We've got eight kids ranging in age from high school down to toddler and they each have their own Kindle Fire tablet. Today, I'm sharing what we've discovered to be the best Kindle Fire kids apps!
Best Kindle Fire Kids Apps
This post is a full disclosure. I didn't skip any categories. Yes, there are some plain old "video games" on this list because, well, that's part of how we use and enjoy our tablets! I didn't want to "sanitize" the list to pretend that we are strictly "educational" with the tablets. Why should we be? Tablets are tools. We embrace all of the benefits and I'm going to be upfront about that.
Just a side note - if the thought of screen time gives you hives or if allowing your children on devices makes you feel like a bad mom, you might want to check some of these resources first:
- Article: 10 Reasons Why Homeschool Parents are Afraid of Screen Time
- Article: Is Digital Dangerous? 3 Common Concerns
- Podcast Episodes: Siblings and Screen Time - Part 1 and Part 2
Some of these apps were free when we originally downloaded them. Some were paid. Also, free and paid apps on Amazon change frequently. Please use your own discretion about which apps are worth paying for and which are best to try only if they are free.
Kindle Fire Kids Apps for Learning to Read
Letter Sounds A to Z and Phonogram Sounds are Kindle Fire apps from All About Reading. You can use these to help your child learn basic letter and phonogram sounds no matter what reading program you use. If you're also using the All About Reading or All About Spelling Curriculum then I highly recommend the Letter Tiles for Learning app, which is way less sanity-stressing than keeping up with a bunch of magnetic letter tiles! (Works better on a Kindle Fire 8 or above, but is manageable on the Kindle Fire 7.)
Duck Duck Moose Reading Duck Duck Moose recently joined forces with Khan Academy to offer free learning opportunities to kiddos who are too little for the Khan format. Drag and drop letter and sound recognition, bright colors, fun interactions.
Starfall is a free app with tons of language and math content, but about 70-80% of the activities are only available via subscription. However, we've never subscribed and my littles have still enjoyed the free content they were able to access. (Note: If you quickly tire of hearing the same songs over and over, either skip it or plan to subscribe!)
Math Games for Kindle Fire
Elmo Loves 123s is hosted by Sesame Street characters Elmo and Abby Cadabby, little learners explore one number at a time. For each number, children trace the number and watch a little animation about it (throw-backs to some of your favorite Sesame Street segments). Then they have access to coloring pages, games, puzzles and other activities about that number.
Fish School is another winner from Duck Duck Moose that covers language and math skills. Kids can rotate through a variety of activities about each letter or number. The interface is simple and intuitive even for pre-readers!
Moose Math is another hit from Duck Duck Moose. Help build Moose Town! Each building you add has another fun activity to practice counting and math skills. My favorite is "Moose Juice" - a little juice hut where you have to add the appropriate number of fresh ingredients to your blender, then blend and serve smoothies!
Numbers and Counting offers three games to choose from: "Groups," "Numbers & Groups," and "Numbers" in which your kids can practice matching-card style pairing groups of same-numbered objects or numbers and objects.
Pet Bingo is another great title from Duck Duck Moose. Practice basic addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts by choosing the correct answer from a bingo card. Win Bingo to earn and care for your pets!
Fruit Ninja Academy: Math Master includes the same fabulous slicing and swiping action as the original (listed under games below). The main difference is that effective slicing is based on math knowledge: slice a certain number of fruits, slice a certain fraction, slice the answer to an addition problem - good fun!
Kindle Fire Word Games
Alpha Betty Saga is a virtual version of Boggle - letter tiles are arranged in a grid. Swipe from one letter to the next connecting adjacent tiles in a string to make words. When the tiles included in the word disappear, new letters fall into the puzzle. The grids get more complex (non-rectangular) and bonus letters appear for extra points.
Word Search Pro - This is really just a digital version of the age-old, tried-and-true word search! Find words from the word bank in the puzzle and drag your finger across the letters to highlight them. Conveniently, the words in the bank at the bottom disappear as you find them. You can also choose "blitz" mode - find as many words as you can in a limited time.
Words with Friends is the familiar app you may have played on Facebook. It's very similar to two-player Scrabble. In order to play, users need an account with an email address. There is a messaging function within the game where players can text each other, so I don't allow my kids to accept game requests from strangers. (There isn't a way to block or turn this off in the app, so it would need to be something you could trust your child to refrain from using, if that's what you wanted them to do.)
Reading and Audiobook Apps
Audible is one of the main reasons we got the kids Kindles - so that the kids could independently enjoy the audible audiobooks that I had purchased for them. This app comes already installed on your Kindle Fire tablet.
You can use this app regardless of whether or not you have an Audible membership. However, membership is only $14.95 a month and includes one credit for a free audiobook.
Best bang for your buck is to grab some high-dollar titles - like this one or this one - with your credit and save the lower cost ones for out-of-pocket. Members also receive 30% off on any additional purchases.
Kindle, an ereader app, is also already installed on your Kindle fire. One of the things I love about the Audible/Kindle combination is "Whispersync Technology" - if you own the Kindle and Audible version of a book, you can listen to the Audible version while the Kindle app highlights line-by-line for you.
This is a fantastic way to help young readers make the connection between print and spoken words. It's also allows you to switch conveniently between listening and reading depending on which is more useful in any given setting.
Overdrive allows you to borrow ebooks and audiobooks using your library card if your local library subscribes to the service. Some of the titles you can borrow are actually Kindle Books and Audible audiobooks, so you can listen via those apps while oyu have the title on loan!
Games and Puzzles for the Kindle Fire
Minecraft Pocket Edition is a version of the popular game designed for moble devices. If you haven't tried Minecraft with your family let me encourage you to give it a go. It's almost like virtual Legos - building worlds out of regular-sized blocks.
My kids can play in each other's worlds (up to 5 people in one world) just by being on the same Wifi network - no need to log into unknown servers out there on the net. And via the Android version of MPE on my tablet, I can join them, too!
Skinseed Pro is an app that works well as a companion to Minecraft. It allows players to design their own skins (i.e. how the player figure looks, what he wears, etc.) and then import that skin into the Minecraft app and play as that character. My son used this app to design skins for himself and me for our Minecraft date!
Can You Escape is a virtual escape-room game! Solve puzzles, decipher codes, hunt for patterns and missing objects to open the door and move to the next level! Each game has ten levels. When you finish Can You Escape, try these sequels: Can You Escape 2, Can You Escape 3, Can You Escape - Tower, Can You Escape - Tower 2 by MobiGro and Empire Escape and Fantasy Escape by Trapped
Flow Free is one of my personal favorites. The concept is simple, but the execution can get pretty complex! You begin with a small grid and three or four pairs of colored dots. You must draw lines between each pair of same-colored dots. But you must also make sure that none of the lines cross each other AND none of the squares in the grid is left open. It's a great visual-spatial challenge! If you love it, you can also try Flow Free Bridges and Flow Free Hexes!
Fruit Ninja - Another game for happy swiping. Slice the fruit as it is tossed in the air. But be careful - don't let any of the fruit drop unsliced, and definitely don't slice a bomb by accident! Good performance can earn you extra blades and other powers-ups.
Jigsaw Puzzles Epic is a fun, virtual way to do jigsaw puzzles without the ninja toddler in your family making off with the pieces. The free version includes lots of puzzles. Purchase the upgrade to have access to more puzzles and even make puzzles out of your own images!
Mahjong Village game play is very similar to the non-virtual version of the game. Tiles are laid out in various patterns and/or stacked. The goal is to remove all tiles from the play board by tapping pairs of matching tiles. However, some tiles which are covered or surrounded by other tiles are not available, so strategy and order of play are important!
Sudoku plays like the books you can pick up from the grocery store. One of the features I love about virtual Sudoku are the opportunities to "undo" and use "draft mode" (i.e. fill in a square with a tentative guess, reminding yourself that it's subject to change if you find later that it causes a conflict.
Kindle Fire Video Apps and Other Fun
Safe Vision is a YouTube curating app. You can use a free version in which the creators choose kid-friendly channels and you can add a few others. However, I pay for the annual membership which allows me to unlock the specific channels and videos I want the kids to see. If they request to have something added, it's super easy to do that from my app or from the web version.
Messenger Kids is a Facebook product that allows me to choose specific people with whom my kids can chat via Facebook Messenger. I can see all of their chats and I have to approve any contacts. This has been an awesome way for me to keep in touch with my older kids (who do not yet have cell phones) when they are out at their activities. It's also allowed my girls to video chat with a friend who moved across the country.
BrainPOP Featured Movie shows some free movies from the paid membership site BrainPOP.com. is a paid membership site - all of their free videos, plus one new member-only video daily. If you subscribe, you can then use this app to watch all of their videos. Also try BrainPOP Jr. Movie of the Week (a different movie every week) and those who prefer Spanish can get BrainPOP Pelicula del Dia. In addition to the videos, you also have access to the corresponding quizzes.
Explore Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood - I love this interactive app. Even my two-year-old has lots of fun going to the park and into different buildings in town. Each location has areas you can tap on to discover things, hear sounds, or see animation.
Daniel Tiger's Grr-iffic Feelings - If your preschoolers are in love with Daniel Tiger's songs about feelings, this is a great app. It's essentially just the music and animation for each of his catchy tunes. On the other hand, if you find those songs annoying, this is not the app you want on continual replay!
Other Helpful Kindle Fire Apps for Kids
Chore Monster is an app that assigns and tracks chores for each child. When they complete chores, the earn points towards parent-created rewards. Each completed chore is also worth one ticket for in-app monster purchases! If you use Circle by Disney, you can integrate internet privileges with Chore Monster.
Multi-Stopwatch and Timer - This has been great for helping kids to keep track of time and stay focused to complete a job or assignment in a specific period of time. Because it's a multi-timer, they could track laundry in the dryer while also timing silent reading! (I also have a Multi-Timer app on my Android tablet so I can track multiple kids' jobs or assignments.)
Drawing for Kids is fun for artwork and includes a variety of tools from backgrounds, patterns, and stamps to various drawing tools like markers, paints and pencils. This tool has been especially useful, however, has digital scrap paper. The kids work out math problems on it!
Bible Memory: Remember Me - You can choose from pre-loaded verses or enter your own. Then use a variety of activities to test your memory. Cover more words each time. Give you only the first letter of a word. Have you fill in the verse word by word using a word bank. Test yourself flash-card style. You can even archive verses for review later!
What are some of your family's favorite Kindle Fire Kids Apps?