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50 Best iPhone and iPad Apps for Kids

You love your iPhone, and for good reason. It's your social calendar, your family organizer, and your connection to the best friend you haven't seen since your first year of college. Your kids love your iPhone, too, but for them, it's all about the sheer fun of messing around with Mom's apps. When you consider that the iTunes Store has launched more than 500,000 apps to date, there's plenty of fun to be had!

For Babble's roundup of the top 50 iOS (Apple's operating platform) apps for kids, we looked at some basic criteria that you and your family might also consider before downloading an app. Every app we tested had to have received Apple's age-appropriate "4+" rating. We also considered whether the app allowed parents to participate in, or at least oversee, whatever their kids were doing onscreen. And, even if the apps were designed to do nothing more than keep the kids busy while you're in line at the store, there had to be some positive or educational element to it.

We've broken down our top 50 apps by category, price and age range. (Though many of these apps have a free edition, these "lite" versions often include ads or limit the number of features you can use.) Apps that are labeled "HD" are exclusive to iPad, but nearly all of the apps we selected can be used on any iOS device you own. We hope you have as much fun checking these out as we did testing them. And if we missed one, be sure to tell us about your favorite apps! - Aaron Burgess

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Juno’s Piano – Learn Songs, Play with Parents,

and Free Play

50 Best iPhone and iPad Apps for Kids: Juno's Piano-Learn Songs, Play with Parents, and Free Play

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Juno’s Piano’s Rankings

There’s no shortage of virtual-piano apps out there, but if you’re looking for an app that responds to kids just as creatively as they play with it, Juno’s Piano can’t be beat. The app stars Juno, the main character of the award-winning DVD series Juno Baby and Juno Jr., who cheers along your little prodigy as he or she moves through the musical basics. The clean, colorful interface presents you with the typical set of on-screen piano keys, but you have three options for learning: “Learn a Song” mode walks you through songs a few notes at a time; “Play Together” lets Mom or Dad join in; and “Free Play” is just what it sounds like – arguably the easiest way to keep your youngest players entertained.

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53 thoughts on “50 Best iPhone and iPad Apps for Kids 2011

  1. Glynn Hayward says:

    Some great apps reviewed – great to know about them will be downloading. Roodie Noodies is awesome!

  2. Julissa Aldana says:

    My oldest son (12 yrs) loves this app of angry birds.

  3. Wayne Allen Bateman says:

    Please permit me to introduce you to a new childrens educational game for the iPad and iPhone:
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/counting-beads/id441820190?mt=8&ls=1#

    Counting Beads is a totally fun way for children to learn numbers and letters of the alphabet. The numbers (or letters) appear as colored beads that you connect by dragging each bead into its next higher numbered bead. As you connect the beads in numbered order, you create a chain that follows the lead bead as you drag. This teaches the numbers visually. You can also move the bead chain by holding the device face-up parallel to the floor and tilting it slightly to let gravity roll the leading bead downhill. Even older folks can have fun with this amusing simple game.

    A brief demo video of this app is available on UTube:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GwIbIZOQu0

  4. jennifer says:

    why would anyone want their four year old spending one minute of time playing video game?

  5. Adriana Phillips says:

    We are going to be on an Air plane for 8-10 hours at the end of the year so this list is great thank you.

  6. J.J. Wei says:

    Hello,

    I am the marketing representative of Ice Whale, an educational iPhone/iPad app development team. We are now providing Math Exercise Kid which is a series of interactive math exercise applications for children. We also provide free trials.

    We launched our latest app with a special promotion, the FREE full version Math Exercise Kid (Division) with no ads. This special promotion will be ended at 5:00 PM, 5th of August, 2011 (Eastern Daylight Time). We strongly welcome you to take advantage of our special offer.

    We are now releasing our latest Math Exercise Kid HD (Addition & Subtraction). It is an iPad app with many new features. Here is the direct link to app store.

    Math Exercise Kid HD (Addition & Subtraction)
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/math-exercise-kid-hd-addition/id453357321?mt=8

    Download Math Exercise Kid (Division) Free for limited time!
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/math-exercise-kid-division/id449543879?ls=1&mt=8#
    Math Kid Free
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/math-kid-free-addition/id440987747?mt=8&ls=1
    Math Kid Free (Multiplication)
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/math-kid-free-multiplication/id446179602?mt=8
    Please visit our blog at http://icewhale.com/ for more information.

  7. Anonymous says:

    dsfdsfdsf

  8. Anonymous says:

    Check out this fun Bible book app for kids!
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/jesus-story/id450635528?mt=8

  9. Steve says:

    Great picks!

    For custom bedtime stories and a tool to teach creative writing check out our new app, Picturebook – http://bit.ly/picturebookApp

    Picturebook lets you create illustrated stories on the iPad and then share them with anyone with an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.

  10. Balthazar says:

    Balt,Balt,Balthazar…Fameous cartoon finally on iPhone as game. Check it out…

    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/balthazar/id454683939?mt=8#

  11. MamaBear says:

    This is a really helpful list. I’ve found similar articles and great tips at http://ikidapps.com. Having professional reviews of iphone kid’s apps has helped steer me in the right direction for iPhone use and my little one.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Please check Singing Daisies, i just release the app yesterday for the iPhone and the iPad. here you can see a video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S2Oe8UkryrI and download the app from here http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/id425654749

  13. Anonymous says:

    Look at this web browser app for kids and stay away from porn: http://safeweb.boogoo.com

  14. alex says:

    My kid loves Singing Daisies, you should add it for the iPhone on your list. We found it on their site, they have an online game.

    http://www.singingdaisies.com

  15. Kathleen Collins says:

    New app – ABCKeyboard. Super cute! Learn letters and learn to find them on the keyboard. Lots of fun activities! Kept my granddaughter entertained on a one hour drive!! Worth my money!!

  16. Tali says:

    Great apps, thanks! One more cool app for little kids: DJ Mix Kids, by Technolio!

  17. Mike says:

    my son’s favourite iPhone game is “Super Kids”, it’s really beautifully designed educational game, you can find it here
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/super-kids/id476304571?mt=8&ls=1

  18. Carla says:

    My daughter loves Aloe ABC, she’s learning and playing and now traces letters and numbers quite well! http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/aloe-abc/id476496813?ls=1&mt=8

  19. Anonymous says:

    Please check out TapZoid, a kid friendly app for making whimsical images. http://bit.ly/Tapzoid

  20. AppCurry says:

    Please check out “Talking Car Zippy”. Kids love cars and a car that repeats what you say in a funny voice, can dance and react to touches can be hours of fun for kids.

    Appstore link:
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/talking-car-zippy/id484841013?mt=8

  21. Antonio says:

    Please check out “Under The Christmas Tree”.
    Under The Christmas Tree is a free sound cards app for Kids.
    Under the Christmas tree sound cards is a free educational game of the EducAppy line by Wemotic, designed with parents and experts for pre-school age children.

  22. bmccoy says:

    Hello!

    We are excited and amazed at the positive feedback we have gotten since we announced the launch our first game/app, Lava Luau, a few weeks ago. Following up on our initial success, we’ve just launched our second iOS game, Santa’s Grounded. And in an effort to continue the momentum it would be wonderful if we could get you to do quick review of our app.

    About Santas Grounded
    Santas Grounded is a family friendly, pick up and play action game, bringing the familiar platform experience to the mobile world through Apples iPhone. With simple rules and intuitive tap controls, Santas Grounded, is easy to learn, fun to play and challenging to master. Various levels of fun add degrees of difficulty and dynamic game play that includes baddies, achievements and hidden presents make this a fun game for casual players and gamers alike. The players mission is to navigate eight different levels collecting Jingle Bells, Points and Santas Reindeer along the way. Players are rewarded with various levels of achievement for their efforts in helping Santa. With an endless amount of gameplay, Santas Grounded is challenging enough to keep players engaged for hours and is sure to be a hit this Holiday season..

    Now available on the iPhone/iPod. http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/santas-grounded/id482961944?ls=1&mt=8

    For more information and a look at the game, please visit http://www.santasgrounded.com/

  23. Maya says:

    One of the best app for kids is “Music color”. My youngest kid know the color and open his mind to the best classical music. beautiful images.

  24. banjosteve says:

    Our two sons love to play Fun for Smart Kids ( http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/fun-for-smart-kids/id488544301?ls=1&mt=8 ). The shapes matching game is great for our 4 yr old and the antonyms game is great for our 7 yr old.

  25. ProudDaddy says:

    My son’s favorite is Spy Epic – Gadgets. He loves to pretend that he is a secret agent on a mission.

  26. Dad1974 says:

    My two daughters love to play Bo’s Bedtime Story, even if they don’t want to go bed.

  27. Esteban says:

    Great educational app for iPad “50 FRIENDS”!
    Funny animals, good music and simple gameplay
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/50-friends/id498455884

  28. IAmAmess says:

    GREAT list, but you missed a few of my toddler’s absolute favorites! http://www.iamamess.com/top-10-educational-apps-for-toddlers/

  29. Zup says:

    My son loves all the Good Glue Apps: Garbage Truck, Dump Truck, Fire Truck and a lot more. Perfect for young kids! 1- 5

  30. sparkleas says:

    My 5 year old is loving this too!

  31. Sasa says:

    Sunny’s Story Paint is also great for creative kids.

  32. chris says:

    Just wanted to let you know that one of the girls in my mothers group just dowloaded all the apps you suggested in this blog. And where is iSmarty game! its really a few hours of rest and tranquility ))) http://itunes.apple.com/app/ismarty/id501983900
    https://market.android.com/details?id=com.ada.ismarty

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  34. Melissa says:

    My three nephews (3, 7, and 12 years) love to play Adventures of Marvin and Mel: Word Rescue.

    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/adventures-marvin-mel-word/id505043225?mt=8

  35. Tayla45 says:

    My kid can’t get enough of Barnyard Bluegrass. Absolutely awesome music for an app.

  36. dlaczego says:

    http://www.p2games.co.uk have so many great apps for kids!

  37. Kelly says:

    There is an app/book called Kasey’s Music Jams for Kids on the itunes store. It is a book or young beginners 3 and up designed to help teach them to play along with music. It is made up of 17 songs with vibrant illustrations and quirky song lyrics.

    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/kaseys-guitar-jams-for-kids/id511771442?mt=8
    Promo video-http://youtu.be/XFEI44DYr_I
    http://www.kaseysmusicjamsforkids.com

  38. chayanica says:

    There is this another cool app for kids “vmatch” by roverside…
    great learning of numbers , alphabets ,picture dictionary etc

  39. chayanica says:

    There is this another coll app for kids “vmatch” by roverside..

  40. Suehailee says:

    Try Toca Boca. My son is addicted to dis one..!

  41. Mark says:

    Recently released and getting rave reviews 4.5/5 stars iOS/Android,Facebook, and Amazon device friendly “Fishing Paradise 3D” players describe as “Addictive” as you embark on a global fishing adventure catching exotic species, players can also develop their own lake raising fish,hosting tournaments, and winning prizes- Lots of fun and the graphics are amazing.

  42. Nick says:

    I don’t know what I would do if my kids didn’t have this app. Family Talk.
    They are using it and laughing for ours.

  43. John Sword says:

    My son loves this one, just for doodling around and coloring but it also has a great educational feature, check it out: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/draw-eng/id779456680?mt=8

  44. Jonsie says:

    Great app for kids and parents. Think you can handle being the Dentist? Give it a try…

    https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/crazy-little-med-in-office/id787845532?mt=8

  45. Pabelo says:

    https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/memory-farm/id797827354?ls=1&mt=8

    A great game for children to test their memorization skills. Listen to the sounds of each animal. Then try to remember the order of each sound. How many levels can you go?

  46. Jess says:

    I need a game for a 11 year old girl and I need it now so emaile me right away

  47. Theo Kingston says:

    Our son loves playing this animal app called MiniPlaces on our iPad http://goo.gl/iXY6so. Games like these helped to stimulate his interests in animals and going to the zoo as he got older.

  48. Dm says:

    Application ‘Sky Balloons’ will teach your kid colors. Very easy and fun. :) Not just for kids :) )

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