Great Games/Apps for Kids 4-6
Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster (360)
This Kinect-enabled offering allows parents and kids to cooperatively play through a living Sesame Street storybook, all while learning important life lessons along the away. Great controller-free mechanics, smart writing, sharp visuals, and immersive mini-games make this one a charm-filled treat for any fan of friendly, furry monsters.
MeeGenius (iOS, Android, PC)
Story time goes digital with MeeGenius' brimming, virtual library of classic — The Three Little Pigs, Jack and the Beanstalk — and contemporary children's books. While parents will appreciate the super-slick navigation, kids will dig cool features such as optional audio narration and read-along word-highlighting.
FarFaria is an interactive world broken into themed lands, such as Bedtime Bluffs and Fantasy Falls, where young readers can access over 100 beautifully illustrated picture books. Budding bookworms will also find reason to return to this page-turners paradise, as a fresh batch of books is added every week.
Sprinkle Junior (iOS, Android)
This touch-happy app allows mischievous tykes to enjoy their favorite pastime — playing with water — without making a mess. Sporting eye-popping graphics, amazing physics effects, and plenty of playful environments, this soggy simulation is an absolute splash.
ABC Food (iOS)
As entertaining as it is educational, ABC Food teaches healthy eating habits while also letting little kitchen helpers chop vegetables, slice fruit, and cook pasta in touch-sensitive mini-games. In addition to fun activities, it features food-focused pictures and videos. Finally, it's okay for kids to play with their food!
Tozzle: Toddler's Favorite Puzzle (iOS, Android)
Any parent who's spent their fair share of time pulling lost puzzle pieces from beneath couch cushions will appreciate having forty-plus puzzles neatly packaged in one place; kids, however, will enjoy this app's engaging drag-and-drop mechanics and the ability to play with puzzles' sound effects once they're solved.
Offering more than the usual toddler-aimed mini-games, Peek-a-Zoo focuses on social development by teaching tykes to identify facial expressions on cartoon animals. Other challenges include identifying the cute creatures' activities and attire like, say, spotting a sunglasses-sporting giraffe at a birthday party.
Toca Train (iOS)
More interactive simulation than mini-game, Toca Train puts choo choo-loving children behind the virtual controls of their very own locomotive. Using simple touch-based levers and buttons, they can explore a storybook island, pick up passengers, load cargo, or simply sound the whistle whenever they please.