Children's Technology Review shared these five top apps with us from their comprehensive monthly database of kid-tested reviews. The site covers everything from math and counting to reading and phonics.

Ka11. Vampire — Kids Story Book
Ages 3-up

Overall rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars
Why we like it: This playful 10-page ebook would be wonderful around Halloween, but will hold a child's attention all year around. But it has the added bonus of being a good early-language experience. Each screen contains narrated text with highlighted words; plus such things as a finger-eating plant and a bug-squishing game, not to mention a piano keyboard made of screaming coffins.
Need to know: Don't miss the face-decorating activity that uses your front-facing camera, and lets you paste weird eyes or fangs onto your face.
You can record your own narration or toggle between English, Spanish and Portuguese.
Ease of use: 9/10

Educational: 7/10

Entertaining: 10/10

Ka2-final2. MyScript Calculator
Ages 8-up

Overall rating: 4.75 out of 5 stars
Why we like it: Transform your iPad or Android device into a smart mathematical slate, capable of letting children sketch out any math problem. You start by writing, using your finger, any numeral or mathematical expression, such as 2 + 2. Your imperfect-looking numerals suddenly melt into a perfect math equation, along with the answer.
Need to know: This type of app could give a child another way to practice math facts along with the fine motor skills needed to write.
Ease of use: 9/10

Educational: 10/10

Entertaining: N/10

Ka3-final3. Just Going to the Dentist — Little Critter
Ages 2-5

Overall rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars
Why we like it: Every kid has to go to the dentist — and here's an app that helps children deal with that reality. Based on the Mercer Mayer printed book, this is about Little Critter's visit to Dr. Ghum. Twenty hidden creatures are scattered throughout the story, to keep things fun, and all of the text is read aloud, with a simple tap.
Need to know: Note that the Dentist is played by a male hippo — the assistant is female. The story has excellent object/text association, typical of other Oceanhouse apps, and it is possible to record your own narrator track, which can be saved in case you have to go on a business trip, and your child wants to hear a familiar voice.
Ease of use: 10/10

Educational: 9/10

Entertaining: 9/10

Ka44. Monkey Word School Adventure
Ages 5-12

Overall rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Why we like it: Six bite-sized phonics and word-recognition games come in one app — each starring a playful monkey. The games introduce short words and help children notice the word patterns they'll encounter in school.
Need to know: Management features let you customize three separate profiles (one for each child); plus you can toggle the sound on or off. You can also choose between having the difficulty level gradually increase automatically, or you can manually set it up for your child.
Ease of use: 9/10

Educational: 8/10

Entertaining: 9/10

Ka55. Little Things Forever
Ages 6-up

Overall rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Why we like it: Here's an update to one of the best — and most mellow — hidden-object apps for the iPad. This second edition contains ten fresh mosaic puzzles based on thousands of "little things" — clothing items, tools, animals and other household items — cleverly woven into a larger object.
Need to know: This is a great app to play together with a child or group of children. Note that there is also an Android version.
Ease of use: 10/10

Educational: 9/10

Entertaining: 9/10

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