Pokémon has recently taken the world back by storm with the release of their new app, Pokémon Go. Our house has been swept up in the excitement seeing as The Mister and I both grew up in the original Pokémon generation. I was in second grade when the original Pokémon games for Gameboy were released with the trading cards following close behind so imagine how neat it is that our oldest is experiencing this at close to the same age. We love it! We also love knowing that our kids’ screen time is educational though which is why we try to keep a good balance.
Whether you love it or hate it – or don’t know what it is – Pokémon Go is one of the most popular apps in the world right now. Here are some alternatives created intentionally to foster learning, making them a truly worthwhile time investment. For fun, and since Pokemon’s from Japan, I’ll count the 4 apps in Japanese – Ichi, Ni, San, Go!
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Ichi (One): Have story time anywhere with the FarFaria App
I like this app because kids can read quietly and be entertained wherever they are. It also gives the entire family access to thousands of books on an iPad, kindle, phone, etc, so there are options for all ages! Turn screen time into story time with this “Netflix for Children’s Books” app. It’s great to be able to save books to the app so they can be read offline anywhere! For example, in a home office, at the park, in the car, and of course at bedtime.
Great for: Ages 2-9
Ni (Two): Improve reading skills with the Hooked on Phonics App
Love Hooked on Phonics at much as I do?
They’ve really brought this time-honored system to the 21st century with this amazing app. It has educational games to keep kids engaged at home or on the phone anywhere. I love that it syncs children’s progress to all devices – so if dad is on the road he’s up to speed on the kids’ progress, and if you don’t have the iPad around, you can just download the app, sign in, and have the kids pick up right where they left off. Seamless.
Great for: Ages 2-8
San (Three): Learn coding skills with the browser-based Learn to Mod program
Great for Ages 7-13, girls too!
Go! (Four): Need help with homework help? Use the GradeSlam app and ask a tutor!
Does your high-schooler need help in a particular subject? Are you strapped for time to help with homework? There’s an app for that! GradeSlam provides 24/7 tutoring in all subjects to students in middle and high school, as well as college. With their award winning chat-based tutoring platform, your kids can access tutors anytime they (or you) need. This is a perfect supplement for subject matter beyond your scope, busy spells, and for when kids head off to college. For anyone gearing up their juniors for college entrance testing, this is a no – brainer.
Great for: upper school to college ages, tougher subjects
I hope I’ve expanded your digital horizons beyond Pokémon today! What apps do you and your family use? Comment below and share the knowledge!