Sunday, 25 March 2012

Apps for Early Years & Key Stage 1

This selection of apps for children in Early Years & Key Stage 1 is by no means an exhausted and I'll try to keep the list up to date on a regular basis. I would welcome any other recommendations that I haven't included.

Toca Tea Party: £1.99

Toca Tea Party is a creative game for children aged 3 and above. Children can invite their friends to a tea party around your iPad. Set the table, choose their favourite cookies and cakes, serve the tea and they're good to go! Children can play together in a way that stimulates their imagination.

Sound Touch: £2.99

360 sounds and images of animals, birds, vehicles, musical-intruments and household. This app, aimed at young children relies on taps, making it easy for them to navigate between the images.

Toca Hair Salon: £1.49

Let your children run their own Toca hair Salon. Cut, colour, comb and blow-dry lifelike hair on six different characters. Using your fingers you can make any hair style you want. And you can take a snapshot and save your creation.

Slide and Spin: £0.69

Slide and Spin is designed for toddlers to help them develop their fine motor skills using four basic motions: turning, sliding, spinning, and pushing a button. Simply slide, spin or push one of the four buttons to reveal the hidden surprises.

Swapsies: £1.49

A mix and match game built around 10 occupations. Mix 'em up, or match to unlock the adventures that will have your children wrangling cattle and flying rockets.

ABC Expedition: FREE

A Alphabet ABC learning app for children. Children learn their ABCs and animals together. The app has large buttons, which are easy to navigate and alphabet pronunciation by adult and child voices.

Toca Store: £1.49

Toca Store allows children to set up their own shop as well as making decisions on what they might buy. Children will learn turn taking, cooperation, negotiation, basic mathematical skill as well as resource management.
Doodle Buddy: FREE

Doodle Buddy for iPad allows you to paint, draw, scribble and sketch. You can finger paint with thousands of colours and drop in playful stamps, with added sounds. There are lots of drawing tools, such as paintbrushes, glitter, chalk, text, stencils, smudge and more!

Sock Puppet: FREE

Sock puppet lets you create your own lip-synched videos. You can add Puppets, props, scenery, and backgrounds and start creating. Hit the record button and the puppets automatically lip-synch to your voice.

Bee-Bot: FREE

This Bee-bot App has been developed based on the award winning Bee-Bot floor robot. The app makes use of Bee-Bot's keypad functionality and enables children to improve their skills in directional language and programming through sequences of forwards, backwards, left, right and 90 degree turns.

3 Little Pigs: £3.99

This full animated, interacted version of The Three Little Pigs fairy tale is for children aged 3 and over. You can listen to the story or chose to read it yourself.

Cinderella: £5.49

Designed for children aged 3 and up, the Cinderella app lets you play inside the story. Beautiful illustrations, exciting animations and original music make this one of the best picture book apps.

Day of Diesels: £2.99

You can read, watch, listen and play with multi-touch animation, CGI video, paintings, puzzles and memory games.

My Story - Book Maker for Kids: £1.49

Great potential for this app! A really simple ebooks creator which combines tools for drawing, photography, voice recording, writing and sharing. Promotes literacy and creativity for children, ideally used in Key Stage 1. The child's book can then be shared within the app directly to ibooks.

KidArt: £0.69

KidArt allows children to draw, stamp and save their work for later. There is a large drawing space with 10 colours, fun stamps of animals and objects, over 20 backgrounds to draw on and three themes to chose from: Original, Under the Sea and at School.

Beebot Pyramid: £0.69

Control Bee-Bot through a series of 12 levels of an ancient Egyptian pyramid, unlocking doors, collecting treasure and out-smarting Mummies as you go.
A fun educational Numeracy game which encourages directional language, sequencing and problem solving. The Bee-Bot app teaches children how to direct and move their Bee-Bot character by giving it a set of sequential commands that they programme in, by pressing the keypad buttons.

Foundation Stage Record Keeping (EYFS)

A simple and fun way to log children's achievements against the EYFS profile. Every child has an individual portfolio of achievements. Take photos for evidence, then tag them with children's names and Foundation Stage targets.

Rover: FREE

Rover is a free education app and the only education browser for your iPad designed for teachers and students of all ages. Rover is targeted towards enhancing the education experience, bringing the best online learning content to your iPad- including access to content ordinarily available on the iPad (e.g. Flash content).

DK's Kids Crafts: £4.99

In keeping with DK’s unique designs, this app improves traditional activities by making them interactive and easy for children to do on their own. You can cross-stitch without having to worry about hurting yourself on a sewing needle, create colourful, digital, “furry felt” scenes (with themes that include the sea, deep space and the countryside) and give your very own “scrap bag” a smiley (or grumpy) face!

Pip and Posy Fun & Games: £0.69

Perfect for pre-schoolers. Use your finger as a paintbrush and colour in scenes from the books – then save the picture with an “Axel Scheffler” frame. Tap the screen to complete jigsaw puzzles of Pip and Posy. See if you can spot the subtle differences between pictures. Flip cards to find all the matching pairs in sets of 8, 16 and 24 cards and make faces in the mirror.

Loopy Tunes: £1.49

Build up tunes with looping samples, then add to them by playing along on milk bottles, piano keys or groups of additional samples.
Designed and created by parents. Directed, demanded and tested by children. Focussed on 2-7 year olds, users will delight in the control they have in creating complete tunes.

Shopkeeper + Maths: £0.69

Shopkeeper+ has been specially designed to add fun to maths. Using this App children will learn to count objects and add numbers, with questions as simple as ‘how many apples’ and as challenging as 10 + 10. The subtle staged approach which uses gold stars as a reward moves from counting objects, into adding a number to some objects before finally adding 2 numbers (between 0 and 10).!/id461513617?mt=8&uo=4

Amazing Coin: £1.49

7 interactive games about GBP coins learning, counting, paying, making change, matching and etc. 20 pence rewards for each correct answer, with the rewards kids can buy food in the store, and eat them later. Amazing Coin is a fun and educational game for kids to practice identifying and solving math problems with coins. It will teach your kids how to recognize, count, add, pay and make change with coins.

Pocket Phonics: £1.99

Aimed at kids aged between 3 and 6, and using the best ‘phonics’ teaching techniques, PocketPhonics introduces kids to each of the key letter sounds. As they learn the sounds, the app guides them how to write each letter through its unique follow-me arrow. This makes it easy to learn how to correctly form letters.

Little Fox Music Box: £1.99

A sing-along songbook with more than 100 interactive elements in 3 songs and the little fox music studio! Brought to you by the team that created the bestselling App “Nighty Night”! Great for kids between 2 and 6 years old.

Doodlecast for kids: £1.49

The Doodlecast For Kids App comes with more than 20 drawing prompts – simple questions designed to give kids a starting point. Kids can choose from one of the prompts or start a drawing from scratch. The app records the entire drawing process along with audio from the microphone to create videos up to three minutes long. The videos are as fun to watch as they are to create and Doodlecast makes it easy to share them with friends and families.

Singing Alphabet: £0.69

Each time a child presses a letter it will sing its phonetic sound. Your child can press as many letters as they want and the tune will always sound harmonious. Children can enjoy creating new songs with different combinations of letters or singing along with a single letter and practicing its sound!

Counting with the Very hungry Caterpillar: £1.99

The most-loved Caterpillar in the world is hungry…Very Hungry! Find and eat all of the Caterpillar’s favorite foods while you learn the fundamentals of numbers and counting, in this beautiful, interactive math game for kids aged two years and up.

Moo Baa La La La!: £2.49

JUST MOO IT! Sandra Boynton’s best-selling book of all time comes alive with sound and movement and gloriously unpredictable interactivity. The wryly inventive Moo, Baa, La La La! digital book app will intrigue and amuse little kids and big people alike, and perhaps even elicit an appreciative snort from the occasional uninvited rhinoceros.!-sandra-boynton/id431302275?mt=8&uo=4

Peppa Pig Me Books: £1.99

Read the charming Peppa stories. Listen to the story as read by the Peppa narrator. Create hotspots to record your own versions of the stories. Save your favourite versions to play again and again! The interactive Peppa Pig Me Books collection will keep you and your little piggies entertained for hours.

The Icky Mr Fox: £0.69

When Mr Rabbit and Mr Mole decided to have their afternoon tea, they couldn't have imagined that the Icky Mr Fox was plotting to ruin their day. Unfortunately for Icky Mr Fox, things don't always go as planned. To promote learning and reading in young children, the book is full of "tippy-tappy" objects which when tapped show the object's name as words and sound.

The Lorax - Dr Seuss: £1.49

New features only available in this omBook include professional narration, background audio and enlarged artwork for each scene. To promote reading in young children, individual words are highlighted as the story is read and words zoom up when pictures are touched. By combining the original text and artwork of Dr. Seuss with features that entertain and promote reading, this omBook appeals to readers of all ages.

Funimal Phonics: £0.69

The UK phonics in this app are synthetic phonics as endorsed by the UK government. Synthetic phonics break the sound of a letter into its smallest sound called a phoneme so an 'f' is pronounced 'fff'. This is regarded as the best way for a young child to learn how letters sound as it helps them to blend letters together correctly to create words. It will help prepare them for the teaching they'll receive in a pre-school class, reception and first years of primary school.

Little Digits: £0.69

Little Digits displays number characters by detecting how many fingers you put down. Children can learn to associate the number on the screen with the number of fingers they place down, whilst enjoying the unique characters and animations of the Little Digits world. There are also games that introduce small addition and subtraction calculations.

Numberlys: £3.99

Numberlys presents a fanciful depiction of the origins of the alphabet and is the newest interactive epic from Moonbot Studios, the creators of The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore. Numberlys is a story App celebration of the early fantasy epics King Kong, Metropolis and Flash Gordon with a dollop of the Marx Brothers, a splash of the Fleischer Studios technicolor Superman and a little bit of the 1939 New York World’s Fair.

Mr Phonics: Letters and Sound: £4.99

'Mr Phonics: Letters and Sounds' - The Youtube sensation Mr Thorne Does Phonics presents 'Mr Phonics' - a comprehensive collection of over 70 exclusive literacy videos for children, parents, teachers, student teachers and anyone learning to read English, using the synthetic phonics approach to learning to read.

Mr Phonics: Blends and Spellings: £4.99

'Mr Phonics: Blends and Spellings' - The Youtube sensation Mr Thorne Does Phonics presents 'Mr Phonics' - a comprehensive collection of over 70 exclusive literacy videos for children, parents, teachers, student teachers and anyone learning to read English, using the synthetic phonics approach to learning to read. Featuring: a b c d e f ff g h i j k ck l ll m n o p qu r s ss t u v w x y z ch sh th ng ai ee igh oa oo oi or ar er ur ow ear ure air

Mr Phonics: Matching Pairs: £1.99

Mr Phonics: Matching Pairs is educational and fun. 99 games of randomly assorted cards based on the order of teaching letters and sounds, beginning with s, a, t, p, i, n, m and so on, leading onto digraphs and trigraphs such as 'sh' and 'igh'. Finally the spellings become more challenging with games focussing on the /or/ sound in 'talk' and the 'sh' sound in 'ocean'.

Mr Phonics: Word Wall: £2.99

Mr Phonics: Word Wallpaper is educational, creative and fun. Over 93 wallpaper activities based on letters, sounds and words designed to encourage the user to draw, write and create. The player is required to think of words that feature a particular sound or spelling pattern and then decorate a wallpaper with their words. The app will help boost reading skills, spelling ability and fine motor control for writing. This app is ideal for use at home or in the classroom.

Let's Make a Rhyme: FREE

Let’s Make a Rhyme is an app for children and their parents that lets them change well known nursery rhymes. Children & parents alike can take pictures and use them to personalise characters or just draw on the characters themselves! You can even draw your own storybook cover.

Rhyme N Time: £1.49

Rhyme-N-Time is an educational app that focuses on, as you might guess, rhyming. Your child will have to find words that rhyme and words that do not in a fun format (checkout the screenshot for some examples). There is also a wonderful rhyming story that goes along with the game. You can keep track of how your child is doing on a stats screen we provide. It shows you how many questions were answered correctly on the first, second and third tries.

Free the Bee: £1.49

Free The Bee is an educational game to help your child spell 3, 4 and 5 letter words and have fun in the process. Your child will have to insert the first and last letter of the given word by dragging from a list of possible answers to the right slots to correctly spell the word.

Hairy Letters: £1.99

Interact with animations and trace the letter shape onscreen with your finger. Play games to reinforce learning and build letters into simple words. Letter sounds come to life with animated characters. Learn to form each letter shape with your finger. Play games to blend letter sounds into first words. Includes upper case letter names. Multisensory learning by UK specialist teachers.

TinyTap, Moments into Games: FREE

With TinyTap all it takes is a few taps to create fun educational games that will keep your children engaged for hours. TinyTap offers a learning experience unlike any other. Games are simple to create and can even be shared with friends.

Stories About Me: £3.99

Stories About Me allows parents and teachers to create their own social stories for their children and students.
Blending photos, text, and voice recordings into a talking picture book, children can playback rich media stories of their own personal experiences.

The Farm Animals - Which Animal Makes that Sound: FREE

Learning about different animals is fun and now easier than ever with Farm Animals. Not only will your kids get to meet an array of different animals including a horse, a duck and a dog but they’ll also be exposed to real animal sounds! It’s as good as a day at the farm.

Forest Phonics: 1.99

Forest Phonics is a spelling game. Choose a spelling pattern and you will be prompted to spell ten words using that spelling pattern, e.g. 'ay' words. The sounds are easy to move around using the drag and drop sound cards. Each correct answer is rewarded with a funny animation. The game covers 30 spelling patterns suitable for children between the ages of 4 and 7 years of age.

Elmer's Special Day: £2.49

To promote reading in young children, individual words are highlighted as the story is read and words zoom up when pictures are touched. By combining the original text and artwork of author David McKee with features that entertain and promote reading, this omBook appeals to readers of all ages.

Math Splat: £0.69

The aim of the game is to splat the answers to all the questions as fast as possible. Each game is timed and up to 3 incorrect answer per game are allowed however each incorrect answer will result in a 3 second penalty being added to the final time. Each level consists of a +, -, x and ÷ game. Once these have been completed the final game of the level is unlocked which must be completed for the next level to be unlocked.

abc Joined Up: £1.99

abc Joined Up makes learning cursive writing an enjoyable and fun experience. It helps children write cursive letters and words correctly and provides positive and supportive feedback by celebrating success. Alternative letter styles can be selected from the Settings Joined Up has three Levels: Beginner, Intermediate and Expert.

Drawing with Carl: £0.69

Enjoy many powerful and easy to use tools that helps you make great drawings.
Create your own set with Talking Carl and draw Talking Monsters!
Explore creative drawing with Mirror painting.
Easily share your drawings and vote for the best ones.

Figure: £0.69

Create an addictive beat before the next bus stop or lay down a beefy bass line while waiting in line at the bank. Figure will have you making music within seconds yet is deep enough for endless play on a transatlantic flight.

Puppet Workshop: FREE

Puppet Workshop was created to develop your child's creativity. Choose a sock or glove which will become a virtual puppet. Create the eyes, nose, mouth and hair using a variety of buttons, strands, ornaments, etc. Place the puppet on the background available in the app or upload your own background from camera roll on your iPad.

Jumbled Sentences 3: FREE

'Jumbled Sentences' series is designed for beginners to improve their writing skills. This app offers an easy and interactive way for beginners to learn the word order in a fun way. 'OK' button allows you to do self-checking on your own and get the correct answer without anyone's help.

Mystery Math Town: £1.99

Your mission: Help a friendly and curious little ghost rescue the fireflies that are hidden in Mystery Math Town. Players use math skills to unlock rooms and passages on their enchanting journey. Along the way, you can also earn talking portraits of the townspeople for your Gallery. Every picture has a story to tell and the colorful cast of characters in this town have plenty to say.


  1. Dave,
    I've found an app that's about my level on the music front, so it ought to be good for EYFS! It's called Loopy Tunes.

    1. Super, I'm sure my daughters will like this one. Added to the list. Thanks Paul!

  2. Nice blog.I agree with this..Keep it up..Thanks!!
    Best App Maker

  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  4. Very helpful - thank you

  5. Tidy post! I need to gain some research; where it states that these apps can assist learning especially in the foundation phase in particular to welsh language development (2nd language) for reception year 1 and 2? any suggestions please

  6. Educational apps is also a great tool for learning. The technology is vastly rising and the kids is also embracing what they saw and hear. So instead of depriving the kids from gadgets, let them have it but make it sure that it is properly used. That should be a techie educational tool.

  7. Please can you mark on each app description whether the app is British English or American? This would be really helpful as our son has special needs and American accents are confusing for him. We have wasted so much time downloading apps only to find they are only in American English. Thanks

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  9. Great blog. We love learning on the iPad. Check out Slate Math. It is free and in over 25 languages. It is favorite in our house.

  10. Hi there, this list is really helpful. My daughter has the three apps from hip hop hen and absolutely loves them and i can see her learning at the same time! you should try them out. The Pip and Posy app is so beautifully made and has really great activities as well.

  11. Thanks so much for this post! My little one has been learning so much playing with my iPad, it really is incredible to watch!