Try some of these great apps available to keep your little one busy while enjoying learning! Remember: allow only a certain amount of time for apps, perhaps 30 minutes, because as you know, kids can get hooked on apps and play for way too long…

BEDTIME MATH*– Multiply the value of your family’s nightly routine by adding bedtime math. Each day the app (or email) presents a new problem, with three levels of difficulty. You can also address and archive previous problems, sort by category, and bookmark favorites. (Ages 6 and up) FREE

THE FLYING ALPHABETINIS*– The Flying Alphabetinis is a twist on the classic letter jumble with a big-top theme. In two-minute games, kids can compete with one another (or with their parents and grandparents!) to find as many words as possible. The better your vocabulary, the more challenging the matches become. (Ages 6 and up) FREE

MORTON SUBOTNICK’S PITCH PAINTER**– Finger painting becomes music to tots’ ears with this “ingenious interface” that turns scribbles into the notes of 12 different instruments. (Ages 3 and up) $4

TOONTASTIC**– ‘Wascally wabbits’ can try cartooning, thanks to this tool that lets them pick characters (or design their own!), direct action, record dialogue and score scenes. (Ages 6 and up) FREE

NUMBERS LEAGUE**-This brainteaser introduces a villain with a name and a number- say, dad, 18. To defeat him, gamers must build a hero with numbered body parts whose sum is greater than the bad guys. (Ages 7 and up) $4

ALPHATOTS**– They’ll learn by doing! To master the letter A, little ones add A candle to a birthday cake. For X, they x-ray presents to see what’s inside! A friendly narrator sounds everything out. (Ages 3 and up) $3

LOVE TO COUNT BY PIRATE TRIO**– for preschoolers who would rather walk the plank than add, activities such as splitting a pizza into swashbuckler-size pieces and counting a stingray’s spots show how math helps in everyday life! (Ages 5 and up) $4

DRAGONBOX ALGEBRA**– Students solve for x with nary a number in sight. Instead, players are dealt two card-filled trays and challenged to isolate the glowing card (x). (Ages 8 and up) $6

FACES iMAKE**– Artists can click and drag photos of household objects (broccoli, buttons, chess pieces) to compose collages, add fun sound effects and catchy jingles, then share them in an online gallery. BONUS: NO CLEANUP! (Ages 5 and up) $5

BRITANNICA KIDS: SOLAR SYSTEM**– Got a starry-eyed child? She’ll love this “stunning” virtual encyclopedia about astronomy. Jigsaw puzzles, memory matchups and timed quizzes reinforce the material. (Ages 8 and up) $5

Reprinted from:

*Family Fun Magazine, Free Apps we Love, September 2013. p39.

**US Weekly Magazine, Best Guilt- Free Apps; August 19, 2013. p.80.