A few weeks ago, we asked you for your favorite parenting apps. The results are in and here are the top apps you chose that offer ways to get moving, get educated and have fun!
Super Stretch Yoga for Kids gives families an opportunity for exercise -- no matter where they are! A combination of animated characters and real kids, you can learn 12 different yoga poses that cater to all skill levels and ages.
"It's amazing how quickly my pre-school & toddler granddaughters learned to enjoy "Namaste" time in the afternoon & my daughter loves how just a few minutes can inject some calm into what is normally a "grumpy" time of day for everyone. Even "Grandma" can do (most) of the positions-lol. The "repeat" button is great as they learn the positions and, if done one at a time, they can set their own pace." --MemaDeb
Do you have a budding astronaut on your hands? The Skyview app tells you what's going on in the universe and how to see the planets, stars and satellites in your own backyard. Never fear missing a sighting: a countdown is available to let you know when the object will be in your field of view.
"I was star gazing shortly after sunset and I noticed an object that was very bright and moving fast. While I wondered what the object was, I opened the Skyview app. I was surprised when I pointed my phone at the object and realized I was looking at the International Space Station. I was amazed that this app showed the object on the screen also tracking it in real time!!! Highly Recommended!" --Worm56
Kids 12 and under can instantly access Epic!'s library of over 15,000 books for only $4.99/month. You can create up to four reader profiles, which will provide specific recommendations based on the child's interest and reading level. The app also offers a progress tracker with a reward system to motivate kids to keep reading, as well as hundreds of audio books for those who can't yet read. As an added bonus, there are no ads or in-app purchases offered with Epic!.
"The EPIC app is great for beginning readers, advanced readers, or children who are not yet reading independently. As a teacher, I can use the EPIC with students on any level. I believe one of the best features is the “Read To Me” function. Many of EPIC’s books are available with the feature that reads the book to you, which is great for students who are in the beginning stages of identifying words. The app is very engaging. It has many different genres and even includes “Popular Collections” where you can read several books on the same topic, for example “Community Helpers.” There is a search function that lets you set preference to show books appropriate for different ages, you can pick the type of book (picture book, chapter book, etc.), and any interest categories. The app includes familiar authors and titles such as The Berenstain Bears, and Angry Birds. The “Create A Quiz” function allows an adult or student to add a quiz question to the book and can be shared with the EPIC community. Using online books makes learning fun and interactive, AND there are videos in case your child needs even more encouragement to read!" --Katie B.
Let your kids choose their own tunes from their devices with the Spotify app. The Kids Channel lets parents access playlists that their kids may enjoy. Older kids can follow their friends and share playlists and favorite songs.
Tweekaboo was founded by a dad who wanted to find a way to organize the most precious moments of his kids' lives in the digital age. Users can record and privately share any special family moment, from pregnancy and beyond. You can even print scrapbooks created within the app -- easier than hauling out the baby book! The app allows users to import images and video from Facebook, Instagram and Dropbox.
"I looked through a dozen apps but many had extensive functions for tracking feeding, naps and diaper changes which I don't need... I was looking for an easy way to track and share my daughter's 'firsts' and memories and Tweekaboo is exactly what I was looking for! Easy upload of photos or videos and ability to add notes and sorting by category or multiple children. And I like that it's private except for those I choose to share it with (like her out-of-town grandparents :) which saves time on multiple communications to everyone. Visually everything looks great and helps me keep a record of info I would otherwise forget. And although I've never used it yet, I love that I could turn this into a book if I wanted. Before I found this, I was thinking about what an ideal app would have for what I wanted and Tweekaboo has everything.... So happy to have found this!" --AmberM74
Every parent is familiar with the great variety of Disney apps -- from games to shows, for toddlers to tweens. Disney even makes an app for visiting their theme park. Users can plan and share vacation details and access wait times for rides and times for shows, parades and character greetings. The app also lets you utilize a GPS-enabled map to find food and fun nearest to your current location.
"I basically LOVED this! I used to have to print/write down ADR confirmation numbers/ and my husband was constantly running around with our park passes to get fast passes at the various machines. This is so much better - had the day planned out and changing fast pass times was very easy with my resident teenager. Also was able to get a last minute Chef Mickey reservation while we were waiting on the runway for the gate to open in Orlando! Very cool - we hadn't been able to get a reservation earlier, so someone must have cancelled. Love the wait times as well. This made the whole vacation so much more organized!" --Heintd
Winner of the 2015 BolognaRagazzi Digital Award and the 2016 Kidscreen Award, My Very Hungry Caterpillar lets kids take care of their very own (digital) friend! Preschoolers start by hatching the caterpillar from an egg, feeding him and tucking him into bed. Nurture the caterpillar as it embarks on its journey to become a beautiful butterfly.
"I cannot say enough how much we love this app!!! Plenty of fun things to do. The little world changes a tiny bit for each new "day" for the caterpillar so that's good. My 2 1/2 year old has played it regularly for months & I love it too. It's very cute!!" --PlumToothPaste