By Vicki Little
With so many new family apps popping up, it’s hard to know what’s really worth it and what’s not. Many claim to make life easier for Mom and Dad, but just aren’t worth the hassle of downloading. Parenting can be a hectic job, and we could all use some extra help. So we’ve highlighted the top 7 tried-and-true parenting apps that will make your day go more smoothly:
iReward Chart: This great app makes catching and rewarding good behavior easy! It is very interactive, easy and customizable! With the chart right at your fingertips, you can gently encourage your children to exhibit great behavior, no matter where you are.
- Available on Android, Windows phone, Kindle Fire and in the App Store
Time’s Up for Kids: Every parent knows it’s hard to constantly remind kids that their electronic time is up. Usually there’s grumbling, pleading and negotiating involved. Kids will have a much harder time arguing with this app that immediately blocks them from using a device after a set time. The best part is they can’t cheat because a passcode has to be entered in order for the device to work again.
- Available for iPhone and iPad
PlaceUs: This app is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. It seamlessly allows you to keep track of your family on a private map, locate your loved ones through GPS, and know when they get to where they are going. All without time-consuming check ins.
- Available for iPhone and Android
Our Family Wizard: This one is a little pricier with a monthly rate, but it is definitely worth it if you are a co-parent. It allows you to share your children’s schedules, keep track of medication administered and when, share notes, and see who is responsible for what each day. It also has a spot for shared expenses, journal entries for important things that happened, and even financial or medical information as it pertains to the children.
- Android, iPhone, Kindle, and online
Red Laser: This app will save you time and money. Red Laser compares prices for you, looks for items in stores near your location, and even keeps all of your loyalty cards in the one thing you won’t leave at home — your phone!
- Available for Android, iPhone and Windows
Cozi: The Cozi app is fantastic for busy families. You can share everyone’s schedules and activities as well as grocery lists and chores. Everything gets updated in real time so you can keep up with the changes in someone else’s day.
- Available for iPhones, Androids, Kindle Fire and Windows 8.1
Zoodles: Most parents are very familiar with their kids constantly asking to play on their phone, especially when there’s even a minute of waiting. Zoodles is an app that creates a safe playground of games for your children to play on, free from inappropriate ads that target kids. Each child has his own playground, and you will find activities ranging from reading, to art games, to science. The games are educational, and you have the opportunity to delete games that are either not right for your family or just plain annoying.
- Available for Mac, PC, iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, and Android.
Vicki Little is a work-at-home mom with two young kids. A Colorado native, she is the Publisher and Editor of Macaroni Kid Aurora and Downtown Denver. When she isn’t writing or trying to keep up with her kids she can be found volunteering, reading, or enjoying a bottle of wine with friends.
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