Mini Meme: 6 ways to keep the kids ‘appy

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With the summer holidays inching ever closer, buy yourself some peace, quiet, and time with these entertaining app downloads for the young ’uns.

Sago Mini Monsters

R60 / Android, iOS

A monster emerges from the gloopy depths, inviting your youngling to scribble all over it, feed it disgusting food, and then – in a nod to sceptical parents everywhere – clean its grimy teeth. Then it’s time for some stickers and a quick photoshoot before the creature departs, ready for a new ghoul to take its place.

Zen Studio

Free (IAPs) / Android, iOS

Rather than handing your sprog a pack of felt-tips and watching in horror as several disappear up a nostril while the rest are used to colour your furniture, have them try Zen Studio. As the grid of triangles is tapped, notes are played, turning the experience into a suitably chill-outy mix of geometric colouring and ambient audio.

PlaneCrazy

Free / iOS

You could get the kids to fold their own paper planes and fling them about the house/car/ classroom, but that would mean actually finding some paper. Download PlaneCrazy instead and watch as they guide a virtual paper jet over cupboards and books, dodging fans, lights and oncoming jets, appropriately coloured an ominous red.

Bandimal

R60 / iOS

Arming kids with instruments is just asking for trouble, so you might hesitate to give them an app with a crew of cartoon animal musicians. But this oddball and stripped-back but friendly DAW is hugely entertaining, with body-popping electro pandas and bass-belching whales. Just pray your kids remember you when they’re pop royalty.

Toca Nature

R60 / Android, iOS

Toca Boca’s ‘Life’ apps are excellent for keeping kids entertained, but Toca Nature is even better. Your kid carves rivers, builds mountains and plants trees with a finger, then uses the magnifying glass tool to explore the virtual landscape and feed doddering animals. It’s like Populous as re-imagined by the WWF.

Foldify

R50 / iPhone ● R60 / iPad

This mashup of old and new starts with your kid picking a 3D template (there are boxy people, cars and shapes). This is then decorated with scribbles, stickers and photos, before being printed out, folded and glued. It’s fun to watch virtual models become real objects; less so watching your house become a storage unit for endless card creations.

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