Choosing Children’s Apps For Summer Holidays
School is out for the summer, and many families are preparing to go on holiday or even just looking for ways to entertain their children at home. Whilst, as ever, we’re not trying to encourage you towards the use of apps over other forms of play, we recognise that many children will be using apps and believe that they do have a place as part of a balanced play diet.
At Fundamentally Children we aim to support parents in choosing the best apps for their children. There are so many apps out there it’s really hard to know where to start. Here are our tips on how to find the best apps to entertain your child over the summer holidays:
- It is really important to find apps for your child that are appropriate for their age. Our experts have tested lots of apps with children to find the most suitable age, based on both ability and enjoyment. Of course, children’s abilities and interests vary widely, but this offers a good starting point to choose something appropriate. Browse the list of apps we’ve approved for each age here:
- It’s always good to think about what the next things are that your child is learning to master, and choose apps that can help with their development, whether there is a new subject that has sparked their interest or they are starting to learn a new skill. Below are links to our approved apps that cover the main skill development areas – you can also use the filters to find the area you are interested helping your child develop. We recommend giving your child access to a range of apps that support development across all of the different skill areas:
- We always encourage reading in children, particularly using physical books with parents. Books have such a huge impact on a child’s development from learning basic phonics through to learning spelling and developing vocabulary. However, if room in your suitcase is limited then downloading ebooks or interactive book apps is a great alternative and can help inspire a life-time love of reading in your child.
- The change of scene and new experiences often particularly inspire creative play in children. There are many great creative apps to support this that cover art and design, photography, music, imaginative play, role play, etc.
- If you’re going abroad this summer we see it as a great opportunity to encourage children to think about geography, history, cultures, religions, languages, currencies related to the places they go as well as about transport and local cuisine! There are apps out there that help develop understanding of the world in many of these areas and beyond.
- Whatever apps you are considering we strongly recommend you look at independent, expert reviews (and there’s no better place than our Good App Guide of course!) before you download. These can really help you to determine whether they are appropriate for your child.
- Be willing to pay for good apps. We know that many people avoid paying for apps wherever possible, and given that so many are free that’s not surprising. However, with a few notable exceptions, the best apps generally have some charge – even if only 69p! Compared to getting access to the same quality of content offline, apps are remarkably inexpensive. If you’ve checked reviews and know the app is good, or if you’ve tried the free ‘lite’ version and liked it, don’t be put off by a small price tag.
- Finally, we know that many people use their tablets for video, particularly when travelling. Don’t forget that streamed services (e.g. BBC iPlayer) don’t work abroad. Several services (including BBC iPlayer) have download options, although again they typically only last a limited time (e.g. 30 days if you don’t watch it or 7 days from when you first press play).
Please do also make sure that your children don’t miss out on all the excitement of the holiday because they’re buried in technology. Activities like family games to while away long car journeys and simply doing nothing are really valuable. However, for those moments where an app is the right answer for you, we hope this gives your child the chance to get the most out of their screen time.Tags: Children's Apps
This post was written by Fundamentally Children