One of the greatest joys of childhood is holding a coloring book and crayons in your hands.

There’s nothing quite like the freedom to roam across the page with a rainbow of colors at your fingertips, or the challenge of staying in the lines.

However, the traditional coloring book is becoming more and more of a dinosaur as millennial kids turn to phones or other electronic toys instead of traditional creative playtime. So how can you blend creative play with your kid’s new tech knowledge?

Easy. There's an app for that!

  1. Geocaching by Groundspeack Inc.

 If you’re not familiar with the addictive, worldwide scavenger hunt that is “Geocaching,” now’s the time to start. Using classic coordinates and a simple GPS (you can install one for free on your smartphone or use an app like Google Maps!), you and your kids can find and uncover hidden treasure chests close to home. This app is user-friendly and suited for geocachers of all levels, so even the young ones can master the maps. Download for both IOS and Android, here. 

  1. Fetch! Lunch Rush by PBS

Based on the popular PBS Kid’s program, Fetch! this interactive app blends math and exercise without your kids even knowing. Players follow the show’s hero, Ruff Ruffman on-set of his new movie as he prepares for the craziest time of day: the lunch rush. Each hungry crewmember has to be fed the right amount of food in the quickest time possible. The app follows your kids’ movement while subtly forcing them to add, subtract, and react. And what’s more? It’s free. Download for iPhone, here. 

  1. Audubon Guide Box Set: Birds, Trees, Wildflowers, and Mammals by Green Mountain Digital LLC

 “What tree is that?” “What bird makes that call?”

Have you ever found yourself without these answers? Thankfully, the Audubon Society is prepared for all of your young explorer’s questions. This is by far the most extensive nature app with the widest range of living species. Complete with voice features to identify sounds and calls, bird sightings in your area, and collections of pictures for each creature or plant, this app will help your kids get their eyes off the screen and learn about the world around them. Download for IOS and Android, here. 

  1. CHATTERPIX KIDS by Duck Duck Moose

This app turns creativity into a belly-full of laughs. The premise is simple: take a picture of anything and turn it into a puppet! Record accompanying sound, add whatever zany accessory you please, and your kids suddenly have their very own talking puppet. They can turn trees into wise wizards and their teddy bears into loud lion tamers—or whatever else their imagination dreams up. The app allows them to use their imagination while they’re on their feet. It’s free and it never gets old. Trust us. For both IOS and iPhone downloads, click here.  

  1. National Geographic World Atlas by National Geographic Society

 Instead of hauling around a road map or atlas, the National Geographic World Atlas app allows you and your loved ones to explore the world using just your fingertips. Zoom in on specific countries or cities; view the map in a variety of settings, including “antique”; learn about up-to-the-minute weather in each location; and spin the globe and receive facts anywhere you click! Get lost in our favorite atlas app and start pinning every spot you visit as a family. Click here to download for IOS and Android. 

Mommy blogger credit: Marnie Craycroft