Marcus doesn't spend a whole lot of time sitting still. In fact, he'd rather eat entire meals running wild instead of seated at our table (but we try to keep that to a minimum). And it comes as no surprise that Marcus would spend all day every day outside playing in puddles and dirt.

However, there is the rare occasion where the little man slows down. While he isn't all that interested in arts and crafts, or puzzles and such, he does enjoy swiping my iPhone or the iPad.

It took some trial and error, and lots of downloading (and then deleting) to find a few quality apps that keep Marcus entertained and are educational.

So today I thought I'd share our favorites:
1. Little Fox Music Box ($1.99)- part of the Fox and Sheep collection. Ages 1-5.
Between "Old Mac Donald" (Marcus' favorite), "London Bridge", and "Evening Song", there are over 100 interactive elements. Each time we open this up I feel like we discover something different. Then there is the music studio in the fox's tree house, where you can make and record your own music. There are times I think I may actually enjoy this app (particularly the music studio) more than the little man.
Old Mac Donald is Marcus' favorite of the three songs. Each season has a different layout that provides different elements of interaction. This is the first app Marcus usually goes to.
To incorporate more education to the app I will ask, "Where is the cow? Where is the horse? Where
are the flowers?" etc. 
2. Nighty Night ($1.99)- part of the Fox and Sheep collection. Ages 1-4. 
This is very similar to Little Fox Music box. There is cute lullaby music and narration to guide us along as we go through the house to put each animal to sleep. After successfully putting the animals to bed the lights in the house go out.
This was also nominated as App of the Year by Apple.
The fish are our favorite. When you tap them they zoom about, causing some serious giggles in our house. 
3. Toddlers Seek and Find, My Little Town ('lite' version is free, full version is $1.99). Ages 1-5.
When we first downloaded this I thought Marcus would be instantly bored. It's not as bright and flashy as some other apps we've tried, but I was very surprised how well Marcus took to this. There are over 80 animations that keep my little guy busy.
The lite version has two morning scenes (shown on left and right). On the left, Marcus loves to make the bear play the piano (middle left picture), and the train run (middle right picture). On the right, Marcus loves to watch the helicopter fly about the screen. To add in some educational components I will ask, "Where is the clock? Where is the sun?" etc.
4. Tiny Hands Educational Towers ($1.99). Ages +1.5 years.
We just discovered this app thanks to Sally and Mace! Marcus has been enamored with it.
It's puzzle after puzzle, increasing in difficulty. This is teaching Marcus before and after, big versus small, top versus bottom. This has become an instant hit in our house.
The bright colors and fun designs keep us busy for minutes!
5. Kids Trucks: Puzzles ('lite' version is free, full version is $1.99). Ages 1-6. 
It's trucks! That's about all I needed to download for Marcus to make him happy. To make me happy these are puzzles that gradually get more difficult as you go. Once each puzzle is successfully completed 'bubbles' appear on the screen and are fun to 'pop.'
The puzzle pieces are located on the left. The bubbles appear after successful completion.
Let's have an honest moment - these are similar to the wooden puzzles, without the hassle of actual wooden pieces all over the place, getting lost, or stepping on those painful little red pegs. Win-win!
These are our go-tos when mommy just needs to sit down for a minute we need a change of pace from our regular go-go-go sprint. 

Share some of your favorite apps! We have a few long trips coming up, and we are always searching for ways to keep Marcus sitting still for multiple hours on end. 


  1. Drew LOVES those seek and finds now! We got him the Leap Frog Mr. Pencil for xmas and have been doing tons of tracing apps with letters and numbers. I'll give you more deets once Marcus is a bit older, but they are GREAT for learning to write letters/numbers!

  2. These are great! Thanks so much for sharing these Desiree.

  3. Thanks for this post. We are always looking for new apps. The only one Olivia seems to like is the disney jr appisodes.

  4. I will certainly have to look into these apps! Marissa is loving all the memory/matching games right now!

  5. I must be mean.... I only get apps for my kids that are free. But then again I let them watch hours upon hours of TV, while I am busy with my pinning addiction

  6. We LOVE the trucks onet!! OMG Mace is obsessed!!

    And the towers and matching ones by Tiny Hands.....dear God how many times can we play those.

    Now I gotta get the others you suggested!

  7. Ohh we will have to try some of these! Arden loves her some "hi-pad" ;) Thanks for sharing!

  8. I'm so glad you shared these! I've been meaning to download some apps for Clay now that he's older. Right now he's just obsessed with Talking Tom and some dancing robot...thanks Grandma. Haha

  9. Totally book marking this! Need to get Callie some "new" apps for her road trip with dad! We have the towers ones and she really likes it. The trucks look really fun too. Thanks for the great review!

  10. I'm pinning to check these out. I need to get some new ones for Myles and he loves and animals and trucks.