Fun Family Apps

If you have a smart phone, tablet, computer, or a child in the home, not only are you familiar with apps, you probably have your favorites. Apps help entertain, be efficient and offer a way to be organized. Although it is estimated that 300 new apps are created every day, the concept and word are not new to our society. I never would have guessed that the word app has been part of the Webster Dictionary since 1987.

There is a specific app that has generated a bit of competition in our household. The entire house is playing. What is it? Many of you will not be surprised to find that it is a game that comes in many different forms: Candy Crush, Free Fall, Maleficent, or Bejeweled. It really is all the same game just with different graphics or helps. It is no wonder that you have most likely heard of these games, or perhaps are even playing them. The Candy Crush empire is reported to make $850,000 per day in app purchases and yearly reports revenue of over $3.1 billion!

Although these games are all the same minus the graphics, they have redemptive value as well. I appreciate the fact that this game, no matter which version, requires you to control your impulsive nature and create strategies to complete the level. One has to intentionally see where the errors were and correct behavior in hopes of passing the level the next time. On some levels you really have to narrow the mental field in order to gain success, while on others the broadening of the mind is what will help you succeed. Sharing ideas of strategies is beneficial because it gets the whole family talking about why a particular strategy worked or failed. In our house we also receive the life lesson of waiting. We do not allow app purchases, so if you run out of lives, you have to wait the time allotment to renew and begin again. My children take this time to compare which level they are on, and discuss strategies that are successful and why. They also will team up and help each other complete a level, letting two minds work together over one.

I am not a fan of spending a considerable amount of time on “buttons”. We have hard limits set in our household as to how much technology is allowed. However, if you want a game that the whole family can play, that can also stimulate cognitive thinking, then any of these are worth a try. The best part – they are free, unless of course you purchase a power-up or more lives.