Tuesday, October 4, 2011

3 iPhone Apps to help maintain sanity

At the Stunt Ben house, we no longer measure time in minutes, we measure in lengths of diversions. My two year old doesn't want to sit in his chair at restaurants for more than 1 and 1/2 chicken strips. He doesn't want to sit in the stroller for more than 3 storefront windows at a time and likes to kick the back of my car seat and has the endurance to do it for 3 showings of Toy Story 2 straight. The stress and tension of stringing together micro diversions can drive any dad to the limits of sanity. But our days of stringing together diversion after diversion are over. I have found salvation in the iPhone and these three magical apps.
  1. Thomas the Tank Engine Game Pack by HIT Entertainment- 3 games in 1 $2.99
    This app has 3 games rolled into a single app. "Match the Engines" is a memory game in which your little monster will flip over cards and have to find matching pairs. It also gets them even more acquainted with the hundreds of characters in the Thomas the Train franchise...joy. It also comes with a touch screen puzzle in which kids have to put the picture of their favorite engine together. Finally a maze game that challenges little ones to place missing pieces of tracks together so Thomas can get to the end. This app has kept my buddy entertained for dozens of minutes (that's years in toddler attention span) and saved my sanity time and time again. And it seems educational. This app provides plenty of calm minutes, so my guess is that the ROI is about .01 cents per non-squirmy minute. That's a bargain!
  2. Super WHY by ABC Kids - $2.99
    Like the aforementioned Thomas the Train app, this is an amalgamation of games which helps to string together periods of peacefulness even while your toddler jumps from activity to activity within the app. This app teaches letters, writing, rhyming and rudimentary sentence structure. The sentence part is beyond my guys' skill level, but the app still entertains and teaches him. I think this purchase will continue to hold his attention as his skills and understanding of letters, words and sentences expands. A high return on investment for $2.99.
  3. AlphaBaby by Laura Dickey - $.99
    The free version is the App that got me and my son hooked on the iPhone, encouraged me to buy him an iPod Touch, and a plethora of kid apps there after. This App still holds a soft spot in my heart because it not only opened the door to a few peaceful moments while pushing the stroller (past 3 storefront windows), it also taught my 2 year old numbers, shapes, and the alphabet in about 5 days. I was amazed at how quickly he learned and enjoyed playing with this App. It's simple, you touch the screen and either a number, shape or letter appears with a voice saying what it is. If you want to add a personal touch, you can record your voice over the provided canned voice so your child learns these important lessons to your voice. If you are looking for a way to help your little one learn letters, numbers, and shapes, I highly recommend this App.
As you can tell from the descriptions, these Apps not only provide a little sanity to your crazed hectic days and nights, they also help your child learn as well as reinforce valuable early learnings.

Any recommendations for favorite children Apps? Please share your experiences and favorites in the comments section of this post.

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