Here is the setting: we are in a long-ass line at the grocery store and the kid starts to throw a fit. A world class flailing body total meltdown. This experience is right up there with a root canal. Every eye in the store is laser piercing my head as I am standing next to a Tasmanian devil with no toys, snacks, or super-nanny at your disposal (they are conveniently in the car – except the nanny). At this point I would rather have that root canal – sign me up! I am so happy I have my iPhone for these moments, otherwise we would never get any shopping done. Ever.

I get my game face on, and hand my iPhone to my kid (wondering if there is an app in there that will make them dissappear?) I am hoping he or she is into a little Angry Birds for the rest of this excruciatingly long wait. This tactic works for now, not sure if it will last but whatever works, right? If I am feeling a bit schoolteacher (guilty) I will launch one of the cool educational apps made for kids. Some are really fun and more like playing a game than doing homework. Soon my tiny tornado will be quietly playing with one of these cool apps (unless it’s the piano one – which is loud). Here are some worth checking out below. Note to app creators: please keep working on that invisibility app. How about one that will take off 20 pounds? Money tree app?

DoReMemory is a music educational app created to teach early pianists where notes belong on the treble and bass clef staffs. This app takes a unique approach. You are given the letter name of a note. Then you tap where you think that note should be on the staff. When you are correct, the note shows up, the correct pitch plays, and stars twinkle.


Balloony Word Pro Everybody likes to play Hangman but you may feel a little uncomfortable with the idea of ‘hanging’ a man to guess a few words. Then Balloony Word is for you! Balloony Word is a family-friendly educational game that helps kids practice and broaden their vocabulary skills. I love the cute illustrations!


Fish School Children will love to learn while playing with colorful schools of fish which magically transform themselves into different letters, numbers, shapes, colors and more. Fish School includes 8 fun educational activities that will engage children. These are the cutest graphics ever!


Math Girl Number Garden A fun game designed for girls + an engaging right-brain approach to numbers + cute, fresh graphics = Math Success! Count flowers and hands/fingers in patterns and get faster by recognizing patterns. Earn stars for right answers.
Replay levels to get faster and make more stars and use them to “buy” items for your garden. Fill your garden with flowers, bunnies, snails, butterflies, dragonflies, a soccer ball, a tire swing, a magic pond, a tree house, and more. I love the illustrations and I like the right-brain approach to numbers!


Rocket Math Okay boys (and girls!), here is one for you. Believe it or not math can be fun! Build your very own rockets and fly them to the stars with Rocket Math! While your rocket is floating weightlessly in space, the real fun begins! Play one of the 56 different math missions. Each mission has touchable objects floating in space, including stars, coins, clocks, 3D shapes and even pizzas! Earn a bronze, silver or gold medal and also try to beat your high score. Missions range in difficulty from even/odd numbers all the way to square roots, so kids and their parents will enjoy hours of fun while learning math.


Star Walk Since we are in space with the previous app, here is another one to enjoy. Star Walk enables you to point your iPhone at the sky and see what stars, constellations, and satellites you are looking at in real-time. Please note, you will need a 3GS/4/4th gen iPod Touch for motion tracking, otherwise this app will be just a beautiful info-packed time-sensitive interactive star atlas that allows you to set your location manually to give you the most accurate picture.