As kids, creativity for many of us consisted of a free afternoon, a pair of scissors and a cardboard box—the old-fashioned way. While there can never be a replacement for old-fashioned, there’s something to be said for apps that encourage creativity, when used in moderation. So if you find yourself short on cardboard boxes on a rainy day, here are five safe apps that help kids learn how to nurture creativity!
1. Toca’s Hair Salon
Toca’s Hair Salon is a freestyle app that allows your child to choose from a variety of tools and colors to style each client’s hair. When your child is finished, they can snap a picture of the final look of their creation!
2. Draw and Tell by Duck Duck Moose
Draw and Tell is an open-ended drawing app where your child can draw pictures with several different tools and add in their own voice recording to create animations. While adding an exciting element to your child’s drawing, the animation can also be saved onto your phone to enjoy for years to come.
Minecraft allows your child to create structures from 3D blocks. Played in two modes (creative and survival) Minecraft is a formidable outlet for your child’s creativity. There is some potential for mild violence and interaction with others over a public server (an optional feature), so be sure to regulate the game and even monitor your child while playing. For other tips, check out these parent reviews of Minecraft from Common Sense Media.
Toontastic allows your child to create animated drawings. With Toontastic, your child can create 3D drawings and turn them into stories which they narrate through speech or song. Your child can even add their own photo to a character as they jump into the adventures they create!
5. Dr. Panda
Dr. Panda games include a variety of activities such as being a firefighter, driving a bus and serving at a restaurant. Each game has a unique task your child has to perform which teaches them skills such as time management and efficiency. Take a look at these summaries to find which Dr. Panda game is best for your child!
How to Foster Good Technology Habits
These are some of the best creative apps for kids which offer exciting new ways for your children to explore creativity. Plus, these apps offer the perfect opportunity to teach your children good technology habits:
Screen Time Rules
It’s easy for anyone to get caught up for hours in playing games on a phone however, so remember to set screen time rules to keep your little ones active. Check out the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry’s age-based guide for screen use to see some recommendations for your child’s age group.
Games Aren’t Babysitters
Don’t forget: while these creativity apps for kids are helpful and fun, they are not a replacement for real human interaction, so use them in moderation.
Make a Screen Time Schedule
To help your child learn that they can’t always play digital games, set a schedule for when they can play. If you keep the schedule consistent, it will help your child learn to not reach for the phone in every free second they have.
Fostering creativity in your children is so important. Not only will it help them develop life skills like problem solving, but it will help them maintain good mental health as they grow older. Use these apps to help your child foster creativity but also teach your children good technology habits so their tech use can facilitate instead of frustrate their growth. Take a look at Troomi if you’re interested in other tools and tips for teaching your child responsible tech use as you support your child in their journey to becoming a creative thinker!