Early Childhood Apps

Names of each App link to a review. Please note that prices on this page are for the Australian iTunes store. International Prices and availability will vary. Universal Apps will work on both iPhone and iPad. iPhone Apps usually work well on iPads.

Apps in this category are great for play, but can also provide some wonderful oral language opportunities as children engage in imaginary play. Although most are aimed at young children, some may be suitable for older children with special needs.

Kapu Forest App icon - pink owlKapu Forest HD - Kapu ToysKapu Forest HD – Publisher: Kapu toys, Price: $2.99, iPad only.

Explore the forest and tap on the 12 animal friends to find activities and games.  These include mazes, sorting, feeding the animals and more.  Beautiful graphics and sound effects.  Aimed at young children but suitable for older children.  A free Lite version is available so you can try before you buy.

Kapu Forest - Kapu ToysKapu Forest – Publisher:  Kapu Toys, Price $1.99. iPhone

Identical activity to the above, only formatted for the smaller iPhone screen.  (It looks fine on iPads too.)  A free Lite version is available so you can try before you buy.

Toca Doctor HD - Toca BocaToca Doctor HD – Publisher:  Toca Boca, Price:  $1.99, iPad

You get to be the doctor in this app.  Select a highlighted area on the body and then treat the problem you find there.  Some ailments include drippy noses, head lice, scratches, broken bones, prickles, headaches and tummy aches.  Each cure involves a fun activity, game or puzzle. There is a  free Lite version to try first.

An iPhone version is also available at the same price and there is a Lite version for iPhone if you’d like to try before you buy.

Toca Hair Salon - Toca BocaToca Hair Salon – Publisher: Toca Boca, Price $1.99, Universal

Choose a character from a choice of 6 animals and people.  You can wash, rinse, towel-dry or blow-dry hair, colour hair, cut and shave hair, comb and add hair accessories. If you cut or shave it too short, you can grow it back with a special lotion. (Don’t some of us wish that was available in real life?) Selecting the camera will take a photo of your creation and save it to your photo reel. You can turn the camera feature off using the setting App if you find your reel filling up too fast.

Toca Hair Salon - Christmas Gift - Toca BocaToca Hair Salon –  Christmas Gift – Publisher:  Toca Boca, Price:  Free, Universal

This app is similar to the Toca Hair Salon App.  In this App you are limited to two characters (Santa or a Christmas Tree), and you can’t wash and dry their hair, but most of the other options are present.   You can take photos and they are placed in a Christmas-themed frame in your photo roll.

Toca House - Toca BocaToca House – Publisher: Toca Boca, Price $1.99, Universal

Explore the different rooms and areas in the Toca House and help the residents do their chores.  Chores include bathing, sorting the mail, mowing, ironing, washing the clothes, washing the dishes, hanging up pictures, putting the groceries away, sorting flowers, and hanging up the laundry.

Toca Kitchen - Toca BocaToca Kitchen – Publisher: Toca Boca, Price $1.99, Universal

Pick a person  (from two animals and two people) and then select some food from the fridge for them to eat.  Food can be served raw, but it is more fun when you cook it.  Options foor cooking include  chopping, blending, boiling, frying, and microwaving.  Not everyone likes the same food, and some may be rejected entirely, or may only be accepted if cooked.  Vegetarians can choose the Vegetarian option from the Settings App>General>Apps. This removes the meat options from the fridge/pantry.

Toca Kitchen Monsters - Toca Boca Toca Kitchen Monsters – Publisher:  Toca Boca, Price: Free, Universal

Very similar to the Toca Kitchen App above.  In this free version, you can select one of two cute monsters to feed.  There are fewer food choices, but still enough to keep you and your child entertained.  All of the cooking options are available. As with the paid version, vegetarians can choose the Vegetarian option in both Apps from the Settings App>General>Apps. This removes the meat options from the screen.

Toca Robot Lab - Toca BocaToca Robot Lab – Publisher: Toca Boca, Price $1.99, Universal

Create robots by selecting different heads, bodies and legs, with different options each time you play.  Once you have made your robot, fly them through the maze, collecting stars, and then find the giant magnet to exit.

Toca Store - Toca BocaToca Store – Publisher: Toca Boca, Price $1.99, Universal

Great to play with a friend, taking on the roles of storekeeper and customer.  Choose 5 items to sell (from a choice of 34 different items, including food, toiletries, toys and more.)  The customer chooses an item and places it on the counter.  The shopkeeper presses a number from 1 to 5 on the till, then the customer counts out that many coins from their purse.  The item is then added to their shopping bag.  Great for practicing oral language skills, for practicing language associated with shopping, and  counting to five.

Toca Tea Party - Toca BocaToca Tea Party – Publisher: Toca Boca, Price $1.99, iPad only

Simulates a tea party and can be played by three friends, either real or toys. Children set the table with tablecloth and plates, and they select drinks and cakes from several choices.  Once the table is ready, they “eat” and “drink.”  The food and drinks can be replenished, and any drink spills can be mopped up with a tissue.   After the party is over, you can wash the dishes and start again.

2 Responses to “Early Childhood Apps”

  1. Julia Tobin 07/10/2015 at 6:01 am #

    Hi Sarah,

    It’s really cool to read the detailed descriptions of the apps that you have reviewed. They make the apps seem easy to understand and even more fun to play. The studio that I am working for, Mark Media, is about to release an educational early language learning app called Fun with Colours to the Australian App Store this month, and I would really appreciate you taking a look.

    The ocean-themed app is an exciting introduction to the Mandarin language and colour identification, with lots of repetition, adorable animations and colourful activities to keep preschoolers entertained while they learn. We are planning to release an English version that teaches simple Mandarin vocabulary, and a Mandarin version that does the same with English vocab.

    For more information, you can watch the Fun with Colours Trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmc8GX3Y__Q . I will be happy to send you a promo code if you are interested.

    Please don’t hesitate to email me if you have any questions or comments. I would love to hear your feedback about the app. Any suggestions and reviews would be most welcome.

    All the best,


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