Top 24 educational apps could boost kids' schooling

2013-12-09 07:36
Apps have emerged as a driver of smartphone adoption. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

Apps have emerged as a driver of smartphone adoption. (Duncan Alfreds, News24) (Duncan Alfreds)

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Cape Town - While most people use their tablets for entertainment, educational apps are a great way to enhance learning on the smart devices.

Mobile technology has shown that it can easily accommodate education applications, and often, in a way that is more engaging than traditional methods.

Kirsty Chadwick of the Training Room Online shared some of her top 24 educational apps.

"It [technology] provides us with the tools we need to simplify our lives, and education is no exception," Chadwick told News24.

Here are her top 24 education apps:

1.    Vocabla
Vocabla is an iOS app for improving your English vocabulary – I think this could be particularly beneficial for the "me" generation.

2.    Mathboard
Mathboard is an app that is jam-packed with math quizzes for kids. It will keep them busy for hours on end.

3.    Star Walk
This app is incredible. All you do is point your iPad toward the sky at night, and you will discover many interesting things about the stars in real-time. This app is also packed with useful information and could be particularly beneficial to an astronomy student.

4.    The Elements
We all had to deal with the periodic table at school, well this app actually makes it exciting by giving you visual images of the elements and so much more.

5.    History: Maps of World
This app actually allows you to access high definition apps from any period throughout time and the world.

6.    Visual Anatomy
This is a 3D anatomy app which is loaded with high resolution images detailing the human body.

7.    Wellwrite
Writewell is a spelling quiz game. You can play on your own or you can play in a group to test your knowledge. New levels are unlocked as you achieve the required results.

8.    Sounds: The Pronunciation App
This app is great for anyone who interacts with others. The app features a fully-interactive Phonemic Chart for both British and American English.

9.    Coders
This program allows you to delve into the world of computer programming on the comfort of your very own iPad. Whether you are just starting out or whether you are a professional, this app will provide you with a lot of valuable information.

10.    Storyboard Composer
Storyboard Composer is a mobile story-boarding application which can be useful to art directors, film students and the like.

11.    Essay Writing Guide
This app is a must-have for anyone who is completing any form of written work. Writing is arranged around content, style and organisation - with some interesting results.

12.    AS Level Computing
This app is great for anyone who wishes to learn about computing. Information is easy to read and will be of great use to ICT students.

13.    WolframAlpha
This app is difficult to explain to someone who hasn't used it. Basically the app gives you access to expert knowledge of an array of subjects at the moment when you need it.

14.    History Books
If you are a history buff or have a serious interest in anything historical, then this app is for you. It allows you access to an almost unlimited amount of historical books that will keep you busy for months.

15.    Grammar App
This app is a simple way to learn and test your English grammar. Including more than 200 tutorials, as well as over 1000 exercises to complete, this app will have you on top of your game in no time.

For younger children, there are also a wide variety of applications to introduce education. Here are some apps for younger kids that parents might want to download.

"I also enjoy some of the apps that are available for younger kids and believe that they could be greatly beneficial to the younger generation," said Chadwick.

16.    Keyboard Fun
The great thing about this app is that it was actually created by an occupational therapist in order to help kids with learning disabilities. The app introduces children to letters on the screen, as well as on the keyboard. They will have hours of fun with this one.

17.    Math Elements
This is a great app for kids up to 8 years old. It takes them through basic mathematical concepts and then progressively moves onto more complicated concepts. You will not be able to move forward with the app until you have absorbed the required information.

18.    Sushi Scramble
Sushi Scramble is a hilarious take on spelling. Words need to be built in order to feed hungry customers. This is basically gamified spelling – which teaches kids while allowing them to have loads of fun too!

19.    Watch & Find
In short, this is an object recognition game which incorporates the characters from the popular kids' TV series, Veggie Tales.

20.    Addimal Adventure
This app is designed to slowly introduce children to addition. Hours of fun can be had with this app.

21.    5 Little Monkeys
This app is all about nursery rhymes and encourages language development. In a nutshell, it is an interactive counting song.

22.    ABC Games
ABC Games is a fantastic game which teaches kids the alphabet in a fun and interactive way.

23.    GazziliShapes
This app is aimed more at pre-school kids, to teach them how to identify shapes. Each activity has to be completed in order to unlock the next. Kids will have hours of fun with this one.

24.    GazziliScience
In a nutshell, this is an interactive storybook for kids. It will teach them about plants, the four seasons and so much more.

Chadwick said that the list is by no means exhaustive, and that mobile technology could give children an edge in their education.

"Technology is an incredible enabler and it can help our kids to get and stay ahead of the pack."

Do you have a favourite educational application? Send your thoughts to News24.
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