This post brought to you by Megan Gilligan and Katherine Sutton of AppCertain.
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How can we use technology like iPad apps to stimulate kids’ creativity and encourage it? There are many apps that enlist a child’s creative thinking while they use them. Here are our top five picks for apps that encourage kids to be creative on their own, not just in the digital world of a mobile device!
This is an awesome app that lets you color in different shape templates on your iPad. The unique part of this app is the feature that allows you to print your custom design on a regular sheet of paper, cut it out, and construct a real life object that you designed on your iPad.
Enjoy a wide selection of arts and crafts activities that clearly state the goals and outcomes for the children. It is very helpful that each activity includes an organized list of materials available for purchase and needed to complete each project. You can browse by new activities, gift ideas and seasonal crafts. Visit often since new activities are constantly being added!
Dorling Kindersley’s Kids’ Crafts
The New York Times featured this app in their App Smart section. It is based on DK’s award-winning activity books and contains three interactive activities for the iPad along with hands-on tasks allowing access to knitting, sewing, and drawing off the screen. It strikes the perfect balance between quick-fix fun and games while inspiring children to get creative at home.
Scrap bags: Design your own scrap bag on-screen or use it to try out a new design that you can create in the real world!
Cross-stitch: Tap on a pattern, your choice of yarn, and a type of stitch to start creating. You can even use a blank canvas to design your own cross-stitch from scratch.
How-to off-screen activities:
Pirate Pete: Make your own pirate friend who’s full of beans!
Rainy day doodles: You won’t believe what you can do with a doodle! This activity shows you all the different types of patterns you can make with a set of felt tip pens.
Fun drawing app for smaller children with unique animation features. You simply pick a scene (there are 12 ready-made scenes + blank canvas + an option to choose a picture from the device). Then listen to the instructions (the goal is to draw squiggles complementing the picture, e.g. add ‘squiggly’ wool to the sheep or waves in the sea). Just press the go button to see a simple animation involving the objects in the scene and the user-made squiggles (e.g. spaghetti swirling on the plate).
The app also includes a short animated movie with the main characters and a mini book with simple interactive elements. The bonus points include excellent concept, great graphics, easy operation, spoken and visual instructions. The painting tools are excellent and easy to use. There is also an option to save and share the pictures.
Martha Stewart Craft Studio
The app comes with four themed bundles: Everyday, Birthday Party, Doily Lace, and Nature. You can add on to the fun by purchasing bundles of punches, papers, stickers, and glitter, featuring seasonal and occasional motifs: Elegant Celebrations, Spring, Outdoors, Vacation Adventure, and Summer Fun.
This easy-to-use app allows you to personalize cards, invitations, thank-you notes, scrapbook pages, keepsake, and more. Browse through an array of colored and patterned “paper” backgrounds, import your own photos, and embellish your work with an abundance of stickers, stamps, glitter, textured borders, fonts, and punches. Tap to share your works of art with family and friends. So versatile, it’s the only digital crafting tool you’ll need!