Ask the grumpies: Apps for 3-5 year olds

The frugal ecologist asks:

You did a toddler app post I think, but any other apps that your little one is into? Thinking for the 3-5 set….

Ooh, we need to know the answer to this question too.

We did like endless words, but boy was it an ipad memory hog.  I had to delete it eventually.  Starfall was another favorite, though we’ve just let it lapse since DC2 has really outgrown it.  ABCMouse seems pretty similar to Starfall– I don’t know if it is worth the cost, but we just got it free for the year with DC2’s kindergarten.  It’s fun, but too easy for DC2 right now– but it would have been good when DC2 was 3!

DC2 now spends a lot of time on the PBS Kids website on DC1’s computer on weekends after zie has done hir chores.  Zie wants to play games just like DC1 does.

Dragon Box has been pretty fun, both the algebra version and the geometry (elements) version, though DC2 hasn’t been able to complete them yet because the difficulty seems to hit frustration level after a while (but zie had fun during the first parts!).  We haven’t tried the numbers apps because they came out after DC2 had seemingly mastered numbers, but maybe it’s worth trying them anyway.  Update:  After typing this up we got Big Numbers and DC2 is hooked (some knowledge of addition and subtraction makes this game more fun).  (Right now, I admit I wish I were picking apples and gathering stones and turning fish into gold coins.)

A free one if you do it on the computer instead of an app is Teach your monster to read.   DC2 is also doing this one in school (even though zie knows how to read) and is enjoying it, but I must say after listening to hir play it this weekend, some poor princess keeps getting kidnapped over and over again and one would think would have better security by now.  Or maybe a weapon of her own or something.  They should mix it up and have the crown prince get kidnapped or something.  The narrator has a pleasant Britishy accent.  Update:  Level 2 does much better on gender–DC2 repeatedly feeds a female monster cookies and helps another find her lost words instead of rescuing a newly captured princess.  (Again, this is too easy for where DC2 is right now, but gee it would have been nice to have had a year or two ago!)

But yes, we really would like to have more suggestions on this one as DC2 has really outgrown most of what is on the ipad.  Extra points for stuff in Spanish!

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8 Responses to “Ask the grumpies: Apps for 3-5 year olds”

  1. Leah Says:

    Our three year old loves the Daniel Tiger family of apps. Whole variety of stuff to do, depending on the app. Lots of routine practicing.

    There’s another app that has them tracing letters and shapes that is also fun. I’ll look for the name when I’m not on my phone. Little one accidentally deleted the app. She has her own phone that she can use occasionally, but sometimes she ends up with mine. Either way, accidentally deleted apps happen regularly.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      Dc2 loves the one where you make them have tea.

    • Leah Says:

      The app is called Writing Wizard! All tracing, but our daughter loves it. Tracing a letter or shape is actually done with tiny shapes and not lines, and then the shapes move around once you’re done but snap back to the letter/shape if you pick your finger up. Hard to describe, but it’s fun.

  2. Calee Says:

    We love Epic books for kids— subscription app gets you 25,000 books and audiobooks plus a huge library of educational videos. Lots of toddler read to me books plus content goes all the way up to 12 years old.
    My son played a lot of Monument valley when he was 4/5.

  3. Leah Says:

    Have you tried the Reading Rainbow app? There’s a subscription and stuff, so we haven’t, but I am curious.

  4. Anonymath Says:

    In addition to the Endless..series and many of the DragonBox games, we have also enjoyed the Montessori games (intro to letters, intro to colors, etc.) and since he is currently on a Dr. Seuss kick, the Dr. Seuss books animated by Oceanhouse Media. They’re very true to original graphics of the books, but you can interact with the drawings on each page.


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