Anyone who has read my book (thank you!) Raising Digital Families For Dummies knows that I advocate for limited screen time for kids. I also suggest often that parents follow the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations regarding screen time limits and age restrictions. The key to making digital time work for your family is finding the apps, websites, and devices that make the most sense for your kids’ enjoyment and well-being. Yes, this may mean taking the phone away from them in restaurants so that they’re not flinging birds mindlessly for 20 minutes and instead locating educational apps that serve a purpose beyond entertainment. And as a busy parent, yes this may take some extra time and thought in what is already a hectic schedule.
While I outline several education websites that you may want to check out, the reality is that technology is always changing. Just announced this week, Sylvan Learning introduced SylvanPlay – a comprehensive, educational mobile games network for kids in 1st through 4th grade. The goal of SylvanPlay is to provide the best collection of educational games that reinforce grade-appropriate lessons in fun and engaging ways and enhance what kids are already learning in the classroom while on-the-go.
My kids ask for screen time daily. Their teachers suggest that we find educational apps and sites. SylvanPlay meets both requests!
Rather than just one individual app, SylvanPlay is launching this week with a library of eight fun, Sylvan-approved edutainment apps all packaged together in one network. The games, which have been developed to help students build critical skills in reading, math, science, geography, strategic thinking and more, include:
- Critter Cruise (ages 6 – 9): Inspires math and language learning as kids take a landmark filled road trip across North America, filling up their gas tank by correctly answering questions. This game was developed exclusively for SylvanPlay and aligns to specific grade level content and the Common Core curriculum.
- Battle Station (ages 6 – 9): Helps kids improve number sense as they defend their ship from enemy submarines by estimating their location using marker buoys. Will be an exclusive SylvanPlay launch.
- Equator (ages 6 – 9, tablet only): Challenges kids to collaborate to bring balance to the equator by testing their math skills including addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and order of operations as they play through four seasons: Summer, Fall, Winter, and Spring. Will be an exclusive SylvanPlay launch.
- Angle Asteroids (ages 6 – 9): Helps kids develop an intuition for angles as they position their laser to blast away the incoming asteroids. Will be an exclusive SylvanPlay launch.
- Pizza Party (ages 6 – 9): Helps kids master fractions by splitting up the treats at a pizza party with fun tools like the Slice-o-matic. Will be an exclusive SylvanPlay launch.
- Sushi Scramble (ages 6 – 9, tablet only): Develops language skills through a multiplayer word-building game where 2 to 4 players collaborate or compete to “serve” up the most words or longest word.
- Get Rocky (ages 6 – 9): Inspires an interest in science through a geology-based racing game that takes kids to the core of the earth.
- Not Lost in the Universe (ages 6 – 9, tablet only): Kids learn about how wind, the sun, water, and heat create lasting sources of energy while helping the brave explorers on the Planet Blarp refuel their power cells.
- Wonder Bunny Math Race (ages 3 – 8): Helps younger kids ages 3-8 learn numbers, counting, addition and subtraction as they help Wonder Bunny win the race and collect carrots along the way.
With kids currently in grades two and four, the apps currently available are a better fit for my younger child, but I’m looking forward to seeing where SylvanPlay takes this new network. Their plan is that the SylvanPlay network will continue to expand on an on-going basis and the content range will soon be available for kids up to 6th grade. Additional edutainment apps and subjects will inspire more kids to play anywhere and learn everywhere in new and engaging ways.
If you’re interested, SylvanPlay is available for both iOS and Android operating systems and offers an assortment of free and paid content ranging from $.99 to $4.99 To download to any mobile device, parents can type in “SylvanPlay” or any of the app titles into the search function of either the Apple App store or Android’s GooglePlay store to locate the educational mobile games network. All apps within the SylvanPlay network are free for current Sylvan Learning customers.
For more information on SylvanPlay and Sylvan Learning log on to http://www.SylvanLearning.com/resources/SylvanPlay or www.SylvanLearning.com.
This post was written in conjunction with a sponsored post campaign. All opinions are my own.