31 Top Kids' Software Titles

31 Top Kids' Software Titles

EDUCATION: Learning Should Be Fun


You don't have to be a teacher to know that different kids learn at different paces and in different ways. Luckily, there's a host of Mac applications that, at the very least, make learning enjoyable while they help your kids grasp new concepts, review material they've already learned, and deepen their knowledge in a range of subjects


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LittleFingers Preschool, Little Fingers Classroom (Volumes 1 to 4)
LittleFingers Preschool is a set of educational games that get kids used to the concept of the Mac as a learning tool. Eschewing a complex backstory or flashy graphics, Preschool is a set of six straightforward games that help kids pick up or practice skills like the alphabet, color and shape recognition, puzzle solving, counting, and matching. Animal characters act as friendly guides. Younger preschoolers (2 to 3) will love the games, but our 4-year-old was over it after 30 minutes. The Classroom series covers a larger gamut and features learning games appropriate to specific age and grade levels, pre-K and kindergarten (Volume 1) through grades 4 and 5 (Volume 4).


COMPANY: LittleFingers
CONTACT: www.littlefingers.com
PRICE: $19.99 each
AGE RANGE: 2 to 4 (Preschool), 3 to 11 (Classroom)
REQUIREMENTS: Mac OS 10.1 to 10.4
Fun, no-nonsense learning games for preschoolers and schoolkids.
Older preschoolers may lose interest quickly (Preschool). Software may not run properly on Intel Macs.



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Kids (and grown-ups) will enjoy learning the alphabet the Seuss-ian way.


Dr. Seuss ABC


No childhood is complete without a healthy dose of Dr. Seuss. Digitally inclined kids are in luck, because Software MacKiev has made Seuss-ian tales available for onscreen consumption. Presented as an interactive book, Dr. Seuss ABC guides you through each page of the original story, adding clickable bits that reveal entertaining animations and add new life to the storyline. If your child lacks the fine motor skills for precise mouse movement, you may need to help select items to click. There's also a basic storytelling mode that simple reads the ABC story, and audio files that you can put on your iPod for ABCs on the r-o-a-d.


COMPANY: Software MacKiev
CONTACT: www.mackiev.com
PRICE: $24.95
AGE RANGE: 3 to 6
REQUIREMENTS: Mac OS 10.1.5 or later
Great voice narration. Includes audio for your iPod.
Interactive bits require mouse precision that might be beyond a little kid's ability.



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Sammy's Science House introduces kids to the nuances of nature.


Bailey's Book House, Millie's Math House, Sammy's Science House, Trudy's Time & Place House


Edmark's House series introduces young children to reading, math, science, and useful skills like telling time - in a friendly, accessible manner appropriate for the preschool to first-grade set. Bailey's Book House focuses on language development - word and letter recognition, sounds, and so on. Millie's Math House makes learning basic arithmetic fun. Sammy's Science House does an excellent job presenting thoroughly engaging activities while teaching about animals, recycling, nature, the environment, and more. And Trudy's Time & Place House gives kids a foundation in telling time, reading maps, units of measure, and geography. Younger kids will need your help navigating at first.


CONTACT: www.learningcompany.com
PRICE: $59.95 each
AGE RANGE: 3 to 7
REQUIREMENTS: Mac OS 10.4 or later
Excellent variety of engaging activities. Challenging for a wide range of skills.
Pricey. You'll have to remind your kids that there are other activities to try.



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Destination Reading


This children's application was developed for use in the classroom, but River Deep makes it available to parents as a Web-based subscription. (Parents can also subscribe to all courses in the Destination Math series.) The two Destination Reading courses available via subscription cover readers from preschool to third grade, offering kids a variety of activities to practice and improve reading skills and become familiar with language arts concepts. The interface is friendly enough, but our testers found the navigation a bit fuzzy at times. For example, in some of the modules, it wasn't always clear what to click once the narrative ended.


COMPANY: River Deep
CONTACT: www.learningcompany.com
PRICE: $59.99 per course per year
AGE RANGE: 4 to 8
REQUIREMENTS: Safari or Firefox Web browser, high-speed Internet connection
Web-based program makes it accessible from anywhere. Nice variety of lessons and activities.
Younger readers will need help from parents to navigate through activities.



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Kids can populate their own Science Station diorama with creatures of their choice.


Thinkin' Science


Apparently, science has become a subject that you have to trick kids into caring about. Up against the lure of video games, we can see how that might apply. But Thinkin' Science does a slick job teaching kids stuff about, say, fungi. And physics and weather - and everything else that seems much less glamorous (but is actually more important) than flashy video games. Our testers' personal fave was Animal Tracking, a hands-on module that covers animals and their habitats and habits.


CONTACT: www.rmlearning.com
PRICE: $15.95
AGE RANGE: 4 to 8
REQUIREMENTS: Mac OS 7.5.6 or later, OS X (in Classic mode)
Easy for young kids to set up and use with minimum parental involvement.
Might be kind of basic for older kids.







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tsk ler thank you (:


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You are absoluterly right it helps you to develop the interest in the children so that they can learn while they think that they are playing, and also very helpful to judge the abiluities of the studenst so that you can know where you should workout on the speciefic child. Regards,David Patterson http://www.wholesalepages.co.uk


Mike R.

What a great article. As a parent, I'm sometimes hard-pressed to find good Mac software for my 5 and 8 year olds. These are very good reviews of what's out there.



It is good that someone writes articles which really matters something.

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