60 Best Apps for Kids 2015

If we were to sum up in 2015 in a word, it would be innovative. This year we saw developers push the boundaries of what an app can contribute to a child’s education and development. What you see here are fine examples of the most inventive, illuminating, and engaging children’s apps you can find on the App Store — they’re our Top 60 Apps for Kids 2015.

BEST ALPHABET APP FOR TWO-YEAR-OLDS: Metamorphabet delights players with organic animations

BEST ALPHABET APP FOR TWO-YEAR-OLDS: Metamorphabet delights players with organic animations

Best Apps for One-Year-Olds

Best Coloring App: Kapu Bloom Tunes

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A cute toy that lets kids paint and grow musical flowers. Parents can use the app to introduce kids to the musical scale and the concept of symmetry. Simple and easy to use, it is suitable for preschool-aged kids.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Apps for Two-Year-Olds

Best Alphabet App: Metamorphabet

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A truly fantastic app for all ages, Metamorphabet delights players with its tactile user interface and beautiful, organic animations. A diverse vocabulary coupled with surreal imagery inspire a sense of wonder and encourage creative thinking. If you are planning to get only one alphabet app for your child, make it this one.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Vocabulary App: Zooper ABC Animals

A humorous alphabet app that contains many interactive elements. Among others, kids can watch silly animations, learn rhymes, trace letters, and play guessing games. The open-ended gameplay allows plenty of fun.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn about Shapes: Shape Gurus

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Shape Gurus teaches kids to match, sort, and classify shapes and colors. It offers a series of geometric puzzles that come together to tell a story, and get progressively difficult over time. Simple yet brimming with interactions, this beautiful app will delight and entertain young kids.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST ROLE-PLAYING APP FOR TWO-YEAR-OLDS: Sago Mini Superhero packs a lot of fun for tots

BEST ROLE-PLAYING APP FOR TWO-YEAR-OLDS: Sago Mini Superhero packs a lot of fun for tots

Best Role-Playing App (tie): Sago Mini Toolbox

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Sago Mini Toolbox is a great role-playing app for kids who love to build, tinker, and fix things around them. It has many tools and construction projects to choose from. It also exposes kids to a variety of materials from wood to cloth.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Role-Playing App (tie): Sago Mini Superhero

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You don’t need x-ray vision to see how much fun is packed in Sago Mini Superhero. This vibrant app allows kids to channel their curiosity and discover what being a superhero is all about. With 30 playful animations to discover, it’s sure to delight young kids anywhere.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Musical App: Duckie Deck Homemade Orchestra

Duckie Deck Homemade Orchestra is a fun app that encourages kids to be creative. By showing that various instruments can be made using with everyday things, it invites you to think out of the box and tinker. There is a lot of opportunity to extend the activities off-screen, which we really like.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST APP TO LEARN ABOUT SHAPES FOR THREE-YEAR-OLDS: Lipa Pirates makes learning fun

BEST APP TO LEARN ABOUT SHAPES FOR THREE-YEAR-OLDS: Lipa Pirates makes learning fun

Best Apps for Three-Year-Olds

Best Papercraft App: Labo Paper Plate

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Labo Paper Plate features 12 simple craft projects that you can easily replicate at home. It shows that with a little creativity, even ordinary objects like the paper plate can become interesting toys. In addition to making crafts, the app allows children to play with their creation in fun mini games.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Early Math App: Numbie

Numbie helps kids build math skills, including numbers, counting, geometry, patterns and sequences, and more. It’s worthwhile because it offers a year’s worth of math in a single app. It’s also engaging and easy to use.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Counting App: Up to 100

Up to 100 helps kids discover numbers up to 100 through 6 fun activities. Older kids can learn numbers in foreign languages, including French, German, Italian, and Spanish. The app is inspired by Montessori pedagogy and approaches.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn about Shapes: Lipa Pirates

An exciting pirate adventure in which kids hunt for treasures and learn about shapes. They’ll use their wit to manipulate objects to build ships, move shapes to fight the Kraken, and stack blocks to create bridges. A fun storyline keeps kids engaged from start to finish.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST GAME TO PRACTICE SPATIAL REASONING FOR THREE-YEAR-OLDS: Peg + Cat - The Tree Problem gets kids solving puzzles set in fun worlds

BEST GAME TO PRACTICE SPATIAL REASONING FOR THREE-YEAR-OLDS: Peg + Cat - The Tree Problem gets kids solving puzzles set in fun worlds

Best Game to Practice Spatial Reasoning: Peg + Cat: The Tree Problem

Based on PBS Kids’s show Peg + Cat, this cute app offers a series of games designed to help kids develop problem solving skills and learn early math skills. With 50 unique levels and 10 fun worlds, kids will have a fun time learning without even realizing it.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Sight Word App: The Sight Word Adventure

The Sight Word Adventure is a fun-filled game where kids can learn 320 sight words spread across five levels from Pre-K to Grade 3. The games can be customized to your child’s learning level, and there’s a parental dashboard to monitor the child’s progress.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Remember Names: Name Play

Name Play promotes early reading and writing through a child’s name. It offers 8 fun activities with many customizable components; among others, you can use the app to help kids remember their friends’ names. Also available for Apple Watch.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn a New Language: Pacca Alpaca - Basic language learning and educational games for children

Pacca Alpaca offers educational mini games that help kids learn about numbers, colors, and shapes in various languages. It has an intuitive gameplay that requires no instructions. This beautiful app can also be used to teach kids about Australia.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST ROLE-PLAYING APP FOR THREE-YEAR-OLDS: Toca Life: School lets kids explore everyday scenes and come up with their own stories

BEST ROLE-PLAYING APP FOR THREE-YEAR-OLDS: Toca Life: School lets kids explore everyday scenes and come up with their own stories

Best Storybook to Help Kids Overcome Fear of Shadows: My Naughty Shadow

This beautiful storybook alleviates the fear of shadows by turning a shadow into a silly, playful character. Kids will have fun interacting with the illustrations while listening to the spooky narration and background music.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best YouTube App: YouTube Kids

A great way for kids to enjoy YouTube contents that are suitable for their age. Even though Google curates the channels, you can still find other contents through keyword-based search and the Recommended section. If you’re looking for a good way to have parental controls over YouTube contents, this is a suitable app.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Role-Playing App: Toca Life: School

School is cool in this interactive world filled with everyday fun. As kids explore five different locations, they can interact with hidden surprises and a wide variety of characters. They can also use the in-app recording feature to record and share their story.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST EARLY MATH APP FOR FOUR-YEAR-OLDS: Zap Zap Math offers mini games for kids to practice their math skills

BEST EARLY MATH APP FOR FOUR-YEAR-OLDS: Zap Zap Math offers mini games for kids to practice their math skills

Best Apps for Four-Year-Olds

Best App to Encourage Healthy Eating: This Is My Food - Nutrition for Kids

A comprehensive and fun resource for kids to learn all about food and nutrition. This interactive app is loaded with fun facts, animated diagrams, and mini games that engage kids and even grown-ups. A special feature is a journal for keeping track of your own real-life herb garden.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn About Genetics: DNA Play

In DNA Play, kids learn how genes work by creating silly monsters. By tweaking the monster’s gene order, they can give it certain physical traits such as a furry torso or short legs. Delightful animations bring the monsters to life and make this app engaging for young children.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Early Math App (tie): Zap Zap Math

A collection of well-designed games to help kids practice their math skills. The games are organized into topics based on the Common Core Standards, and cover topics from number value to geometry. Each game has 5 difficulty levels to cater to different age groups.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Early Math App (tie): DragonBox Numbers

DragonBox Numbers teaches kids what numbers are, how they work, and what you can do with them. In the app, numbers are turned into colorful characters that can be manipulated to solve puzzles. With 350 challenges to complete, this app is an extensive resource for learning math.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST INTERACTIVE STORYBOOK FOR FOUR-YEAR-OLDS: Goldilocks and Little Bear allows readers to switch between two different perspectives of the same story

BEST INTERACTIVE STORYBOOK FOR FOUR-YEAR-OLDS: Goldilocks and Little Bear allows readers to switch between two different perspectives of the same story

Best Odd One Out Game: Fiete Choice

A unique game that explores the concept of finding the odd one out of a series of pictures. With a great sense of humor and 99 diverse levels, the app offers a thorough playing and learning experience.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Musical App: LOOPIMAL

A seriously fun app where kids can explore sequences, loops, and music. The clever sound design ensures that every sequence will sound harmonious, and the simple interface makes it easy to use. There are no rights or wrongs in the app, so kids can experiment and play to their hearts’ content.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Interactive Storybook: Goldilocks and Little Bear

Goldilocks and Little Bear puts a literal spin on a classic by allowing readers to flip their device to switch between Goldilocks’s and Little Bear’s story. As they read along, they can interact with the characters in their beautiful, 2D world. Engaging narration add a dash of charm to this interactive fairytale.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST APP TO LEARN ABOUT TIME FOR FOUR-YEAR-OLDS: Telling Time with the Smurfs is a comprehensive app that offers analog clock lessons

BEST APP TO LEARN ABOUT TIME FOR FOUR-YEAR-OLDS: Telling Time with the Smurfs is a comprehensive app that offers analog clock lessons

Best Musical Storybook: Peter and the Wolf in Hollywood

Peter and the Wolf in Hollywood is a musical tale adapted from a composition written by Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev in 1936. Set in modern-day Los Angeles, the interactive book takes readers on a thrilling adventure. If you’re looking for a way to introduce musical storytelling to your kids, you should definitely give this one a try.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn About Time: Telling Time with the Smurfs

Telling Time with the Smurfs offers analog clock lessons to help kids learn how to tell the time. It uses the Smurfs characters and a contextual storyline, making it easier for kids to relate the story to their own routines.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Resources for Educational Videos and DIY Projects: WonderBox

WonderBox presents a safe way for families to explore fascinating topics and complete creatives challenges using easy-to-use design tools. It includes thousands of educational videos curated by educators, and built-in private messaging so families and friends can share their creations with each other.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST CROSSWORD PUZZLE GAME FOR FIVE-YEAR-OLDS: Bonza National Geographic is a fun puzzle game for kids and science enthusiasts

BEST CROSSWORD PUZZLE GAME FOR FIVE-YEAR-OLDS: Bonza National Geographic is a fun puzzle game for kids and science enthusiasts

Best Apps for Five-Year-Olds

Best Arithmetic Game: Odd Squad: Blob Chase

Odd Squad: Blob Chase is a fun math game in which kids can practice their early arithmetic skills. It offers 60 levels of challenging problem solving involving addition, subtraction, doubling and halving. If your kids enjoy puzzle platformer games, they’re going to love Odd Squad: Blob Chase.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Crossword Puzzle Game: Bonza National Geographic

The sequel to the famed Bonza Word Puzzle, but designed with kids and science enthusiats in mind. It features new picture hints and jigsaw puzzles featuring stunning photographs from National Geographic, making it more appealing to younger audience.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn About Syllables: Nok Syllables

Nok Syllables helps kids with early reading. It offers a set of activities that teach kids to identify syllables and build new words from them. Each activity consists of three levels of progressive difficulty and prizes, with positive reinforcement upon correctly completing each one.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Introduce Kids to Opera: Let’s Go to the Opera

Opera is an art form that may not be accessible to many kids around the world. Let’s Go to the Opera is a great way to take your kids to see and learn from a virtual opera. It lets you to learn about the theater architecture and the different roles that make an opera possible. It’s a great app — both for family and classroom settings.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST INTERACTIVE STORYBOOK FOR FOUR-YEAR-OLDS: David Wiesner's Spot presents interactive worlds-within-worlds unlike no other

BEST INTERACTIVE STORYBOOK FOR FOUR-YEAR-OLDS: David Wiesner's Spot presents interactive worlds-within-worlds unlike no other

Best Platform Game: Thinkrolls 2

Thinkrolls 2 is the sequel to an excellent physics-based platform game released last year. It keeps the same game mechanics, but introduces several new items and characters to keep the gameplay fresh. With 200+ levels, this is a fun game that will keep young minds challenged.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Puzzle Game: Crazy Gears

A fascinating puzzle game where kids must use reasoning and problem-solving skills to manipulate colorful gears, chains, rods, and pulleys. As kids play through 60 increasingly complex levels, they will learn how different mechanisms affect one another in simple machines. It’s a fun way to get kids interested in STEM topics, especially mechanical systems.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Interactive Storybook: David Wiesner’s Spot

A unique app that allows you to make active choices to create your own stories. You pinch to zoom to navigate within and across five different worlds, which creates a unique and immersive storytelling experience unlike that of a typical storybook. If your kids are open to stories with non-linear plots, this app will stir up imagination and hone their storytelling skills.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Audiobook: Storm & Skye

A great audiobook for kids who love magical adventure fictions. It offers an immersive listening experience supplemented by stunning illustrations and light animations. The story also has great morals, such as facing your fear.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST APP TO TEACH FIRST AID TO SIX-YEAR-OLDS: RED CROSS presents common accident scenarios and tips on how to deal with them

BEST APP TO TEACH FIRST AID TO SIX-YEAR-OLDS: RED CROSS presents common accident scenarios and tips on how to deal with them

Best Apps for Six-Year-Olds

Best App to Teach Kids First Aid, Safety Procedure, and Accident Prevention: RED CROSS

A great interactive app about first aid and accident prevention. It shows 11 common accidents that might happen at home, at school, or on the road, and how to react to them. You can personalize the app with your country’s emergency number, which allows it to be relevant to kids anywhere.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Original Storybook: Billy’s Booger

Billy’s Booger is an unconventional tale about an imaginative boy, a heroic snot, and learning to be yourself. Illustrated by award-winning writer/filmmaker William Joyce, this terrific book-app shows that with proper support and guidance, a child can go far with his imagination.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Interactive Storybook: The Amazing Quest

A clever interactive adventure that promotes reading comprehension. Using logic and observation, players must solve puzzles to drive the story forward. The app includes five alternate stories, each set in a unique environment, for variety.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST SIGHT WORDS GAME FOR SIX-YEAR-OLDS: Mystery Word Town has kids learning to spell to save a Wild West town

BEST SIGHT WORDS GAME FOR SIX-YEAR-OLDS: Mystery Word Town has kids learning to spell to save a Wild West town

Best Non-Fiction Storybook: Ocean Forests

Ocean Forests blends an engaging, non-fiction storybook with open-ended exploration and educational mini games to create an unforgettable learning experience. This stunning app introduces kids to a kelp forest and its unique inhabitants. Excellent reading options cater to various reading skills, and set the app apart.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Arithmetic Game: Land of Venn - Numeric Storms

A tower defense game that aims to help players recall addition math facts and ultimately, stop finger counting. It is fast-paced and requires a lot of planning, but older kids will find it a more exciting alternative to worksheets. Features include 30 kooky levels and epic boss fights, up to three player profiles, and app-wide English narration.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Sight Words Game: Mystery Word Town

A fun word game that has kids learning to spell as they wrangle outlaws. Designed to support classroom learning, the game has great replay value because you get new words and letters every time you play. Other features include multiple user accounts, custom word lists, and fun trivia.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST WORLD BUILDING GAME FOR SIX-YEAR-OLDS: Toca Blocks lets kids build huge, interactive worlds from colorful blocks

BEST WORLD BUILDING GAME FOR SIX-YEAR-OLDS: Toca Blocks lets kids build huge, interactive worlds from colorful blocks

Best Robot Building Game: The Robot Factory

Imagination runs free as kids build their dream bots in this beautiful robot factory. They can mix and match 50+ unique parts to experiment with different designs, then see if their construction holds up in the treacherous test arena. The app supports multiple profiles, so more than one child can play on the same device.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best World Building Game: Toca Blocks

Toca Blocks is a fun app that lets kids build magical worlds from colorful blocks. Similar to crafting in Minecraft, blocks can be combined to create new, interesting types. The blocks can then be used to create interactive worlds — just like in Super Mario Maker. If your kids love building games, Toca Blocks is a must-have.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Learning Tool for Creating Diagrams: Memio

Memio is designed to help you memorize diagrams. Using the provided tools, you can conceal labels on diagrams quickly and easily. Its ability to transform diagrams into interactive study tools can benefit anyone from first graders to medical school students.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST POEM APP FOR SEVEN-YEAR-OLDS: Wit-Fit has kids completing funny rhymes and short poems

BEST POEM APP FOR SEVEN-YEAR-OLDS: Wit-Fit has kids completing funny rhymes and short poems

Best Apps for Seven-Year Olds

Best Poem App: Wit-Fit

Wit-Fit is a fun app for learning about rhyming words and short poems in English. Each poem is like a puzzle waiting to be solved. Using the illustrations as hints, kids learn how to associate words to complete a sentence while keeping everything in context. It truly is a fun little app for everyone in the family to enjoy clever rhymes and witty poems.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best History Game: Age of Explorers

A fun app that tells the story behind 5 famous European explorers. Kids will help these explorers manage their ships, all the while learning about the challenges they face. It features fast-paced games that require kids to have quick reaction and great hand-eye coordination.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Astronomy App: Professor Astro Cat’s Solar System

A quirky, interactive app that lets kids explore the solar system. It includes many educational facts presented as easy-to-remember diagrams or interactive content. If your kids love astronomy, they’d love facts-heavy apps like Professor Astro Cat’s Solar System.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST PHYSICS APP FOR SEVEN-YEAR-OLDS: Simple Machines provides an interactive sandbox where kids can learnhow simple machines work

BEST PHYSICS APP FOR SEVEN-YEAR-OLDS: Simple Machines provides an interactive sandbox where kids can learnhow simple machines work

Best Physics App: Simple Machines by Tinybop

Simple Machines is an interactive, sandbox-style app where you explore six simple machines and discover how they work behind the scenes. What makes the app so engaging is the little rewards you get by experimenting with different things, thus encouraging kids to explore more. If your kids are excited about STEM, this app will be right up in their alley.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn Programming: Robot School

Through 45 levels of puzzles, Robot School teaches kids how to use programming elements, such as loops, conditional loops, and conditionals. It’s great because kids are trained to code efficiently from the start, and it has a gentle learning curve that makes learning fun for all ages.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Improve Brain Power: Brainventures

Brainventures is a game based on the growth mindset. This engaging app offers numerous activities for improving basic skills, as well as valuable insight about the learning process. Friendly characters and an engaging narrative help make the app a joy to use.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Apps for Eight-Year-Olds

BEST MATH GAME FOR EIGHT-YEAR-OLDS: Motion Math: Cupcake challenges kids to use math to solve real world problems

BEST MATH GAME FOR EIGHT-YEAR-OLDS: Motion Math: Cupcake challenges kids to use math to solve real world problems

Best Fantasy Novel Series: Weirdwood Manor

Weirdwood Manor is an original book-app series that will stir the reader’s imagination. Combining elements of magic and fantasy with interactivity, these beautifully illustrated books encourage readers to discover fun puzzles and fascinating artifacts. All in all, this is an interesting series with great production value that you wouldn’t want to miss out.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Earth Science App: The Earth by Tinybop

The Earth provides an interactive model for kids to experiment with the geological forces that shape our planet. Among others, they can trigger earthquakes and rockslides, make volcanoes erupt, and see how the Earth has transformed over time. All in all, it’s an excellent and educational app.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Math Game: Motion Math: Cupcake

A great business simulation game in which kids learn to use math to solve real world problems. Some of the word problems can be tricky as they require multiple steps of calculation, and involve mixed numbers and proportions. When you factor in the coordinate system, this game can be quite challenging even for adults.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST LOGIC GAME FOR AGES 9-11: Zoombinis requires kids to make logical deductions and solve puzzles to save the zoombinis

BEST LOGIC GAME FOR AGES 9-11: Zoombinis requires kids to make logical deductions and solve puzzles to save the zoombinis

Best Apps for Ages 9-11

Best Logic Game: Zoombinis

Zoombinis is a fantastic game that promotes problem solving skills in the players. It offers 12 tricky puzzles, each with 4 increasing difficulty levels, that require players to approach problems systematically and make logical deductions based on the clues they find. The engaging narrative and adorable characters make the game fun for kids and adults alike.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Engineering App: The Everything Machine

The Everything Machine lets you access the hardware and sensors on your device so you can create machines that do anything you can think of. This sophisticated app encourages creative thinking, and introduces kids to programming and circuitry. It’s a child-friendly app, yet at the same time complex enough for grown-ups to enjoy.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Storybook for Overcoming Fear of Shadow: The Bedsby Tales

The Bedsby Tales offers short scary stories that help kids understand and overcome their fears of the darkness. It offers an interactive mode where kids can decide what they’d do when faced with the scary situations in the story. It also includes a simple puzzle game, allowing them to be more adventurous and involved in the story.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST SCIENCE APP FOR AGES 9-11: Meet Science: force and Motion rouses interest in physics through fun facts, interesting experiments, and pop quizzes

BEST SCIENCE APP FOR AGES 9-11: Meet Science: force and Motion rouses interest in physics through fun facts, interesting experiments, and pop quizzes

Best Original Storybook: Hilda Bewildered

Hilda Bewildered is a fascinating interactive short story that explores various personal and social issues. Eloquent narration and vivid illustrations call for thoughtful discussions, while an immersive soundtrack evokes a melancholic mood. A great read for deep-thinking readers.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Math Game: SMART Adventures Mission Math 2: Peril at the Pyramid

A game designed to foster math skills through story-based puzzles. In the app, kids can learn and practice a number of topics including order of operations, prime and composite numbers, geometry, statistics, and probability. Three levels of difficulty present kids with continuous challenges that can supplement their math lessons at school.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Science App: Meet Science: Force and Motion

Meet Science: Force and Motion explains real-world phenomena and thought-provoking experiments through science. It includes live-action videos of experiments, pop quizzes, and lots of fun facts. But where it excels at is cultivating kids’ curiosity in science, which for us, is more valuable than simply teaching kids about things.

Link: App Store | Our Review

 

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