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Sat, 15 Dec 2018 13:30:00 -0500


Our favorite learning apps for tablets and smartphones

By Courtney Schley

This post was done in partnership with Wirecutter. When readers choose to buy Wirecutter's independently chosen editorial picks, Wirecutter and Engadget may earn affiliate commission. Read the full learning apps guide here.

We spent over 25 hours researching and testing more than 35 educational and learning apps recommended by educators, experts, parents, and kids. We also studied research from child developmental psychologists and the American Academy of Pediatrics about children's app use and the pedagogical principles for creating learning apps. If your family has a tablet and you want it to be more than a game-playing and video-watching device, or if you're trying to find apps for your smartphone that will do more than keep your kids occupied in a pinch, we have some great suggestions.

What are learning apps?

Based on our research, we think a good learning app should be provocative, exploratory, and open-ended; it should also have been designed with primary input from educators and curriculum developers, or shown in educational research to be an effective learning tool. The apps we cover in this guide are great learning apps not because they're designed to make kids smarter, to drill facts, or to replace in-school learning, but because they're fun and interesting for kids and adults.

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