If you're looking for some of the best apps for toddlers in 2021 then you'll love this collection. These apps have been tested by myself (teacher and mother) and approved by my toddlers. They are apps that I would happily let my own toddlers play (in small, supervised sessions of course) and that I highly recommend.
Best Apps for Toddlers 2021
This post has been updated to include the best apps for toddlers 2021.
Are you looking for the best apps for toddlers? We have found some of the best toddler apps - all tested on my very own toddlers! I'm also an early years teacher so these apps get the educational tick of approval as well.
I don't advocate letting your toddler spend a lot of time playing apps on tablets and phones, but as an educator and parent, I can definitely see the value in supervised play with some of the fantastic educational apps that are available. The biggest problem is finding the best apps for toddlers among the thousands, if not millions of toddler apps out there.
After being overwhelmed with the options available (a large percentage of which were low quality, filled with ads or had very little educational value), I recently asked for YOUR favorite toddler apps in our Facebook group and have included many of those in this list.
There were several apps that were recommended many times, along with some great new suggestions. After having a closer look at your recommendations I have compiled a list of Apps your toddler will love!
You will notice that the list contains a mix of free and paid apps. While I could have focused on only the free apps, I feel that there are some excellent toddler apps that are worth paying a few dollars for (especially if it means no ads and excellent content).
If you are looking for only free apps I have put together a list of the best FREE ipad apps for toddlers. Please be wary of the free toddler apps as I've found that the developers of many of them (not the ones I've listed) are very sneaky with their ad placement and it's really easy for your toddler to download all kinds of things. Sometimes it's worth the dollar or two to avoid that.
What tablet is best for a toddler?
If you're worried about your toddler dropping or breaking your own phone or tablet (I've had that happen to me!) then it can be worthwhile buying them their own one. While this seems a bit extravagant I've found that it's much better than letting them drop your $600 tablet. The tablets for the kids don't need to be anywhere near as powerful as your own one either as you're not running many programs on it.
My recommendation for a tablet for your toddler is the Amazon Fire HD Kids Edition tablet which you can get HERE.
Some of the main reasons that I recommend this tablet for toddlers is:
- It comes with a kid proof case (and in a variety of colors)
- They give you a 2 year guarantee - if your kids break it, Amazon will replace it
- It comes with a free year of Amazon Kids + (kid friendly apps and ebooks). You can find out more about Amazon Free Time Unlimited and get a free trial HERE.
You might also want to look into headphones as well. I really like the volume limiting ones (for obvious reasons!). I really like these ones.
Teacher recommended apps for toddlers
ABC Reading eggs has a Junior program that is fantastic for 2-4 year olds and you can use it on your computer or via the apps as well.
Get your 30 day free trial HERE.
This app is part of an online learning package that is extremely popular with early years teachers and you will find it used in lots of preschools and kindergartens. The program caters for children from 2 years of age and can be played on a desktop computer and via the app. Whilst this is a paid program they do offer a 30 day free trial which I highly recommend.
I am a member of many parenting and teaching groups and this program is one that is consistently recommended for early learning. You can start your free trial HERE.
When our local library closed this year we tried ReadingIQ - an easy to use app that has a great range of award winning children's books. They call it the Netflix of children's books!
You can test out ReadingIQ with a 30 day free trial HERE.
PBS Kids - FREE
This completely free app allows your toddler to view all of their favorite PBS shows in a really easy, child friendly app, and was the app that was recommended the most by our readers. Sesame Street, Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood and Dinosaur Train are just a few of the great kids shows that can be streamed.
They also include weekly video features focusing on an educational topic, and have a great parent control panel which allows you to add particular shows to your toddler's favorite list. For a free app, you can't really go wrong this one.
ABC Kids Iview - FREE
Similar to the PBS Kids app, the ABC for Kids app is the Australian equivalent. It was also the most recommended app from our Australian readers. I have a feeling it can only be downloaded in Australia and New Zealand, but if you are outside of these countries and can access it please let me know. This app lets you stream all of the great ABC for Kids content including The Wiggles, Play School, Peppa Pig, Mister Maker and Sesame Street. You can also listen to some great ABC for Kids music, and it's all FREE!
Download iTunes or Android
Monkey Preschool Lunchbox
Download iTunes or Download Android
This app is my absolute favorite educational app for toddlers. It is a fun and easy to use toddler app that teaches basic literacy and mathematics. You can read my full review of this app here and I highly recommend it.
Peekaboo Barn (lite version is free)
This toddler app was also a very popular one, and there are many different versions of this great app available. It's a simple but fun app that is great for younger toddlers who want to learn about farm animals. The app focuses on the animal names and the sounds that the animals make. You can download the Lite Version for free to get a feel for the app, however the full version is definitely worth spending a few dollars for.
Nighty Night - FREE
This is a great app to add to your evening routine. We don't use it every night, but it's always a favorite when we do. I really love this toddler app, and you can read an in depth review of it here.
Trucks - FREE
Trucks is one of the great apps from Duck Duck Moose. Their range of apps is fantastic and previously were paid apps. They have recently partnered up with a non profit company to provide quality educational apps free of charge. While I highly recommend this app for the toddler age group, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend any of their apps. Between my toddler and my 5 year old we have played almost all of them and they are all great.
Potty Time with Elmo
Lots of recommendations for this one, and who could blame them. If it helps the potty training battle then it's worth a few dollars in my opinion. Featuring Elmo (obviously) there are songs, activities and an interactive potty chart. If you're at the potty training stage with your toddler then this app is definitely worth a look.
Download iTunes or Download Android
If your toddler loves trucks then this is the app for them. You can drive the trucks, build the houses, pour the cement and so much more. A great app for the older toddler (recommended for ages 2+). This is from the award winning Fox & Sheep app designers and so far I have loved everyone of their apps.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Play & Explore
If your toddler loves The Very Hungry Caterpillar book then they will love the app too. With the beautiful images that you would expect from Eric Carle, this app is a fantastic first app for toddlers. Using the familiar images from Eric Carle's books, early learning skills are taught in a simple and fun manner. You can download a demo for free, but there is a fee for the full version of the app (highly recommended).
Disney Mickey Mouse Club House Color and Play
This app was the winner of the 2013 National Parenting Publications Award. With the quality that you would expect from a Disney product, this app is a fantastic painting app, using a combination of 2D, 3D and music. I guarantee that this one will keep your toddler engaged for quite some time.
Scribbaloo Train is my youngest toddler's new favourite. She is 16 months and has already mastered this one. It's a really lovely app and one of my favorites too! You can read my full review here.
Milli the Snail
Milli the Snail is a beautiful interactive story book for children. The illustrations are beautiful, and the story is lovely. You can read my full review here.
Owl and Pals
This was one of my daughter's favorite apps when she was 2. Parental help is needed with this one, however I credit this app with helping my daughter with her letter and number recognition. This ap is normally around 99c.
Look and Find Elmo on Sesame Street
Another app from Sesame Productions is the Look and find Elmo app. Great for encouraging memory and observation, and it stars Elmo! What more could you want in a toddler app!
Nampa Forest is a beautifully illustrated app filled with lovable characters and lots of disco dancing. There are no scores and no winners and it's a great app. You can read my full review of Nampa Forest here.
Lego Duplo Train
It's Lego, it's Duplo, it's trains and it's free. What more do you need! This app is lots of fun for the little ones. They can make their own train tracks, drive the train, load the wagons and build the bridges - so much fun!
Daniel Tiger's Grr-iffic feelings
There's a reason that this app was a 2015 Parent's Choice Foundation Gold Award Winner. The app focuses on dealing with feeling and emotions in a fun and entertaining manner. This is another paid app, but well worth it. There are very few apps dealing with this issue well, and this one is definitely worth the investment.
Nighty Night Circus
This is the sequel to the Nighty Night app mentioned earlier. If you've played the Nighty Night app you'll be rushing to download the circus version. It's just as good, but with new animals! Love it!
Monkey Preschool Fix It
This app is by the makers of the Monkey Preschool app reviewed earlier. In this app there are lots of things to fix and problems to solve and it's perfect for ages 2 and up. Lots of rewards and praise in the app too!
We will be sharing more great toddler apps soon. We are always reviewing new apps. f you have an app that you love please let us know in our Facebook Group.
If you are looking for free iPad apps for toddlers you can find some great ones HERE.