3 Apps about United States History and Government
Election season is upon us, and this may have your child asking questions about United States history or government.
Your child may be learning about the election in school or at home, and these apps would be a great complement to those learning experiences.
Geography Drive USA tests your child’s geography knowledge of all fifty states, with a few history questions thrown in. Kids travel the highways while answering questions to unlock airports and gas stations, which are essential to stay in the game. Bonus games allow them to visit the state fair to take the capital and state shape challenge and earn trophies and headlines. Overall, this is a fantastic app that encourages kids to study independently while incorporating a dynamic game to motivate and make learning meaningful.
Constitution by KIDS DISCOVER is an interactive digital magazine that delves into the creation of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. The magazine includes sections on The Father of the Constitution, To Ratify or Not to Ratify, and Making Changes to the Constitution. The magazine explains the creation of the Constitution in reference to the election of a president and a few tidbits about voting over the years. There are four interactive activities included in the app, which involve a Constitution fill-in-the-blank, a game matching the items in the Bill of Rights to their corresponding numbers, a jigsaw puzzle, and a quiz. Overall, the app does a nice job of providing information about the Constitution in a kid-friendly layout.
Stack the States uses motivating gameplay to help kids learn about geography and state facts. Questions are presented unvoiced, and you need to choose from 1 of 4 states to answer the question. When you answer correctly, you earn a state; in “tippy tower” style, the goal of each level is to stack the earned states up to a set line. The game play is motivating enough to keep kids (and adults) answering questions about location, national parks, capitals, and major cities. Children enjoy watching the backgrounds change with iconic pictures of our nation.
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Tags: civic, election, geography, government, history, united states
Best Apps for Learning About People
Kids love to learn about other children around the world, and one of the great advantages about the iPad is that you can easily access information from around the world to have at your child’s fingertips. Enjoy these apps that celebrate all types of people!
Learn About People with These Apps
Wee-You Things (iOS only)
Wee You-Things is a beautiful e-book app that shares an important message. “You-things” in the app are all those unique things about people. The message in the app is that we all have “you-things,” and that is what makes us special. Kids are greeted by over 20 unique characters to learn about each one’s “you-thing.” Interactivity on the page highlights, in some very funny ways, the character’s special quality. You are sure to hear some giggles when your children use this app. What we love about this e-book is that it opens up so many possibilities for conversations between adults and kids. You-Things is an excellent social learning app that is a must-have for your kids. Wee-You Things is appropriate for children ages 3-8 and costs $2.99.
Barefoot World Atlas (iOS only)
Barefoot World Atlas will completely mesmerize all members of your family. Open the app to a globe dotted with images that just beg to be tapped. Read and listen to fun facts by touching the images on the screen. Looking for more depth? Search by country and region to learn facts that give you a look into the lives of people and places around the world. The app is completely worth the price and will be appreciated by both adults and kids. Additional information packets such as World Art or Great Cities can be purchased for $0.99. We see this app becoming one the family sits on the couch and uses together. Barefoot World Atlas costs $4.99 and is appropriate for children ages 5-8.
One Globe Kids – children’s stories from around the world (iOS only)
One Globe Kids is an app designed to bring kids in other countries and cultures into your child’s world. The app allows children to learn about kids from around the world. KinderTown loves the pictures and voices of the children included in the app as they share different aspects of their everyday life. The app opens by allowing your child to personalize their experience by choosing their language and adding a photo of themselves. Then children can explore different cultures by spinning the globe and tapping hot spots that indicate a child is featured from that part of the world. Each child featured includes facts about that child’s native country, language, and even a tutorial on how to speak a few words in that language. Pictures of the child in their home country are included and show what a typical day in the life of the child might include. The app is appropriate for children ages 3-8 and provides an easy way for children to learn about other cultures without ever leaving home. One Globe Kids is completely kid safe with no advertisements or information being shared with others. There is a section where children from other countries can ask your child questions, and they can record their responses as if they were talking to that child, but the information is not shared outside of the app. The app is free and includes a profile of one child in Haiti. Additional content can be purchased for the price of $1.99 per country. One Globe Kids has an education version available as well called Globe Smart Education 1, which provides all of the content for one purchase price of $3.99.
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Tags: culture, ebook, geography, interactive, people
Top Global Apps for Kids
One of the greatest advantages of having an iPad for your child is the ability to reach around the globe and access different cultures. Check out these top apps to learn about other cultures.
Homes is the newest app from Tinybop, a developer focused on play and the natural curiosity of children. In this app, they have developed interactive homes across the world for kids to play in and discover new facts about other cultures. There are four different homes across the globe represented at the time of this review: United States, Guatemala, Yemen, and Mongolia. Once a location is chosen, a child can begin to explore the house. A sliding window bar allows you to peer inside the home. Tap on areas of the home to zoom in on the room. Once inside the individual rooms, children can play with the objects. For example, a room in a house in Yemen has a musical instrument to play with, tea cups and a pitcher to serve tea, and pillows on the floor to rearrange. The app begs kids to ask questions like “How do others live?” “What makes up a home?” The app can easily be changed to several different languages, encouraging children to listen to other languages and learn new words. KinderTown would like to see more information attached to some of the objects to further educate children (and parents). For example, a wash basin in Guatemala is used to wash clothing and prepare food. When talking with the creators, KinderTown learned about the extensive research that went into creating authenticity in the app. In addition, check out the Homes Handbook, which provides lots of facts and questions to ask your kids. The app is based on free exploration, so children can explore at their own pace and follow their interests as well. This app is a great way to learn about other cultures through the home environment which is familiar for young kids. The app is $3.99 and appropriate for children ages 3-8.
News-O-Matic is a news magazine for kids. This magazine contained within an app includes interactive activities and videos. News-O-Matic features 5 daily stories covering the United States and International news, sports, arts, science and more. The articles are written by their staff of journalists, including educational experts, and reviewed by psychologists to ensure age-appropriate content. The content of the articles is designed for young readers to understand. The app is also ad-free so the distractions are limited. News-O-Matic also features complete playback of the articles via a Read-to-Me function, making the information accessible to younger students and struggling readers. Definitions and pronunciations are provided for difficult words within articles. A few games are featured as they relate to the news of the day. The app also offers a Spanish translation. A special school edition exists for classroom settings or homeschool environments. KinderTown’s favorite feature that is only included in the school edition is the ability to change reading levels within the app from a 1st grade reading level up to a sixth grade reading level. In addition, the school version includes assessment questions for students. News-O-Matic is a very complete educational news magazine for kids and lots of features for educators and parents. News-O-Matic is appropriate for children ages 5-8.
Barefoot World Atlas
Barefoot World Atlas will completely mesmerize all members of your family. Open to a globe dotted with images that just beg to be tapped. Read and listen to fun facts by touching the images on the screen. Looking for more depth? Search by country and region to learn facts that give you a look into the lives of people and places around the world. It is completely worth the price and will be appreciated by both the adults and kids. We see this app becoming one that the family sits on the couch and uses together. The app is $4.99 and appropriate for children ages 5-8. A KinderTown personal favorite!
Tags: culture, curiosity, geography, magazine
Top 4 Childhood Adventure Apps
Does your child like adventures? All children seem to have a natural sense of curiosity instilled in them. These apps provide a sense of adventure through your iPad without leaving home. Enjoy an adventure with your child by downloading one of our favorite adventure apps.
One Globe Kids
One Globe Kids is an app designed to bring kids in other countries and cultures into your child’s world. The app allows children to learn about kids from around the world. KinderTown loves the pictures and voices of the children included in the app as they share different aspects of their everyday life. The app opens by allowing your child to personalize their experience by choosing their language and adding a photo of themselves. Then children can explore different cultures by spinning the globe and tapping hot spots that indicate a child is featured from that part of the world. Each child featured includes facts about that child’s native country, language and even a tutorial on speaking a few words in that language. Pictures of the child in their home country are included and show what a typical day in the life of the child might include. The app is appropriate for children ages 3-8 and provides an easy way for children to learn about other cultures without ever leaving home. One Globe Kids is completely kid safe with no advertisements, or information being shared with others. There is a section where children from other countries ask your child questions and they can record their responses as if they were talking to that child, but the information is not shared outside of the app. The app is free, and includes a profile of one child in Haiti. The rest of the content can be purchased as in-app purchases. One Globe Kids has an education version available as well called Globe Smart Education which provides all of the content for one purchase price.
Monkey Preschool Explorers
The Monkeys provide an all new entertaining app with exploration as the center theme. The Monkey PreSchool Explorers app provides a mixed review of early childhood concepts such as colors, numbers, shapes, letters and association skills. One game includes Milo the Monkey driving a jeep through the jungle and children have to tap on the lower case and upper case letter indicated. At the end, there is a fun race game for children to complete and they are rewarded with a choice of a hat for Milo the Monkey. The developers of Monkey PreSchool have a “Thups Knack” system which changes the difficulty of the game as your child plays. This app is a simple one for children to navigate and includes interesting graphics. The app is 2.99 and appropriate for children ages 3-5.
Come have an adventure with all the circus entertainers! Shiny Circus teaches young children beginning concepts about measurement and relationships between objects. Shiny Circus has two different options for engaging with the app; Story Mode and Game Mode. In Story Mode, the children read a story and interact with the characters along the way and participate in learning games. In game mode, children choose which game they would like to play. The app features 4 games that work on early childhood math concepts such as biggest and smallest, near and far, shortest and tallest, and balancing objects. After answering questions correctly children can collect stickers of the characters for their sticker book. Shiny Circus is appropriate for children ages 3-5 and is $2.99.
NASA Earth as Art
KinderTown loves this unique app as your children can explore pictures of the world as seen from space for free! Made by NASA, the app encourages children to see the art in the images. The app does not read aloud to children, so parents you may want to read aloud some of the captions. This app would be an excellent addition to a study on geography or inspiration for art. NASA Earth as Art also includes technical information that can grow with your child as they get older and learn about different parts of the world. The app also includes time lapse pictures that show how different parts of the earth have changed over time. Thank you NASA for sharing your work and allowing children to explore the earth from a unique perspective.
Tags: adventure, association, colors, culture, curiosity, geography, language arts, letters, math, numbers, preschool, science, Shapes, space