A girl using a tablet

Use technology to motivate kids to keep learning over summer break

It goes without saying that screen time increases monumentally during the summer months. Especially in Arizona, with our triple-digit temperatures that make it unbearable to spend time outdoors!

Rather than feeling guilty about it, what about finding some good apps or websites that will benefit your child? Check out this list of apps and websites parents may find useful for keeping kids learning and growing this summer. 

1. IXL: This application is a school and teacher favorite since it aligns with teaching standards so greatly. If your child could use a refresher of their past grade level or would like to work ahead, this is a great resource. Not only that, but they are currently having a summer contest, Study in the Sun, where students can earn an iPad or gift card. Find out if your school has a paid subscription as it usually rolls over the summer. If not, there are options for family memberships.

2. Khan Academy Kids: This FREE app is targeted for students aged 2 to 8. The app is tailored to your child’s age and learning. They are also hosting a summer special, Camp Khan Kids. The camp runs through July with themed weeks, such as Dino Week, where kids will engage in activities that go with that week’s theme such as Dino Yoga and a Dinosaur Egg Hunt.

3. Duolingo: What better time to learn a new language than over summer break? Duolingo is a FREE interactive app that teaches 40+ languages. My advice is to choose one and stick to it for the whole family, rather than mix several languages. You can even have competitions to see who can get the furthest in learning!

4. Epic! Educators get FREE access to this app, which provides access to 40K+ kids’ books, audiobooks, videos and more. It’s so interactive and fun that students will spend hours reading and enjoying every minute. Families can do a free trial, and then choose a plan of $13.99 a month or $84.99 annually as of this posting date. 

5. PBS KIDS: Your child can watch, play and learn on this FREE app. Access games and videos bound to keep your child entertained while learning key skills. There is even a whole section of summer games available to occupy their time. 

These are just five items I have found useful for my own children, as a teacher and mother. What are other learning apps and websites you recommend? Let us know at Arizona PBS KIDS on Facebook.


About the author

Marissa Will is the mother of two, Olivia (6) and Logan (4). Writing was her first passion: she’s a freelance writer and a Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication alumna. Will is currently educating the future leaders of tomorrow: She has spent the past nine years educating third grade with a master’s degree in elementary education from Northern Arizona University-Yuma.

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