At this point in the summer, you have probably done a lot of fun things: You’ve gone to baseball camp, visited your grandparents and maybe hit the zoo a couple of times. (Bao Bao is so cute!) Whatever you’ve been doing, you are probably tired and soaked in sweat.
Today is a good day to take a breather, lounge in the air-conditioned house and check out some educational yet fun apps. KidsPost found a handful that are especially entertaining. They provide a perfect way to rest your body while also feeding your mind.
All of these apps can be purchased on the iTunes app store, Google Play, Amazon.com or BN.com.
(Always ask a parent before going online.)
Mystery Math Museum
Artgig Studio. Ages 7 to 13. $2.99 for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
Follow a ghost to find dragonflies that have escaped in the museum. Collect numbers as you move through the museum, then solve equations using those numbers to unlock doors to find more of your little winged buddies. Choose addition, subtraction, multiplication or division problems or a combination. Lifelines allow you to get out of solving three equations. Tap the paintings on the wall just for fun to see what they say.
Lighthouse Learning Studios. Ages 8 to 13. $2.99 for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
Is this art or is this geometry (a kind of math that deals with shapes)? First, pick one of hundreds of weird shapes, such as something that might look like a bird with a long beak. Your task is to fill in the big shape with smaller, simple shapes such as pink triangles, green rectangles and green squares. If you need to, you can rotate the small shapes to make them fit. Do it correctly, and the shapes make a satisfying popping sound.
Motion Math: Pizza!
Motion Math. Ages 9 to 11. $3.99 for iPhone, iPad, iPad mini and iPod Touch.
You own a pizzeria! First, pick your avatar, then take $50 to the grocery store to buy ingredients. Name your pizza and figure out how much it should cost. Then start selling! You’ll need to work a cash register and do some math, too. Keep up with demand as people come pouring in to your pizzeria. At the end of the day, see how much you’ve earned. Earn enough money and you can add new pizzas to the menu and decorations to the storefront. Running a business is hard! Don’t run out of money, lose the store and lose the game.
Medieval Math Battle
SpinFall. Ages 9 to 13. Free to $1.99 for Android and Nook.
Use your math skills, along with a little bravery, to battle oversize ants, trolls and dragons! The more math equations you answer correctly, the better you fight the evil forces. Earn points as you win battles so you can buy new swords and potions. The free version includes only addition problems. Pay $1.99 to test your other math powers.
Tynker. Ages 9 to 12. Basic edition is free for iPad. Premium edition is $4.99 for iPad and Android.
If you are curious about how to code — that is, how to tell something on your computer screen to move up or turn around — start with this app, which became available on Android last week. There you’ll find a puzzle called Codey’s Quest, in which you help a cute purple monster move along a path while avoiding obstacles. Earn points as you drag and drop blocks with coding commands that allow Codey to walk and jump. This introduction is simple, but a second puzzle requires you to use coding that creates spins and turns. (For additional puzzles, the premium app is a better value than in-app purchases.) Kids also can build and share their own games.
Building Blocks Media. Ages 6 to 10. $2.99 for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
Be a musician and a painter at the same time! Musical notes play along with your brushstrokes. Choose a lighter color, and the notes sound higher; darker colors sound lower. The musical scales are made of half-note intervals so the song you play sounds a little haunting. The cool thing is that you can save your work and then play it back again.
Duckie Deck Development. Ages 6 to 8. $2.99 for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
It’s cool to make art out of trash in real life. Now you can make it on the computer, too! Start by choosing a piece of trash such as a red cup, a milk carton or an old bag. Then spray paint it and add a few of the 50 or so decorations: a paper clip here, a red pipe cleaner there, some newspapers clippings or maybe even a piece of a bird’s nest. Voila!
Red Jumper. Ages 8 to 13. Free for your first book. For unlimited books, $2.49 for Android or $4.99 for iPad, which also requires the free iBooks app.
Want to make your own book about your summer vacation with Grandma? With words, photos, music and even a video of your little sister on the water slide, your story comes together with the help of this app. It is so cool, allowing you to write words, resize photos and text, and even add a soundtrack. Then you can e-mail it to Grandma.
Fresh Fruits: Rhythm of the City
Ereading Worksheets. Ages 6 to 8. 99 cents for iPad.
When we say “just for fun,” we mean it. Groove down the city street with an apple, a banana, a pear, an orange, grapes and a strawberry. Tap the objects around the fruit to hear more sounds and the music of the city. Go with the rhythm or make up your own. It’s funky fun.