What if the best apps for kids are those that promote generosity?
If wondering what generosity has to do with success, one only needs to look at scholarly work from Paul Tough who includes this critical character trait in his book, How Children Succeed. Or one can look at scholarly work from Professor Adam Grant who (as mentioned in this Forbes article) “has built his career in part on a surprising proposition: that the most productive, high-achieving people are also the people who are the most giving and altruistic.” Successful school teachers continually encourage their young students to share with classmates and create things at school to give to others at home. What if giving is not a small thing? What if it is quite big?
Having taught preschool, kindergarten, and first grade students, I have seen the power of a generous mindset in the classroom. Many children will build skills and abilities, try new challenges solely to help others, and create items for their families. Win-win! Kids discover both pre-academic learning and character. If your family or preschool classroom promotes giving and being generous, here are a few apps that coordinate with this mindset:
– Animal Feeding Fun is a free app that lets toddlers and young preschool children feed animals the particular foods that they love to eat. Use your iPad’s easy “restrictions” to avoid in app purchases!
– Toca Tea Party encourages toddlers and preschoolers to generously serve juice, tea, and delightful snacks at a table set for fun and childhood imagination. Delightful!
– Biscuit Gives A Gift (based on the popular children’s story book) is an activity app that helps preschoolers to think of giving and generosity. It’s set in the Christmas gift-giving season.
– Stretching to app players of any age, Flower Garden Free lets families discuss growing, arranging, and giving flowers to others as a way to brighten their day. Kids can send their bouquets through email to family and friends from your device’s family contact list.
– However, if you’re uncomfortable giving children access to your contact list (like I would be) try Juddly games that offer kids a send button to deliver creations only to your prearranged list. Sending a special sandcastle, cake, comic panel, penguin picture, or photo is an age appropriate moment of childhood generosity.
But more important than specific app-explorations, are ongoing discussions and modeling of this mindset in our busy home-lives and classrooms. Take time for others.