So you’ve got a brand new iPad and kids who are clamoring to play on it. What you need now are a handful of high quality apps with good replay value. You don’t have time to slog through the entire iTunes App Store looking for them though. Who does?
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Grade: A- | Age rating: 4+
Oh, what a cute story this game presents! An adorable green monster arrives by mail and it’s up to your kids to cut a series of ropes (negotiating the laws of physics and gravity) to feed it candy.
The graphics are perfect, the music and sound effects are appealing, and the game play is very challenging. What more could you ask for? Search us.
Another silly story line that we just can’t help loving. Evil green pigs have stolen these birds’ eggs and are now hiding out in their castles. It’s up to your kids to wreak revenge on the pigs using (of course!) little red, black, blue, and yellow birds and a giant sling shot. Huh?
Different birds have different powers. Some are bombs. Some are speed birds. Some multiply mid-flight. We’ve lost hours and hours of our lives to this game at our house. Addictive doesn’t even begin to cover it.
Using their finger as a blade, kids swipe various pieces of fruit that fly up in the air, chopping them in half. In classic mode, they also have to avoid the bombs. This game is fun, easy, and very hard to put down.
We like the fact that you get all the action with none of the violence. If your kids are the stress-y type, have them play in Zen mode.
The most downloaded iPhone app of all time is even better on the iPad—get ready to jump and jump and jump again in this insanely addictive game. Tilt the iPad left and right to jump from platform to platform.
You can also get a boost from jetpacks, propeller beanies, and springs, but watch out for monsters!
Good luck tearing yourself away from this app once you start playing — you’re going to need it.
PlayTime Theater is a customizable, interactive castle play set that gives kids characters, props, and sound effects and invites them to create and record short shows.
This truly innovative app delivers what so many others promise (but don’t quite deliver): free play. In a crowded field, this app stands out as the single best use of touch-screen technology that we’ve ever seen for kids.
A fun, addictive and appropriate for all ages. Kids slide google-eyed chuzzles across the iPhone screen trying to group 3 like-colored chuzzles together. When they do, the chuzzles explode with a giggle, sending fur and eyeballs flying.
I’ve played this game on the PC, the iPhone, and the iPad and the iPad is head and shoulders above the rest. I’ve lost hours of my life to it.
Thirty wacky creatures are divided into five slideable parts on 20 backgrounds. Kids can mix and match them—with accompanying zany sound effects—to their hearts’ content.
Playing it on the larger screen will make this silly app more accessible to even the youngest of comedians. You know, your kids.
An intuitive, educational word search game for new readers, rabid wordsmiths, and everyone in between. Younger kids may need a little help, but they’ll soon be hooked too.
Link letters left, right, up, and down on your iPhone screen to build words and earn points with this fun app. Make too many short words and you get burning tiles, which can literally blow up in your face.
This is one of our all time favorite iPad apps. It is a one-stop parent-curated video browsing gadget for kids.
Channels include Animals, Fun Shows, Learn, Music, People, and Places and developers have listed hundreds of hours of kid-friendly programming with everything from funny kitten videos to a Discovery Education short biography of Ludwig van Beethoven.
If you’ve ever wished you could just let your kids watch YouTube while you got some things done around the house, this is the app for you.
Age rating: 6+ | Price: $0.99
I sort of hesitate to include this one, but my kids love it, so yours probably will too. It’s not so much an IQ test as a game of reflexes and quick thinking.
It’s actually stylish and fun and very, very entertaining—too bad about the name. My kids compete for family high score regularly and laugh while they play.
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