids to code. This is a great life skill for iGen, and this one is easy to use, but it’s also a monthly fee. Your kids would have to regularly do it, for it to be worth it, but you can actually do cool stuff like make Minecraft Mods if you get good enough.
  • Monster Math ($6.99)
    A fun and engaging way to do month through a game. This app is kind of buggy and also has a subscription program that they try to get you to join. But even without it, you can still do math facts and logic puzzles.

I could share more, but this list is becoming a book, so I’ll stop. I love sharing about keeping kid’s technology safe, using Screentime features, and more. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, drop a comment below or send me a DM on Instagram. Happy Learning!

Apps for toddlers too

Many moons ago, I actually made a list of my favorite apps for toddlers. So, if your kiddos are really little, then check that out at the link above.