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12 Free Brain-Building Apps for Kids

Here's a list of mobile Apps that are great for keeping young (and old) minds at work!

Caught in traffic, car line or a long wait at the DMV with a bored kid tugging at your arm? Break out your cell phone and download one of these free apps to help strengthen their cognitive skills. Exercising your mind works just like exercising your body: it’s never too late to start! That’s because the human brain is “plastic” (capable of changing at any age), which is a good thing—unlike those chairs at the DMV!

1. Tangram

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at: http://m.androlib.com or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: spatial reasoning, visual processing, planning
  • Invented in China, this game requires that users form specific shapes with seven puzzle pieces. Master the game through the Arcade mode and you can advance to the 1,000-puzzle challenge mode.

2. Train Conductor 2 Lite

  • Available for: Android
  • Download at:  http://trainconductorusa.com
  • Cognitive skills: strategy, planning, processing speed
  • Voted “Best Mobile Game of 2010” by the Independent Game Festival of China, the “lite” version of this game requires quick decision-making skills to guide trains to their destination while avoiding disastrous collisions.

3. Tetris free

  • Available for: Android 
  • Download at: www.eamobile.com/home/
  • Cognitive skills: planning, visual processing, processing speed
  • Slide, rotate and drop shaped pieces into place at a fast pace. 

4. WordSearch Unlimited 

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at:   "http://jiuzhangtech.com or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: visual processing, strategy
  • With three levels and your choice of themes, each puzzle is unique.

5. Bubble Blast 2

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at: http://m.androlib.com/  or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: planning, visual processing, strategy
  • Burst the different colored bubbles and launch chain reactions to eliminate groups of bubbles.

6. Hangman Free

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at:  http://www.optimesoftware.com/ or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: logic and reasoning, visual processing, segmenting
  • This classic vocabulary game allows you to play against the machine or a friend.

7. Soduko Free

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at: www.Genina.com
  • Cognitive skills: strategy, visual processing, logic and reasoning
  • Your favorite numbers game from the Sunday paper is now available for your phone!

8. Blox

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at:  https://market.android.com/ or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: visual processing, processing speed, planning, strategy
  • Inspired by Tetris and Bubble Blast, this game lets you tilt and touch to play.

9. Kids Preschool Puzzle FREE

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at:  https://market.android.com  or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: visual processing, planning
  • This highly rated game offers 20 free puzzles and lots of positive reinforcement.

10. Memory Matches

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at:  https://market.android.com or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: working memory, short-term memory
  • Tough enough for grown-ups but easy enough for young children, this classic card matching game can help anyone strengthen their memory.

11. Simon Says

  • Available for: Android or iPhone
  • Download at:  https://market.android.com or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: auditory processing, processing speed, visual processing, attention
  • The simple-but-not-easy famous game is back!

12. Motion Math Zoom

  • Available for: Android and iPhone
  • Download at:  https://market.android.com or www.itunes.com
  • Cognitive skills: numerical fluency, processing speed, visual processing
  • This fun math game has different levels to work for ages 4 through 12. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Mark Constantine June 24, 2013 at 04:30 PM
Simon Says. Test your memory and boost your brain power with this fun and addictive memory game. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=air.Mark.SimonSays

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