Free iPad apps that my 1st-grader uses and loves.

Anyone who knows me knows that I love technology and gadgets. One of the most important devices I’ve ever had has been an Ipad (after my phone of course). I cannot even count how many creative projects I have used it for, but my best use of it has been as a babysitter. I am not ashamed of the fact that my kids have been using their Ipads since they turned one. Both of them have learned so much from it that I’ve never regretted my decision.

Today I’m going to talk about the apps that I have loaded in my 1st grader’s Ipad. Every few months, I review the apps and change them according to her interests and level.

Khan Academy kids

We all know khan kids academy is a very useful resource for kids. They launched their khan kids app a few months ago and it is just lovely. We use it to study various topics.

 

Dotopedia

This is the Wikipedia for kids. Completely free and loaded with kid-friendly info!

 

Quran Qaida

Manaal learned all her Arabic letters using this app. Then we hired a tutor and stopped using it. Now that we are in quarantine, it has become a useful resource again. You can hear every letter being pronounced and repeat after it. It teaches kasrah, dammah, etc in advanced lessons. It is a free app but has ads in it.

 

Gus On the Go

 The Gus apps teach different languages in a kid-friendly way. The best part is that it also tests you with games. We use Gus Arabic, Spanish, French, and mandarin. Some are free and some are paid but worth every penny.

 

Scratch Jr

Scratch Junior is a very famous app for kids to learn to code. It has a simple interface and kids can soon figure out how to navigate it.

 

Inventioneers

We (and by we I mean me, Manaal and my husband!) spend a lot more time on this app than we should haha. It presents different scenarios where there is a problem that needs to be solved and you have to solve it using physics. Best thing ever! It’s completely free and teaches kids not only the basics of physics but also problem-solving.

 

The Cat in the Hat Builds that 

Something similar to Inventioneers but not just based on physics. If your kids are fans of Cat in the hat they will love it and it teaches them a lot of STEM concepts too. Win-win!

 

PBS play games

There are tons of games on this app. All are based on the different shows on Pbs kids and teach different concepts of science, math, social studies, etc without the kids ever knowing.

 

Kami 2

At first this might not look like a game for kids. I downloaded this game for myself until I saw my daughter helping me solve the puzzles. These are origami-based puzzles and can get pretty tricky. If your kid is interested then it is an amazing game for strengthening concentration, patience, and problem-solving skills.

 

Magnus trainer

A good app to learn chess if your kid is even remotely interested in it. The free app comes with limited lessons. There are in-app purchases according to your level and requirement.

 

The Foolish king

Another good app to learn and play chess. This one is completely free.

 

Go noodle

We use this app to get some exercise into our daily routine. There are dance, yoga, and meditation videos and it’s completely kid-friendly.

 

Noor kids

If you know about Noor kids then you know that it is such a valuable resource for mini Muslims. We use the app to watch the khutba’s (Islamic storytime). Noor kids has quickly become an essential in my parenting toolbox. I don’t know what I would do without it. Seriously!

 

Kids Dua now/ Dua

These are two apps geared towards kids and teaching them duas that are used daily. Like dua before sleeping, after waking up, etc. Both are free.


Free Subscription through school or library

Axis 360

See if your local library or child’s school offers access to this app. Axis 360 is made specifically for kids and the collection of children’s books is vast and diverse. I also use the app that my local library offers ebook checkouts through, although the kids’ book collection there is pretty small.

 

Brain pop Jr.

                    If you can get your hands on this app, it is just amazing. Not only does it have videos explaining various topics, but it also has easy and hard quizzes for each video to test comprehension and retention.

 

Code.org

Not an app, unfortunately, but we access it through the school portal and it is one of the most advanced websites to teach coding and app building to kids. I’ve bookmarked it in the iPad’s browser for easy access.

 

So here’s my round-up of our favorite apps on the iPad. Do you use any of these apps? Are there any apps that are your favorite, but didn’t make it to my list? I would love to know!

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