Best Apps for Kids Ages 4-5

Since I started this site, I’ve had many questions from other parents about the best iPad apps for their kids. It happens so frequently, I decided to compile a list of recommended iPad apps for one-year-olds, two-year-olds, and three-year-olds.

Now, I am back with a new list for kids ages 4-5. Taking hints from our yearly Best Apps for Kids list, I organized this list based on each app’s use case.

BEST MONTESSORI MATH APP: Montessori 1st Operations introduces kids to basic math operations

BEST MONTESSORI MATH APP: Montessori 1st Operations introduces kids to basic math operations

Best Early Math App (tie): Dragonbox Numbers

dragonboxnumbers.png

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 Early Math App (tie): Eggy Subtract to 20

eggysubtract20.png

This app builds basic math skills through six interactive games that focus solely on subtraction. Kids have fun playing a memory game, completing a 3×3 subtraction grid, and snowboarding to solve equations. It is available in US, British, and Australian English. If you want an app that focuses on addition, check out Eggy Add to 20.

Link for Eggy Subtract to 20: App Store | Our Review
Link for Eggy Add to 20: App Store

Best Montessori Math App: Montessori 1st Operations

montessori1st.png

A fun and comprehensive activity app based on the Montessori principles. Kids learn the concepts of addition, subtraction, odd/even numbers, and halves/doubles by playing games in three levels of learning. The app supports multiple user profiles and is available in 11 languages.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn 2D Shapes using Tangram: Shape Arts: Geometry Creations

shapearts.png

Shape Arts helps kids learn about 2D shapes, spatial reasoning by solving and creating tangram puzzles. They can also share their puzzles with other Shape Artists or play puzzles made by others.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn about Measurements: Shiny Circus

shinycircus.png

A circus-themed app in which kids learn about different types of measurements: length, height, width, area, distance, and mass. They also hone counting skills as they compare, sort, and match objects. There’s also a social aspect to the app as the story teaches kids about sharing with others.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST CURSIVE WRITING APP: Intro to Cursive also lets juniors learn about English phonics and phonograms.

BEST CURSIVE WRITING APP: Intro to Cursive also lets juniors learn about English phonics and phonograms.

Best Cursive Writing App: Intro to Cursive

introtocursive.png

While cursive writing has been abandoned by some, it is still essential for a complete lesson in handwriting. This app makes learning cursive writing accessible to younger juniors. It uses D’Nealian style, which makes it easy to differentiate between the number 1, the lowercase l, and the uppercase L.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Phonics/Sight Words App (tie): Eggy Phonics 3

eggyphonics3.png

An app for practicing phonics, word building, reading, and word rhyming. It focuses on 100 words that are hard to spell such as earth, frown, sport, knight, and scratch. The words are organized into 20 levels, and kids learn each word through six mini games that involve reading and tracing.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Phonics/Sight Words App (tie): Word Teller for Kids

wordteller.png

A comprehensive app that introduces kids to the alphabet, simple words, and rhymes. It covers 44 sounds in the English language in details, and includes 96 words with their corresponding pronunciations. Kids also learn to identify rhyme families, consonants, digraphs, short/long vowels, r-controlled vowels, trigraphs, and uncommon blends/digraphs.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Spelling App: Trilo Spelling

trilospelling.png

An educational and adventurous phonics based spelling game for kids grades K-2. In the app, kids follow the friendly ghost Spooka, the one-eyed mummy Sling, and the funny zombie Frank through multiple spelling levels. With rich visuals and great gameplay, the app provides hours of fun.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Word Building App: Word Wizard

wordteller.png

Word Wizard lets kids build their own words and provide instant feedback by pronouncing the word as it is built. It also checks the words against a built-in spell checker and dictionary. The app supports words in Dutch, English, French, German, Spanish, and Swedish.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST BEDTIME STORYBOOK: I Love You All The Time is about parents’ unconditional love for their children.

BEST BEDTIME STORYBOOK: I Love You All The Time is about parents’ unconditional love for their children.

Best Bedtime Storybook: I Love You All the Time

iloveyou.png

An endearing storybook that highlights the bond between parent and child. It conveys a deep message through simple verses and rhymes. There’s also a fun feature for listening the story as a song.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Original Storybook: Have You Heard?

haveyouheard.png

A funny tale about a grapevine of mix-ups, presented in colorful graphics and narrated by comedian Rhys Darby. The story is chockfull of wordplay and homophones to entertain young readers. It also includes a fun game that tests their memory and concentration.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Fantasy Storybook: Fox Tales

foxtales.png

An interactive book-app with the features of an adventure game. It features an exciting plot, beautiful hand-drawn artwork, and handy features such as narration and text highlighting for developing readers. It is available in five languages: English, Polish, Russian, Spanish, and Chinese.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST NON-FICTIONAL STORYBOOK: The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Friends storybook has a mini encyclopaedia for other topics too

BEST NON-FICTIONAL STORYBOOK: The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Friends storybook has a mini encyclopaedia for other topics too

Best Interactive Storybook: Caillou: Show and Tell

cailloushowtell.png

A storybook that encourages parents to read to their kids and start meaningful discussions. Throughout the story, parents can pick up tips for better storytelling. The app offers an interesting mode called Read and Talk, which foster language development in kids. Available in English and French.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Non-Fictional Storybook: The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Friends

veryhungrycaterpillar.png

An interactive mini encyclopedia that covers natural facts, such as how silk is harvested. It also includes a handful of mini games to keep kids entertained. Available in English, French, German, Spanish, and Japanese.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Storybook to Learn New Cultures: Grandma's Great Gourd

grandmagourd.png

Grandma's Great Gourd combines a charming Bengali folktale, minis game, and short videos on South Asian culture. The story presents a positive message about staying level-headed in the face of danger and resourcefulness. With great production value and educational benefits, it's a great addition to any child's digital bookshelf.

Link: App Store | Our Review

BEST ROLE-PLAYING APP: Toca Hospital lets kids explore and play in a virtual hospital

BEST ROLE-PLAYING APP: Toca Hospital lets kids explore and play in a virtual hospital

Best App to Encourage Healthy Eating: Veggie Bottoms

veggiebottoms.png

A silly storybook that turns fruits and veggies into anthropomorphic characters with unique personalities. Kids learn what various fruit or vegetable look like, and spin them to reveal their "bottoms". It's available as free download with optional in-app purchase, which will be donated to Fruits and Veggies More Matters initiative.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Musical App: Music Superheroes

musicsuperheroes.png

A fun app in which kids learn music concept and skills. It includes five mini games that cover topics such as tempo, rhythm, notes, instruments, and music production. Kids can also record their voice to create unique sounds.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Toy App: Pango Playground

pangoplayground.png

An open-ended app that encourages kids to explore. It features four scenes with colorful wood blocks and animal-shaped pieces that hide interactive surprises. Fun for all ages.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Role-Playing App: Toca Hospital

tocahospital.png

Toca Life: Hospital lets kids explore and create their own stories in a virtual hospital. The app has a diverse cast of characters and tons of details that allow kids to come up with all kinds of scenarios. A record feature makes it easy for kids to make their own videos and share them with family and friends.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Coloring App: Damki Town

damkitown.png

In Damki Town, kids can express their creative sides by painting funny animal characters. Each character has a name and a set of stickers that reflects his/her unique personality. Kids can save their finished artworks, send the colored pics to their friends, or share them on Facebook with their parents' permission.

Link: App Store | Our Review and Playing Tips

BEST APP TO LEARN ABOUT MONEY: Money Up! helps kids identify, count, and use money in real life

BEST APP TO LEARN ABOUT MONEY: Money Up! helps kids identify, count, and use money in real life

Best App to Learn Mandarin Chinese: Kids Learn Mandarin

kidslearnmandarin.png

A handy app in which kids learn 240 everyday words. It includes plenty of mini games and a hands-on calligraphy section. Though it's aimed towards kids, adults can also take advantage of the app to learn basic Mandarin Chinese.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn about Money: Money Up!

moneyup.png

A comprehensive and accessible app that introduces kids to coins and bills using the Next Dollar Up technique. Through seven different games, kids learn how to identify, count, and use money in a transaction. The app supports the following currencies: Australian dollar, Canadian dollar, U.S. dollar, British Pound, Euro, New Zealand dollar, Singaporean dollar. It's available in English and Spanish.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Learn about Physics: Max & Ruby Science

maxruby.png

In this app, kids learn about the properties of liquid and the motion of objects through 50+ puzzles with varying difficulty levels. It supports up to three user profiles. Available as a free download with one-time in-app purchase to unlock the full game.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best App to Create Your Paper Crafts: Foldify

foldify.png

In this app, kids can create their own personalized 3D figures by coloring the 2D flattened template and folding it on screen. They can also browse through what others have created in the online community, and print out their favorite designs.

Link: App Store | Our Review and Usage Tips

BEST SCIENCE APP: Bobo Explores Light teaches kids about all sorts of interesting things about light

BEST SCIENCE APP: Bobo Explores Light teaches kids about all sorts of interesting things about light

Best Timer App: Tico Timer

ticotimer.png

This visual timer helps kids gain a sense of time. You set the timer and watch animations alongside a soothing background music. You can tap and hold to see the clock tick down, and teach your kids that a minute is equal to 60 seconds.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Science App (tie): Bobo Explores Light

boboexploreslight.png

The definitive resource for learning all about light. It covers topics from the solar system to lightsabers. Kids can watch educational videos, read articles, interact with 3D holograms, and participate in hands-on experiments. With over 100 pages of content, this app will entertain and educate for a long time.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Science App (tie): Toca Lab: Plants

tocalabplants.png

A playful way to introduce young kids to botany. This open-ended experience encourages kids to observe, experiment, and take notes to grow quirky plant characters. No reading is required to play, so everyone can join in on the fun.

Link: App Store | Our Review

best construction game: Hoopa City 2 lets kids build the city of their dreams

best construction game: Hoopa City 2 lets kids build the city of their dreams

Best Contraption Game: Pettson’s Inventions Deluxe

pettsonsdlx.png

The ultimate app for fans of contraption puzzles. It includes 50+ puzzles to solve, multitouch support for a split-screen versus mode, and a cooperative play mode. Fun for the whole family.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Platform Game: Thinkrolls: Kings & Queens

thinkrolls.png

Thinkrolls: Kings & Queens is a physics-based platform game where you roll characters across various obstacles. It offers 200+ puzzles with increasing difficulty, characters to dress up, and fun surprises to discover. Because there is no time limit, kids can take their time to solve each puzzle and develop their logic and problem solving skills.

Link: App Store | Our Review

Best Construction Game: Hoopa City 2

hoopacity2.png

Hoopa City 2 lets kids build the city of their dreams by combining items to create over 60 unique buildings. They can also zoom in to peek into their buildings and interact with their citizens. There's a puzzle element to the gameplay as kids try to discover various combinations, but the overall experience is lighthearted and pressure-free.

Link: App Store | Our Review

 

Check out our other best app guides here. You can also receive daily educational app reviews by following us on Twitter or liking us on Facebook.