Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Preschool Activities - My Favorite Educational Apps & Websites

by Tiffany Rudd
As a mom and a teacher, I am not a huge fan of what I call “screen time” i.e. tv, movies, computer games, wii games, ipad games, smart phone games, etc... You get the idea. With so much technology all around us, sometimes it feels like my kids hop from one screen to the next. I try to limit screen time as much as possible. I’ve even been known to institute week-long bans on screen time when the weather is nice. Having said that, I do have to admit that screens can become a mom’s best friend. They have definitely saved me a time or two when dinner needed to be on the table and 2 or 3 little ones were running circles around my feet, or when I just needed a quite minute or two. And, in our house they work as an excellent reward/motivational tool. Of course, I always feel better when I allow screen time if it is also educational. With these fun iPad or iPhone apps and websites, the kids won’t even know you’re sneaking some learning in there. 
My Favorite Educational Apps - Preschool
1. Letter School ($2.99) - This is the most expensive app I’ve gotten for the kids, but it is a fantastic one for letter and number review and a great place to start with handwriting instruction. Brooklyn’s confidence in writing has grown like crazy since she started using this app.
2. Alphabet Zoo (Free) - This has been a surprise favorite in our house. You just click on each letter to hear the letter name, the phonemic sound, the animal that starts with that letter, and the sound the animal makes. Not much too it, but it has gotten a lot of use and I love the great review it provides.
3. Junior Bingo ($0.99) - This app creates bingo boards to help kids review colors, shapes, numbers, letters, and letter sounds. When you answer a question correctly you get a square and work toward bingo. Brooklyn’s favorite part are  the cute little “bingo bugs” you can earn when you don’t make mistakes. 
4. Shapes Toddler Preschool (Free) - This is another super basic app that has been a hit at our house. It is just meant to teach shapes through quizzing, flashcards, and a game section. I like that it teaches more difficult shapes like  “crescent” and “hexagon” and the kids love the “stickers” you  can earn for correct answers.
5. Monkey Preschool Lunchbox ($0.99) - This is a fun one with a bunch of different activities. It practices colors, counting, matching, beginning letters, and differences. This is  still one of Cameron’s favorites and I think one of the best  selling preschool games in the app store. Definitely worth the $0.99. 
My Favorite Educational Websites - Preschool
1. Starfall - This is a great website all about teaching kids to read. From abc’s and phonics to reading along. Plus, it’s one my kids ask to go back to again and again.  
2. PBSkids - With favorites like Word World, Sesame Street, and Super Why, your kids won’t even realize they are learning. 
3. Funschool - This site has a great preschool section with activities for learning abc’s, numbers, and colors. It also has a great selection of printable coloring pages. 
4. Sesame Street - If you have an Elmo fan in the house, this will be a favorite! There are fun videos and activities teaching great basics like seasons, shapes, and colors.
5. Literacy Center - This website is very basic, but a great one for reviewing both capital and lowercase letters, numbers and even basic keyboarding skills.

Click HERE to find my favorite educational apps and 
websites for Elementary age and older!
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  1. this is a good list! i'd love it if you linked it up to my tip-toe thru tuesday party tomorrow!

    andie @

  2. Great list! By the way, I’ve found a useful app for kids wherein you can know their behavior and also helping on their language skills. I, myself would recommend this Astroloquiz for youngsters and even for mommies who wants to spend their time with their children.

    You can check their website here -
    or get it here -

  3. I love your listing, this will help me in learnig and increasing my knowledge.


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