iPhone apps gaining attention in role of educating kids

According to a recent CNET.com article, a PBS Kids study found mobile apps are a new source of learning. The findings reported that kids who played with educational iPhone apps, increased their vocabulary as much as 31 percent in two weeks. Kids in the study were playing with the PBS Kids app, Martha Speaks Dog Party ($2.99, iTunes).

“The Martha Speaks Dog Party app successfully extends our efforts to build oral vocabulary for four- to seven-year-olds, a core goal of Martha Speaks,” said WGBH Vice President of Children’s Media and Educational Programming Brigid Sullivan in a press release.
In the app, Martha Speaks features four different games. In the “Chow Time” game, kids build vocabulary by helping dogs clean their plates, identifying different shapes, patterns, colors and objects. Martha, the talking dog, explains what each word means. The app is based on the PBS Kids series Martha Speaks, about a beloved family dog who eats a bowl of alphabet soup and gains the power of human speech.
The study focused on a group of 90 Title One children ages three to seven. Each child played approximately 2.5 hours on the Martha Speaks app across the two week study period of five hours total time spent on the iPod Touch. The app was played with 11 times, and was self initiated time, not prescribed.
I just downloaded Martha Speaks for the iPhone and will report any results.
Though the CNET.com article is about results with a specific app, I have indeed found this to be true in general with JD. After playing with Monkey Preschool Lunchbox from THUP games, JD was able to figure out the concept of big and small, puzzles and matching. This is quite impressive for a little guy who just turned two in April. (I’m a biased mother! LOL)
Regardless of which app your child uses, work with them. Any child will benefit from close time with their parents. The apps should not take place of quality time with your child, though they can be used during quality time.

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