Kid’s brains are like little sponges, which is why experts say it is most effective to expose them to a second language as soon as you can. Ideally they will learn best if the language is spoken at home, but there are other ways to teach them.
Here are 7 iPad apps that will help your children – and maybe even you – learn a second language.
Little Pim is a French panda and he will help your little one develop French speaking skills. This app includes 60 French words and phrases covering eating, drinking, playing, sharing, sleeping and waking. There are 3 games – Eating & Drinking, Playtime, and Wake Up Smiling. Each game has 3 levels, which teach nouns, verbs and phrases. Little Pim also has a DVD series and both the app and DVD were developed in partnership with PBS. $2.99. Download it here.
This animated-enriched app is designed to teach children numbers in 7 languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese, and Portuguese. The app features flashcards, fun characters and sounds, all used to teach numbers 1-20 in each language. There is a quiz that the child listens to and then chooses the correct number. Adorable and colorful graphics. $2.99. Download it here.
This is another app that will teach your child 7 languages. Bilingual Baby Flash Cards features English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Italian and Japanese. Parents can choose the language and have the option to change at any time. The app consists of packs of flash cards that teach animals and food. The first animal pack is free, but the second animal pack and the food packs are $1.99 each. At the end of each pack, there is a quiz to test what your child has learned. Free with in-app purchases. Download it here.
Your child can learn English, Chinese, Spanish, French, Japanese, Hindi, and Russian with this app. It consists of 50 different objects that the child is shown, sometimes there are a few different pictures for each object. There are 3 activities – Learn the Word, Find the Word, and Say the Word. Parents can choose to have a cute animation appear when the child answers a question correctly. The developers say this app is very good for children with delayed speech and autism. Download it here.
Teach your little genius Italian with this app. It will show them the names of 8 different animals in 5 sections. The sections consist of Touch the Animal, 2 Quizes, which identify the animal in Italian and find the animal by name, Free Style, where you shake your device to hear animal voices, and lastly a video with a nursery rhyme. Only section 1 is free and the rest are available for purchase. This app is designed for kids up to 3 years old. Free with in-app purchase of $1.99. Download it here.
For children ages 1-4, Toddler Flashcards teaches English, Spanish, French and Chinese. Kids will learn animals, foods, the alphabet, numbers and colors using talking flashcards. The cards also play animal sounds. The app is simple to use; the parent or child can select a set of cards and then the child can easily go through the cards on their own. The iPad version of this app includes a Toddler Animal Game. $1.99. Download it here.
This app was developed by a native Spanish speaker who wanted to essentially make a Rosetta Stone for little children who could not read. Over 120 words and sentences are featured and there are fun graphics to keep your child’s attention. There are 8 different categories of content and two different modes. The Learning Mode teaches basic vocabulary and the Quiz Mode is designed to have your child speaking sooner. The developer promises that it is a fun, easy way to introduce your child to Spanish. $1.99. Download it here.