In previous posts, we have covered apps for storytelling, writing, math, and science. Now it is time to explore “free choice activity” apps to use in your classroom. Free time can get messy, but with these iPad apps, your kindergarteners can have fun while still keeping the classroom neat. Try some of these inexpensive apps, and see which ones your students like best.
Timmy’s Kindergarten Adventure (free) Although this is the preview version of the paid app, it has a lot of great content that will have your student feel like they are playing a video game all while learning basic skills such as math, sight words, spelling, telling time, counting, etc. If your students seem to really enjoy this version of the app, it might be a great idea to buy the full one for $1.99.
Teach Me Kindergarten ($1.99) Teach Me K is another great educational app for kindergarteners. The app walks students through different basic lessons while keeping them engaged and entertained. Features include a virtual aquarium reward with interactive fish and over 150 stickers as rewards to place on different scenes such as a farm, beach, city, pirate cove, reef, and playground.
Monkey Preschool Lunchbox ($1.99) Targeted audience for this app includes 2-5 year olds, but it’s enjoyable for all ages. It has six exciting educational games: colors, matching, counting, letters, puzzle, spot the difference, and shapes. With a rating of four stars in iTunes and 100+ reviews, you won’t want to miss out on this fun educational adventure.
Art Maker ($2.99) As a teacher, you want to make sure you are utilizing the right tools to engage the creative side of your students. Well, this app allows students to create their own masterpieces with the simple touch of a fingertip. Features include the ability to decorate scenes, animate pictures, and play with arts and crafts. This is a great mess-free solution to play time.
Toca Kitchen ($2.99) Do you have little chefs in your classroom? This is the app for them. Not only do children get to have fun in the kitchen at school, but they get to learn about measurements, how to utilize the right ingredients, and get to tap into their creative side.
Bugs and Bubbles ($2.99) Children are fascinated by bubbles! They are also intrigued by bugs, but may be too scared to interact with them. This app is the perfect place to explore these insects and have fun with bubbles at the same time. There are >18 games to play that include critical learning aspects such as balance, colors, counting, letters, patterns, pinching, shapes, and more.
Felt Board ($2.99) Felt Board is another great art app on our list for free time. To start, it has a rating of five stars on iTunes and winner of the Best Kids Toy app in 2012. Children can enjoy working with felt without having to worry about cleaning up. The app has a simple user interface, vibrant colors, and a wide range of characters and backgrounds to choose from.
Toca Tea Party ($2.99) This is the second Toca app on our list today. This time, instead of having a virtual kitchen, a child can host a virtual tea party without the hassle of lugging around the toys. Toca Tea Party got 4.5 stars on iTunes from teacher reviewers. This app is perfect for free time and will definitely keep your students entertained and occupied.
My PlayHome ($3.99) My PlayHome takes free time to the next level. It is the ultimate dollhouse in one. Children can explore their own dollhouse where their character can do all daily functions such as eat, sleep, shower, brush their teeth, play music, dim the lights, etc. This is a great app to use instead of buying an expensive dollhouse for the classroom.
Faces iMake ($3.99) Described as the “modern-day Mr. Potato Head” on iTunes, this app brings creativity and fun straight to your classroom. Your students can use their imagination to create any masterpiece they wish with the variety of tools this app provides. Bunches of trinkets, knick knacks, and everyday art tools are available to use. It is a great alternative to a messy art lesson.
These recommendations come from the presenters at the SDE conference, including:
- Mary Amoson, from Georgia (sharingkindergarten.com)
- Matt Gomez, from Texas (mattbgomez.com)
Check out other great apps recommendations on our Educational Apps page.