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Turn tablet time into learning time with fun apps

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[ This sponsored article was written by IDG Creative Lab, a partner of PCWorld, and not by PCWorld's editorial staff. ]

There’s no denying that kids love tablets – and hey, who can blame them? Those colorful, interactive slabs provide hours of entertainment watching videos, taking photos, or playing games. And while you may want to share the joy of technology with your young ones, you probably don’t want your two-year-old playing Dead Effect or your five year old out-scoring you in Grand Theft Auto.

There’s an easy compromise: Just load up your tablet with fun, educational games appropriate for their age level! If you have an Intel-powered Android or Windows 8 device like the Acer Iconia A1 830 or HP Pavilion X360, you can download a bunch of great games for kids that are fun and thathelp them learn. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

The Basics: Apps for Toddlers and Younger Children

If your child is still picking up basic subjects like colors and shapes, consider Bubbly Kids which teaches those subjects as well as numbers, letters, and matching skills via illustrated sea creatures that are pretty enough to be in a print book. Kids learn letters and numbers through games with a full voice-over to help learning.

Another good, simple app is Alphabet Toddler, which presents each letter of the alphabet in an interactive format designed for touchscreens. Kids can learn the letter “A” by picking apples from a tree and putting them in a basket, or the letter “C” by blowing out candles on a cake.

Make Math Easier for Youngsters

If your child struggles with math, there are plenty of apps to help with that too. Kids Numbers and Math focuses on learning numbers, minimums and maximums, and basic addition and subtraction. Motion Math: Hungry Fish, meanwhile, helps hone basic arithmetic skills via a game where you pinch numbers together to feed your fish. Older kids might find something like iMath more helpful – it helps kids up to 12 years old learn addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, decimals, fractions, and more. Lessons are presented in the form of word problems, exercises, and fun games like Math for Speed where kids solve math problems in order to move their car ahead in a race.

Keep Older Kids Engaged with Creative Subjects

Older kids can have fun while learning on a tablet too – it’s all about finding the right subject matter for them to dig into. The Stack the State app for Windows 8 is a fun way to teach kids about the states in the union. As you learn about state capitals, locations, and flags, you earn animated versions of each state to place on your own map. The more you learn, the more complete the map becomes.

Science fans will enjoy the Tour the Universe app that takes you on a virtual tour of the planets, stars, and galaxies with plenty of high-res images that look great on the bright HD screens of tablet devices like the Dell Venue 8 Pro. Meanwhile, kids interested in languages might want to try out the Sign Language for Dummies app, which teaches kids of all ages (even those too young to speak) a variety of words in ASL.

With so many subjects to study and so many apps available, your kids can have a whole world of knowledge right at their fingertips. Stop thinking of your devices as a way to occupy or entertain your kids – and start seeing them as a portal to new ideas and a path to personal growth.

[ This sponsored article was written by IDG Creative Lab, a partner of PCWorld, and not by PCWorld's editorial staff. ]

This story, "Turn tablet time into learning time with fun apps" was originally published by BrandPost.

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