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25 Fun Apps And Websites To Teach Kids About Technology

25 Fun Apps And Websites To Teach Kids About Technology

There is a wealth of sites available to teach kids about technology in a fun and safe way. Applications are becoming a popular method of enjoyment for kids. Here we explore 25 websites and apps which will help kids to learn the basics and then delve deeper into the available pool of knowledge. Social Media Skills It is important that children learn the intricacies of social media, and what it is safe to reveal there. It is probably best therefore, that they gain these skills in a safe environment before they are released onto sites that cater more for adult users. The following four sites are all recommended by Common Sense Media who rate sites according to criteria such as child friendliness and privacy.

1. Club Penguin

This is a Disney site which offers an introduction to virtual worlds. It is aimed at children aged 6 to 14 who can learn to build avatars, chat, make friends, and try out a range of games.

club penguin

    2. iTwixie

    This site is aimed at pre-teen girls and it is less about who is the prettiest, and more about who is the smartest and kindest. It is a site which encourages generosity to others in words and deeds, and allows kids to express themselves creatively.

    iTwixie

      3. The Pink Group

      Once children are over the age of 13, they then legally can set up an account on Facebook, and many of the other social media sites hold the same age criteria. It is a good idea however, to check your kids’ privacy settings when they create a profile on any adult centered site and to outline some safety rules for using the website. The Pink Group offers a central place to find all the information on images and branding you will need, in order to help your kids set up their profiles.

      pink group

        4. Franktown Rocks

        On this site it is all about the music, which has been pre-screened for child friendliness. There is a virtual world for kids to explore which offers games and videos all catering for music appreciation.

        franktown rocks

          5. Sweety High

          This is aimed squarely at tween and teenage girls with a focus on fashion, shopping and celebrities. Girls are encouraged to express themselves but it is all moderated and safety is of the utmost importance.

          sweety high

            6. Big Brown Bear

            The keyboard takes up the whole screen on this site which makes it easier for children to fully focus on the task at hand.

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            big brown bear

              Typing Skills  One of the first skills that children need to know, and which will make their time online much easier, is to learn how to type. Typing skills reinforce language learning, alphabet knowledge and reading comprehension. These five apps and websites will get your kids off to a good start.

              7.  Learning Games for Kids

              This site offers a number of free games which will help improve typing skills whilst making the process fun. ‘The Typing of the Ghosts’ and ‘Arachnid Falls’ are sure to make any kids smile and they will be so involved in the game they will forget that they are also learning.

              learning for kids

                8. Key Seeker

                This is suitable for young children who need to increase their letter recognition. It is coloring and fun, featuring a wide range of cute animal graphics.

                key seeker

                  9. Dance Mat Typing

                  Dance Mat Typing from the BBC helps children to learn to touch type. There are four levels to progress through and at the end of each you can test your typing speed and claim a fun reward.

                  dance mat typing

                    10. TypeFast Typing Tutor

                    Compatible with both the iPad and iPhone this app helps to increase speed and accuracy. It is better for older children as it doesn’t have the fun element of the other sites.

                    typefast

                      Coding Skills Web development and design are such key elements of our current world that it is never too early to start teaching children these skills. These seven apps have all been recommended by Edutopia and they are an excellent place to start.

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                      11. Game Star Mechanic

                      What could be more fun as a kid than learning to design your own video game. This is aimed at children aged 7 to 14 years.

                      game star mechanic

                        12. Scratch

                        This is a programming language, designed by staff and students at MIT, which is created specifically for children aged 8 to 16 years.

                        scratch

                          13. Tynker

                          This has a similar interface to Scratch but whereas that was designed for kids to program with, Tynker was designed in order to teach programming.

                          tynker

                            14. Move the Turtle

                            This offers another way to teach kids programming but it does so in a much more game based way.

                            move the turtle

                              15. Hopscotch

                              This is similar in design to Scratch and Tynker but is only for use on the iPad.

                              hopscotch

                                16. Daisy The Dinosaur

                                This introduces coding to the very youngest users and is a fun accessible way for them to get started.

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                                daisy the dinosaur

                                  17. Cargo-Bot

                                  Again, this is a game based way to teach coding skills. Instead of just using a crane to move blocks, you actually have to program it to do so.

                                  cargo bot

                                    Online Safety  Kids often need to use search engines to do research for homework and school projects. If they are given access to adult search engines however, they can easily come across sites that you won’t want them to have exposure to. The following four websites offer kid friendly search capability, and while not infallible so you will want to monitor access, they are a lot safer for kids than a standard search engine.

                                    18. Squirrel Net

                                    This is a general search engine for kids, which is powered by Ask Jeeves for kids.

                                    squirrel net

                                      19.  Kid Rex

                                      This site is powered by Google but it is built by kids for kids.

                                      kid rex

                                        20. Swiggle

                                        Again powered by Google this one relates more to academic subjects.

                                        swiggle

                                          21.  GoGooligans

                                          The final engine is powered by Google and offers academic search for children and teenagers. It will be personal preference for you and your kids as to which of these four sites you choose.

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                                          General Technology Skills Here are a further four sites that help with different areas of technology skills.

                                          22. Love to Know Home School

                                          For adults it is often helpful to have some lesson plans on how to teach technology. These can be invaluable if you home-school, but also helpful just as a guide for Moms and Dads.

                                          love to know home school

                                            23. How The Internet Works

                                            Do your kids ask you all the time how the internet works? Are you left scratching your head? This guide will help them, and you, to figure it all out.

                                            how the internet works

                                              24. Bees and Honey

                                              This is a fun game that will teach younger kids how to use the mouse smoothly and accurately.

                                              bees and honey

                                                25. KidBlog

                                                If you want to teach the kids in your classroom about blogging, this is the perfect place to start. They can set up their own blog and you can work together on creating content and images, publishing their work and marketing the site.

                                                kid blog

                                                    

                                                  Featured photo credit: Kid Excited When Playing an App/Dollar Photo Club via dpc2.ftcdn.net

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                                                  Published on January 18, 2019

                                                  Best 5 Language Learning Apps to Easily Master a New Language

                                                  Best 5 Language Learning Apps to Easily Master a New Language

                                                  Learning a new language is no easy feat. While a language instructor is irreplaceable, language learning apps have come to revolutionize a lot of things and it has made language learning much easier. Compared to language learning websites, apps offer a more interactive experience to learn a new language.

                                                  The following language learning apps are the top recommended apps for your language learning needs:

                                                  1. Duolingo

                                                    Duolingo is a very successful app that merged gamification and language learning. According to Expanded Ramblings, the app now counts with 300 million users.

                                                    Duolingo offers a unique concept, an easy-to-use app and is a great app to accompany your language acquisition journey. The courses are created by native speakers, so this is not data or algorithm-based.

                                                    The app is free and has the upgrade options with Duolingo Plus for $9.99, which are add free lessons. The mobile app offers 25 languages and is popular for English-speaking learners learning other languages.

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                                                    Download the app

                                                    2. HelloTalk

                                                      HelloTalk aims to facilitate speaking practice and eliminate the stresses of a real-time and life conversation. The app allows users to connect to native speakers and has a WhatsApp like chat that imitates its interface.

                                                      There is a perk to this app. The same native speakers available also want to make an even exchange and learn your target language, so engagement is the name of the game.

                                                      What’s more, the app has integrated translation function that bypasses the difficulties of sending a message with a missing word and instead fills in the gap.

                                                      Download the app

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                                                      3. Mindsnacks

                                                        Remember that Duolingo has integrated gamification in language learning? Well, Mindsnacks takes the concept to another level. There is an extensive list of languages available within the app comes with eight to nine games designed to learn grammar, vocabulary listening.

                                                        You will also be able to visualize your progress since the app integrates monitoring capabilities. The layout and interface is nothing short of enjoyable, cheerful and charming.

                                                        Download the app

                                                        4. Busuu

                                                          Bussu is a social language learning app. It is available on the web, Android, and iOS. It currently supports 12 languages and is free.

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                                                          The functionality allows users to learn words, simple dialogues and questions related to the conversations. In addition, the dialogues are recorded by native speakers, which brings you close to the language learning experience.

                                                          When you upgrade, you unlock important features including course materials. The subscription is $17 a month.

                                                          Download the app

                                                          5. Babbel

                                                            Babbel is a subscription-based service founded in 2008. According to LinguaLift, it is a paid cousing of Duolingo. The free version comes with 40 classes, and does not require you to invest any money.

                                                            Each of the classes starts with with a sequential teaching of vocabulary with the help of pictures. The courses are tailor made and adapted to the students’ level, allowing the learning to be adjusted accordingly.

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                                                            If you started learning a language and stopped, Babbel will help you pick up where you started.

                                                            Download the app

                                                            Takeaways

                                                            All the apps recommended are tailored for different needs, whether you’re beginning to learn a language or trying to pick back up one. All of them are designed by real-life native speakers and so provide you with a more concrete learning experience.

                                                            Since these apps are designed to adapt to different kinds of learning styles, do check out which one is the most suitable for you.

                                                            Featured photo credit: Yura Fresh via unsplash.com

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