Are There Educational Apps for 3 and 4 Year Olds?

When people talk about tablets, they often default to apps that are designed for entertainment. While there’s nothing wrong with using a tablet for that purpose, it’s only scratching the surface in terms of what’s available. There is a vast number of educational apps for learners of all ages. That includes adults who want to do things like learn a new language, as well as young learners.

If you’re wondering exactly how young, there are plenty of apps designed specifically around the learning needs of children under the age of four. When parents think of children this age using a tablet, they often worry about them turning into a YouTube zombie. Although that’s a valid concern, it’s not something that should overshadow all the benefits the right type of tablet usage can offer. So with that in mind, we’re going to cover what to look for in educational apps for 3 and 4 year olds:

The Top 3 Traits of a Great Educational App for Young Children

The first trait of a great educational app for this age group is being easy to use. That includes simple graphics and big buttons to tap. Second, the app should have plenty of visual cues. Those cues should be supported by instructions that are automatically read to the child using it. And third, apps for 3 and 4 year olds should have limited or no in-app purchases. Any app that focuses on trying to get a child to make purchases to keep playing does not have the child’s best interest in mind.

3 More Important Considerations

In addition to the traits we covered above, there are a few more that can help you find the ideal tablet apps to help your child learn. One is focusing on apps that introduce school and soft skills. This can include numbers, letters and patterns, as well as social-emotional skills. Another important trait is to find apps that build on your child’s existing interests. While this can obviously vary from one child to the next, making this a priority is a great way to help your child reap maximum benefits by getting fully immersed in the learning experience.

Privacy and safety are the other element you’ll want to keep in mind. It’s fairly easy to check that an app complies with with the Children’s Online Privacy and Protection Act (COPPA). Other privacy elements that should be present are an easy start that doesn’t require signing up, as well as safety features for any social elements built into the app.

To learn more about education issues related to 3 and 4 year olds, be sure to read our blog post on starting preschool, as well as what we wrote about kindergarten readiness.

The Benefits of Tablets for Children with Disabilities

Like many forms of technology, tablets were initially viewed as an entertainment device. But it hasn’t taken long for professionals across many different fields to find very compelling use cases for tablets. Educators are the perfect example of a profession that has embraced the benefits of tablets.

As we’ve previously discussed, tablets are changing the future of education. In addition to helping all young learners, tablets are also an especially powerful tool for teaching children with disabilities. We’re going to dig into how this technology can be used as a therapeutic device, along with the types of personalized apps and learning experiences that are available through a tablet.

How Tablets Can Be Used As A Therapeutic Device

Many children with disabilities have challenges related to their motor skills. What’s great about tablets is they’re much easier to operate than previous forms of technology. Thanks to their intuitive design and operation, children with disabilities only need to complete very basic inputs to engage in highly immersive learning experiences. Researchers have actually found that using a tablet on a regular basis can help children develop and improve their fine motor skills.

The intuitive nature of tablets has been especially evident for children with autism. Educators have used quotes including “it’s like a fish to water” to describe how autistic children respond to tablets. Estimates peg the success rate for using tablets to educate those with autism at above eighty percent.

Tablets Offer a Highly Personalized Learning Experience

One of the big shifts in education has been to focus on the individual needs of different types of learners. For special needs children, tablets make it easier than ever to tailor high-quality learning experiences to what will benefit a specific child the most. One of the amazing things about what can be accomplished through this type of personalization is students are able to get instant feedback and have the activities they’re working on tailored to their needs in real-time.

Another way that tablets are able to harness the power of personalization is through voice recognition. Since communication and language skills are a significant hurdle for many special needs children, having a device that makes it possible to practice these skills in a structured way is invaluable. Finally, the availability of so many different apps means there’s generally one that’s focused on helping a child with just about any type of problem.

If you’re excited and inspired about the type of learning that tablets can enable, we encourage you to learn more about our mission and how you can play a direct role in putting these powerful learning devices in the hands of kids who need them most.

Kindle Fire for Kids – Learn Why It’s So Great

At KliCwow, we’re passionate about the positive impact the right kind of technology can have on young children. As studies done by leaders in the field of pediatrics have found, “access to, familiarity with and skill using mobile devices are the first steps in achieving digital literacy.” We believe that achieving this type of literacy is a must for closing the digital divide that currently exists within many low-income and minority communities.

Although tablets provide the ideal type of technology experience for young children, there have traditionally been a variety of barriers which have prevented the spread of these devices in disadvantaged communities. As an organization which has gone deep into this issue, we have a lot of great things to say about the Kindle Fire for Kids. In fact, we’re going to share our thoughts on this device with you right now:

The Basics

This device, which is made by Amazon, is a 7-inch tablet. That size is ideal for younger children to hold and use, but not so large that they’re going to get overwhelmed by holding it. One of the design features that sets the Kindle Fire for Kids apart from many other tablets is its durability. Specifically,a very durable foam shell fully wraps the sides and entire back of the tablet. The shell, which can be removed, means the inevitable drops that are going to occur when a child uses a tablet won’t break it.

This tablet is designed so that it’s easy to charge and control the volume. The tablet also includes a headphone jack, as well as a camera on the back (which is protected but still visible thanks to a cutout in the foam shell). In addition to the size of this tablet being perfect for kids’ hands, the weight of just under 15 ounces is ideal as well.

Controls, Apps and Much More

One of the reasons that children love using this tablet is because the screen provides graphics that are crisp and bright. The tablet runs on Fire OS, which Amazon has made very intuitive and easy to understand. The ability for children to easily navigate to exactly what they want is a big part of why tablets provide an ideal learning device.

Speaking of learning, another very compelling aspect of this tablet is the combination of great parental controls and tons of kid-friendly content. That content includes apps and curated YouTube videos. The tablet even makes it possible to set a daily educational goal for children to complete.

If you want to support KliCwow’s efforts to get this amazing learning device in the hands of every three and four year old in Clermont County, you can do so by donating now!

Your Donation to KliCwow Can Make All the Difference

Since coming up with the initial idea for KliCwow and bringing it forward to the community, we’ve been humbled time and time again by how much support we’ve received. Because the goal of our project is to help every three and four year old in Clermont County, it truly takes everyone’s help to make that happen.

As we transition from summer into fall, we want to give up an update on our progress. While we’re very happy with how most of the pieces of the project have come together, fully securing all the financial resources we need to make this project a complete success is still a challenge.

With the number of days until mid-October getting less and less, we’re asking the community we care about so much to come together and help give us a final push to the finish line. Every donation matters, which is why we want to share exactly what we’ll be able to accomplish with the support of your donation:

Maximize Opportunities for Every Clermont County Child

We strongly believe that every child in Clermont County deserves the opportunity to establish the foundation for a successful future through learning. However, when children aren’t able to join an early learning program for any number of reasons, that disadvantage may continue to plague them throughout their educational experience and beyond. One of the objectives of KliCwow is to eliminate that disadvantage and maximize opportunities for every child.

Provide Support to Both Parents and Educators

Just as KliCwow wouldn’t be possible without the support of a community, raising and educating children isn’t possible without support from multiple parties. That’s why we’re committed to helping both parents and educators have access to the resources they need throughout the process of guiding children’s cognitive growth and development.

Create a Positive Association with Education

Research has found that one of the reasons more children don’t pursue career paths involving math is their early exposure to this subject creates negative associations. By providing tablets that are pre-programmed with interactive educational programs which teach subjects that include pre-math skills, we want to do our part to help reverse that trend.

Kickstart Children’s Technology Skills

Ask any expert in a field like labor economics, and they will say in no uncertain terms that technology will be a driving force behind all future career paths and options. The younger children are exposed to mastering technology, the more intuitive any technology they encounter will be. This type of digital literacy is essential for every child and a cornerstone of what KliCwow is doing.

As you can see above, your financial support will make a real difference for the future of Clermont County. We are setup to accept both one-time and recurring donations online, so please help KliCwow help our community’s children by donating today!

Kindergarten Readiness

When it comes to knowing if a child is ready for kindergarten, there’s no such thing as a perfect formula. That being said, there are definitely factors that can be used to assess how prepared a child is for the things they will be expected to do and learn in kindergarten. Since education at this age is a topic that we’re passionate about, we want to share some of the top factors for determining kindergarten readiness.

Important Factors for Kindergarten Readiness

There are six main categories of factors. The first is expressive and receptive language. The key factors within this category are:

  • Speaks in complete sentences most of the time
  • Understands and follows directions with at least two steps
  • Understands vocabulary related to position, direction, size and comparison
  • Makes simple predictions and comments about a story being read


The second category is approach to learning and cognition. This includes:

  • Matches two like pictures in a set of five pictures
  • Classifies (same/different, alike/not alike) objects by physical features
  • Organizes objects that go together in groups
  • Recognizes, copies or repeats patterning sequence
  • Demonstrates the ability to correctly put in order or sequence up to three story pictures
  • Participates in repeating a familiar song, poem, fingerplay and/or nursery rhyme


Next up is phonological awareness and print knowledge. Key factors within this category include:

  • Recognizes own name in print
  • Recognizes familiar signs, words and logos in the child’s environment
  • Identifies two words that rhyme/sound the same when given rhyming picture words
  • Recognizes ten alphabet letter names (may include those in own name) by pointing to requested letter


Fourth is mathematics. Important factors for kindergarten readiness are:

  • Counts number of objects in small group (up to five objects)
  • Demonstrates an understanding of “adding to” and “taking away” using objects up to five
  • Identifies/points to three shapes (circle, square and triangle)


Second to last is social and emotional, which covers:

  • Identifies self as a boy or girl
  • Knows parent’s first and last name
  • Demonstrates independence in personal care (washing hands, dressing, bathroom use)


And the final category is physical development. The three factors in this category are:

  • Uses writing and drawing tools and child-sized scissors with control and intention
  • Copies figures such as a straight line, circle, X and plus sign
  • Demonstrates gross motor skills including hops, jumps, runs and catching a ball


In terms of how to improve kindergarten readiness, there’s a lot of research that has shown tablets are a very effective tool for accomplishing this goal. In fact, the research has shown that tablets can be used to level the playing field for kids who may not have otherwise been quite as prepared.

If you want to learn more about kindergarten readiness and how KLiCWow is helping kids from all backgrounds with this issue, be sure to take a look at our About page.

Starting Preschool – Tips for Parents and Kids

Preschool is a big milestone for both parents and children. While there’s a lot to look forward to with preschool, it can also create stress and anxiety. One way that parents can help themselves feel more comfortable with this change and also reduce the likelihood of their child experiencing a lot of anxiety is to take some steps to prepare. If you’re wondering what exactly you should do to prepare your child for this change, we’ve put together a list of the best tips to help you out:

1. Get Social

Spending time with other children is a big part of preschool. Regardless of how much time your child currently spends with kids who are similar in age, prepping for preschool is a great time to add a few more of those hangouts to your weekly schedule.

2. Talk in Detail Instead of Broad Strokes

Parents often say things like “it will be the most fun you’ve ever had” when their child asks about preschool. Although those statements are made with good intentions, they’re not necessarily the most helpful for kids. A better option is to be as detailed and honest as possible with your responses. For example, you can talk about the types of activities your child will be doing and that there will be other kids there as well. Be sure to schedule at least one school visit prior to preschool officially kicking off.

3. Create a Goodbye Ritual

One of the reasons preschool is a common anxiety trigger for children is they aren’t used to being away from their parent and get worried that they won’t come back or won’t be able to find the school. You can help to counteract these fears by coming up with a little ritual where you explicitly let your child know that you’ll be back later in the day. It’s also a good idea to add a buffer of time for the first few days in case there’s a need for any extra time to say goodbye.

4. Emphasize Reading and Listening

You really can’t spend too much time reading to your child. Whenever you do, make a point of getting your child to actively listen and engage. This will help develop the skills that will be needed when your child is listening to a teacher in class.

5. Enjoy Creativity

In addition to working on reading and listening skills, art projects like molding clay or finger-painting are great for developing fine motor & visual skills. Having lots of art supplies that your child can enjoy is very beneficial. A tablet with apps that are designed to spark learning and creativity can be a great option as well.

For more posts like this about children, education and technology, head over to the main page of our blog.