TinyTap – Enormous Potential.

Creativity and simplicity are core elements of this very successful app… that also happens to be free! For all the thousands of simple educational apps focusing on one or two core skills, this app has the potential to blow them all away, with apps created by your own child! I see huge potential for TinyTap, applications for it are unlimited. Kids can create their own games with ease and access hundreds more in the marketplace if they choose to play only.

Essentially the app works by uploading a picture or series of pictures from either your own photo library, the internet or a selection of pictures available within the app. Drawing, text and full creative control of the game pages are allowed. Once each page is complete, a series of audio questions can be recorded and areas of the page corresponding to the correct answer, traced. This afternoon my children created a collage of their school holiday outings and recorded questions for their little brother to use in his search for familiar items. Great sound effects and the personalised nature of the game ensured it was a hit, squeals of delight were heard not only while game playing but also in the creation phase

I am very excited about the future of this app, for classrooms and in homes, across a wide variety of users. I can’t wait to see where our tiny tappers will take us next.

TinyTap
Free

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Early Primary (ages 5-8) App Recommendations

A round up of some top educational Apps for this age group. Prices do fluctuate so check the App Store price before you buy.

Maths

Bugs and Numbers – $4.19 Eighteen multi-level games covering early maths concepts including patterns, addition & subtraction, time, currency and fractions. Adaptive progression avoids frustration.
Squeebles Addition and Subtraction – $1.59. For a full review of Squeebles apps, tap here
Squeebles Fractions – $2.59
Squeebles Maths Bingo – $1.59
Times Tables: Squeebles for iPad– $1.59
Division: Squeebles Times Tables Reversed – $1.59
123 Sheep! – Free
iCAN count money New Zealand – $2.59 An introduction to NZ currency.
Marble Math Junior – $4.19 Use the marble maze to solve Maths questions.
Quick Maths – $2.59 Handwrite answers.
Targeting Maths 1 – $12.99 by Blake Publishing, the same people responsible for Reading Eggs. Aligned to the Australian curriculum for year 1.
Targeting Maths 2 – $12.99
Targeting Maths 3 – $12.99
Maths Monkey Quest – $2.59
Monkey Preschool Lunchbox – $1.29
Playful Minds – Math (5-8 years old) – Free (for 12 months). The best free maths app available in my opinion!
Monkey Math School Sunshine – $2.59
Splash Math Apps – $13.99 full version. Graded levels.
Maths with Springbird HD Free. (plus in-app purchases)
Park Math (by Duck Duck Moose) – $5.29
Magic Matrix – $2.59 Introduces matrices and tables.
DragonBox – $8.29 Algebra by stealth. One of the best examples of learning embedded in game play. Also available in a 12yrs+ version.
Math Heroes 1 – $4.19
Math Vs Zombies – $1.29
Math Ahoy! – $1.29
Mystery Math Town – $4.19
Mystery Math Museum – $4.19

Reading / Writing / Spelling

Monkey Word School Adventure – $2.59
Squeebles Spelling Test, – $2.59 Customise your own spelling lists for multiple users, record your own voice. Fun reward game.
Eggy apps – various prices. By the Reading Eggs people.
Little Reader – Free. (plus in-app purchases)
Little Speller – Free. Learn to spell sight words.
Little Writer – Free. Customisable – e.g. you can enter in child’s name or favourite toy with a picture and learn to write it)
Simplex Spelling – lite version free. Phonics.
Rocket Speller – 5 Levels, 140 words.
School Writing – Learn to write and more – $6.49 Developed for Aust & NZ schools.
Writing Wizard – $1.25 Fully customisable, add your own words. Fun colours and animations. We use this one to practise spelling words.
Sky Fish Phonics – $4.19
Monster’s Socks – $4.19 An adorable eBook. For a full review, tap here.
Kids Crossword – $2.59

Combined Reading / Writing / Spelling / Maths

Teach Me: 1st Grade – $2.59 also available in Toddler, Kindergarten, Grade 2 & Grade 3. Answers can be written, these apps have quite good handwriting recognition.

Science and Social Sciences

iLearn Solar system HD – $4.19 Learn about the Solar system and interact with the Planets. Explore and quiz modes.
NZ Fauna – Free
Museum Victoria’s Field Guide to Fauna – Free
Barefoot World Atlas – Free. An interactive globe.
The Human Body – Currently free. An interactive guide to the skeletal, muscular, circulatory, nervous and digestive systems.

Early Programming

Daisy the Dinosaur – Free. The most basic of intro to programming apps.
Kodable – Free. Similar to Daisy.
Move the Turtle – $4.19. ,uuProgressive challenges introduce programming concepts.
Hopscotch – Free. Enables free creation of animations, games whatever you can imagine. Drag and drop, easy to get started.
TinyTap – Free. Amazingly easy to use and a clever idea. Kids can create games by uploading pictures or drawings, record audio questions and tracing areas of the pictures that correspond to the correct response.

Creative

Snowflake Station – $1.29
Princess Fairy Tale Maker – $5.29 (by Duck Duck Moose)
Toontastic – Free
ArtRage – $6.49
Hello Crayons and Hello Color Pencil – Free
Scribble Press – $5.29
Toca Builders – $4.19
LiquidSketch – $2.59 Puzzles and free drawing.
ColAR Mix – Free (one page only) $4.19 (full version). Print off colouring in pages then use your iPad / iPhone to make them 3d and animated.
TypeDrawing – $2.59 Draw pictures with lines of text.
Pic Collage – Free! Very easy to use photo collage creator. Clip, trace, resize, colour, borders, stickers and more.

Music

Jellybean Tunes – $4.19. Learn to read music
Piano Infinity – Free
Piano Free with Songs
Guitar Free with Songs

A bit more fun (but still found in the education section)

Toca Boca – $4.19 each. Currently about 18 apps. Some free versions available. Probably more pre-school but some like “Paint my Wings” and Toca Tailor” are still popular.
Dr. Panda apps – $2.59 each. Currently around 11 apps, some free versions available. Learn about various occupations and workplaces with fun games, including a mechanic’s workshop, a handyman, a restaurant, beautician and and an airport.
Little Fox Music Box – $4.49 Beautifully illustrated
Leo’s Pad – Free. 4 ‘Appisodes’ in one.
Dinorama – Currently Free. Create your own dinosaur theme park. Buy, name and feed your dinosaurs. Maintain and develop your park to attract visitors and maximise your income. Great for learning about finances and time management.

Toca Boca

Toca Boca apps are in my opinion worthy of the highest praise. They are undoubtedly the most played apps in our household of all time (although there is a new contender rising the ranks – Dr. Panda, my next post I promise) . Whilst I wouldn’t consider these the most educational, they are very engaging, promote creativity and many can be used by multiple players simultaneously – a big plus if you are a one tablet, multiple kid household.

This incredible range of 18 high quality apps includes a couple of lite or free apps. The developers refer to them as virtual or digital toys. If you think of your tablet as a seriously condensed form of your bookcase, Toca Boca is a toy box more portable than your kids!

Here are some of our family favourite Toca activities:

Feeding the monsters, painting beautiful symmetrical wings, creating crazy hair dos, designing clothes, hosting a tea party, running a grocery store and mixing up some groovy tunes with the Toca band.

$4.19 NZD each, except Toca Doctor Lite, Toca Kitchen Monsters, Toca Tailor Fairy Tales and Toca Hair Salon Christmas Gift all free on iOS.

Toca Hair Salon 2 is now also available on Google Play.

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