Parents frequently ask which apps are best to promote learning of vocabulary, ABCs, colors, and other important concepts at home. As a general rule, apps should not replace playing with toys, reading and exploring books, and social play with peers because learning through real life experiences is invaluable for a child. However, apps can act as supplementary tools to reinforce learned concepts.
Learning through apps can be beneficial when interaction and language is encouraged. When using digital media with your child, encourage interaction by sitting and talking with him/her while playing on the device. Add language to whatever you are seeing or playing by talking about what you are doing as you would when playing with toys, playing games, or reading books. Point out vocabulary pictures, ask questions, sing songs, and encourage asking questions as you use the device together.
Although playing with apps and devices is enjoyable for children, it is encouraged to limit your child’s daily screen time. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends limiting screen time to no more than 1 hour per day for children 2-5 years old. For children 6 and older, parents can determine the restrictions for screen time as well as monitor the types of digital media they use. For children 18 months and younger, the AAP recommends they not be exposed to any digital media. Overuse of digital media may put your child at risk of not sleeping enough, being delayed in attention, thinking, language and social skills, and have obesity and behavior problems.
For a comprehensive list of educational speech and language apps please see the front desk. These are from the OMazing Kids website, a website that frequently reviews learning apps for children. Enjoy experiencing digital media with your child!
By: Oceanside Therapy Group’s Speech/Language Department
Healthy Digital Media Use Habits for Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers. (Copyright © 2016 American Academy of Pediatrics). Healthychildren.org. Retrieved April 27, 2017, from https://www.healthychildren.org/English/family-life/Media/Pages/Healthy-Digital-Media-Use-Habits-for-Babies-Toddlers-Preschoolers.aspx
The iPad & the SLP in 2017. (2017, February 26th). OMazing Kids. Retrieved April 26, 2017, from https://omazingkidsllc.com/2016/12/31/the-ipad-the-slp-in-2017-app-list-for-slps-sorted-by-goal-area/amp/