Nowadays even a toddler makes the first steps with a gadget in his hands. In this era, kids are exposed to digital technologies throughout heir whole lives. And the important thing here is to expose the right things to your kid. Though there is no going back, technology and digital platforms will continue to take on even more significant roles in our lives. So why don’t we use digitalization to engage young learners and create a digital solution for education?
Why consider developing an education app for kids
Educational apps help kids not only to earn joy but also to develop brains by learning. In this way, children acquire the skills they need to perform their everyday tasks and future job duties. Educational apps can also spark the interest of youngsters in topics they might otherwise find boring. Since COVID-19 struck each country and each continent, online learning made a hit. In the US, the growth rate of education app downloads was higher than the global rate of 135%. Educational apps for kids are becoming more popular day after day. If you are considering the possible advantages of educational apps, here are the main ones:
- Flexibility. By developing an educational app, you provide children the space to study subjects they want without any time frames.
- Modernity. Kids like spending time on gadgets, but do not like studying. You can convert boring activities into interactive activities creating a unique space for development.
- Efficiency. Educational app development expands opportunities to obtain knowledge in a more effective and quality way. Young learners gain knowledge while playing not even realizing that they are studying at the same time.
- Saving. With an educational app, you save time and money at least on the road to the kids’ special school/courses.
- Self-paced learning. An educational app for learning provides statistics on the achievement dynamics for parents and rewards for their kids.
Today parents are looking for apps that take children through an innovative process of learning different things, so creating an educational app for kids is always a good idea.
Types of educational apps for children
According to the statistics, educational mobile apps are the third most frequently downloaded applications on mobile phones with the current rate of 8.67%. The educational app market is full of amazing and unique applications. Completing math drills, reviewing grammar skills, or playing puzzle games can be really fun with advantages. So what are the most common types of available educational apps?
1. Playful Learning
These are fun to play, easy to understand, and the most joyful applications. The educational content doesn’t take the center role here. Play is a primary mode of learning for most young children. These apps mirror the free play a child enjoys at home, such as pretending in the kitchen, driving trucks, building with blocks, or playing dress-up. These educational apps are for great kids because they encourage creativity and lead to more creative playful experiences away from the app. Also, they are useful for the development of logic and critical thinking.
eBooks can support beginning readers and children who struggle to read independently. These kids can listen to the narration while they follow the words. They can also use interactive features to better understand stories. It is always exciting to find stories that use interactivity to connect learning experiences and vocabulary to real life.
These apps usually generate a question and ask the child to choose among three or four options. Often kids should do connections in patterns or practice with the operations they used to do on the sheets of paper.
Puzzles have the potential to support one’s cognitive development, improve focus and concentration, foster creative thinking, and teach children patience. They can also help kids with pattern recognition, memory, and both gross and fine motor skills.
These apps let children delve into themes that are truly of their interest. If a child can’t have enough dinosaurs, why not grab a dinosaur app? Simulators help kids to get to know the world, increasing their curiosity and imagination.
6. Interactive Encyclopedias
This kind of app includes videos, images, and interactive activities. It lets youngsters explore, discover and research. The initial days of learning are full of curiosity, and that curiosity may be satisfied only if you give the right answers. Interactive encyclopedias are more fun to investigate since it is not just paper and pictures.
7. BYOC – Build Your Own Content
These educational apps are less game-like in terms of structure and have more of an open design that allows children to create their own unique activities from scratch. It encourages creativity, experimenting, and learning. Kids can use their imagination and create something that is not cliched and framed.
These are the most common types of educational apps developed. But still, there is enough space for further creativity on the app market.
How to develop an educational game for kids: key steps
Launching an educational app is not drastically different from the development of ther applications. Here are a few key steps to develop educational apps.
1. Educational app idea
Think about an original idea for the app to differentiate your product from the competitors. The great idea is already half of success. Choose several most interesting concepts with different functions. Then narrow it down to the one that is going to be a real success.
2. Market research
Make sure that your idea is unique or has more prerogatives than the existing ones. Check what makes users engaged with educational apps and what pushes them away. Your task here is to catch users’ attention to examine the market closely.
3. Target Audience
Test your idea on a target audience – kids or parents. Ask them what educational applications they are interested in and whether the kids love your idea. You may also prepare a list of questions for the test group and compare the answers. For example:
- What features of the educational app are essential for you?
- How do you see the design of our app?
- What colors should we use to catch kids’ attention?
- Would you use the app if it were paid?
- Would you prefer the paid version if you frankly liked the app?
- What would you rather skip in the educational applications for kids?
4. Hire an education app development company
Choose a leading mobile app development company that provides educational app development services. Note that the development process will include the following steps:
- UI/UX design
- prototyping/ MVP
- development stage
A big advantage of an educational app over other types is that they are not dependent on the device hardware. It doesn’t have to interact with the internal device, which saves time for development.
Key features educational app for kids should have
The app market has become very competitive, and only apps with the best features and child-friendly design tend to make it to the top. So which features make the app trendy?
|Audio/Video follow-ups||The main element of the educational app for kids should contain interactive exercises with audio/video follow-ups. Kids often get bored doing the same thing for a while, so adding animations and music covers is a must-do task.|
|Up-to-age learning material||Kids tend to lose interest when they have to go through the levels that are too easy or too hard. You should provide an opportunity for young users to choose the task that is both interesting and exciting.|
|Schedule||Healthy learning requires a proper amount of screen time. Creating time-framed logical blocks of tasks can help parents to follow the learning schedule without setting a timer.|
|Success motivator||Visually observing the progress raising is a very pleasant and, at the same time, motivational thing. Bearing another level and seeing fireworks bombs can make a child happy. Calculating awards are also a good cheer up for kids.|
|Grading mechanism||Set goals and track achievements. It helps parents to monitor their children’s learning progress.|
|Tutorials||Give an onboarding trip to your user from the very start. Explain the main idea, how to use all the features, and cherish the promised results. The tutorial also works as an advertisement.|
|Fun factor||Kids should be able to accomplish tasks and learning activities without even realizing that they are learning a thing or two. Avoid unwanted distractions (popups) in order to keep their focus on the main activity. Also, skip hard movements, use only tap or swipe.|
Around the globe, the killer features for educational apps are Augmented reality, Video chats, and Gamification. Consider using these options to enhance the educational app experience for kids even more. The leading app developers in Singapore will gladly support you with all the services listed above.
Tools for the development of educational games
Of course, a specific set of tools depends on the range of requirements. But let’s talk about the most often used tools by game development services providers:
- Custom OS fonts
Tools for custom fonts, views, layouts can be necessary while creating educational apps. The correct choice of color, typeface and text size can prove to be vital for attracting your young target audience.
The biggest use of animation is for entertainment. However, bright animation not only just entertains a kid, but also makes the learning process more fun and smooth.
- Screen Pinning API
This tool enables the user to only show a specific app screen. This may help prevent the kids from distracting or accidentally closing the app, as well as add some parental control to the app.
If you plan to have a really powerful app, it is better to have your own backend built. But if you do not need a big number of files to be stored, firebase can be a great solution in this case. It allows you to quickly develop high-quality apps, grow your user base, and earn more money without spending time on the backend.
Open Graphics Library can be used on various platforms. It is a very important tool since it allows developers to render 2D and 3D vector graphics.
Mistakes to avoid when designing educational games
Most people think that designing games for kids is a piece-of-cake procedure. But by adding bright colors and fun songs only you cannot gain a user base. You will not surprise modern children with such a tactic. Creating a product for kids is hard since we have a different mindset compared to children, but creating a product that will entertain and teach at the same time is much more challenging. Below are the tips on what you can do to make the design process less complex.
- Kids are constantly changing and so are their capabilities, needs, and goals. Their cognitive and physical skills can differ drastically. Thus, adapting the app you’re designing to skills of each age group is a good strategy.
- Further, do not forget about those tiny hands that will play your app and focus on broader gestures like swiping, grabbing, and tapping, rather than pinching, rotating, dropping, etc.
- Bright colors catch an eye, but too much brightness can hurt. Use white font color is the best solution for multiple color backgrounds.
- Heavy text is always a skip. Use simple sentences and short words – children should not be overloaded with information.
- Don’t neglect the importance of children’s safety online – COPPA should be strictly followed.
- In-app advertising. Banners usually include links to websites that redirect kids out of the application. Kids have a very hard time understanding which page is the application and which is not. Also, if the ad shows something that parents do not like – you`ll receive a bad review on your app in a second.
The crucial objective of app development for children is to ensure the balance between play and learning. Thus, it’s important to take into account the methodological approach while designing apps for kids.
Educational applications should not be boring in general, and educational applications for kids should be fun twice as much. Children can be distracted quickly even while playing, so choosing the right education app design is key to catch the kid’s eye. Developing an educational app is a golden idea since remote schooling appears to be well-liked in 2021. It will make it easier for children to learn things and remember them for a long time. There has been a continuous growth in the user-base of educational apps so if you have such a project in your mind, make it real.