It may be summer, but there’s no better time to help jump start or sharpen your child’s bilingual language skills than during school vacation. And while bilingual education apps may be a far cry from traditional work books or flash cards, appealing to kids’ love of “cool” gadgets is a great way to get them excited about learning.
To help you get started, here are seven stellar applications for your iPad, iPhone and iPod touch that make language learning easy and fun.
Desert Spanish for Kids
This iPhone app is the branded as the “Rosetta Stone” for the pre-k set, and is loaded with hundreds of Spanish words with fun pictures, games and quizzes. The app has earned high praise from native Spanish- and non-Spanish-speaking parents alike with its use of spaced repetition and learning by engagement.
Hello-Hello Spanish for iPad
This free iPad app targets Spanish vocabulary for older kids, with the option of purchasing a complete Spanish language course. An added bonus? The app has an online feature that children can use on the go – no connectivity needed.
Free Spanish Tutor
Forget the dog-eared flash cards, because this free interactive iPad app features digital flash cards, puzzles and quizzes to help reinforce Spanish language learning in an intuitive, no-gimmicks-necessary way.
My Bilingual Baby
This app exposes children so the sounds of Spanish language through interactive letter/phrase games that help with language pronunciation and letter recognition. Using teaching methods developed by a speech therapist, it’s available for $2.99 through iTunes.
Research shows that children as young as two can pick up language skills naturally as their brain develops, and iPhone/iPod touch apps like “Toddler Time” help reinforce language development with kid-friendly graphics and games that introduce colors, numbers, zoo animals, y mas.
El Mejor Ahorcado
The kid-friendly game of Hangman goes bilingual in this 99 cent app for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad that’s great for all ages.
Spanish Kids – Speak and Learn Pro
Great for middle-school-aged kids and AP Spanish test takers alike, this app pairs the voices of native Spanish speakers with high-quality graphics to boost vocabulary skills.