If you'll put down Angry Birds for a moment, I'd like to tell you about some Apps I've found that have made our homeschool a little more "enriching."
App:The Peterson Field Guide to Backyard Birds is awesome! I used to have a computer program similar to this, and LOVED it. Now we have it on the iPod Touch.
How we use it: The first way we used it was in studying different states. We have a "states" coloring book that we turn to occasionally to learn more about a state that's mentioned in our Sonlight studies. Of course, the state bird is on those pages. This app is fun, because we can see the colors, location, and even hear the bird's call!
We also use it just like a field guide. If the kids spot a bird in the yard, they'll ask what it is and we use this App to look it up. It even has a checklist to keep track of all the birds you've spotted.
There are similar Apps for wildflowers and trees available, too. If you're a Field Guide junkie, this is so nice to have when you're away from home and didn't pack your field guides.
App:Appzilla is a bundle of all sorts of useful apps, but the one I like most recently is Morse Code.
How we use it: We just studied the invention of the telegraph and Samuel F. B. Morse and his code. We first went to the internet to print out a complete Morse alphabet. Then my tech-savvy husband informed me that we already had a Morse code App. It allows you to type in a short message, then, using a light, it flashes the message back to you. Super fun for playing spy in the backyard at night!
App:Scrabble and Boggle.
How we use it: Umm...we play Scrabble and Boggle. You can't beat these games for some good word-building and spelling fun!
App:Stack the States is a U.S. Geography game that's kind of a mix of Tetris and states trivia. Player is given info about a state and has to guess which state it is (multiple choice). If they guess right, the state falls down on a pile of states, and player must try to maneuver it to fall correctly.
How we use it: I really just thought this would be fun for my 10 year old, but all the kids, down to the 3 year old, love it! The 3 and 5 year olds play it and have learned quite a bit. They learn through seeing the shapes of states and remembering the names. My 10 year old still asks questions about some states, but she retains the information well.
App:Beat the Computer is a math game. It's funny to me, because the computer and it's font look like an 80's style Apple screen.
How we use it: It's more fun the flash cards! It tests the player's knowledge of multiplication tables.
App:Cute Friends is a simple, yet fun, little animal sounds game.
How we use it: We originally got this for the 3 year old (then 2) for something fun to do, but we recently let Catie (7 months) look at it, and she was very impressed! Player is given a screen showing six animals (farm, pet, exotic) and when you touch the animal it makes its sound. Simple and fun!
When you're in the App Store, search for McGraw Hill games, and you'll get a wealth of education games in many age ranges.
So now it's your turn to share: Do you have some fun apps that are educational, too?