Best Apps for Kids Ages 9-12

The best mobile apps for tweens can provide a rich world of entertainment for growing minds. Our app reviews will guide you toward the best apps for this age group, and steer you away from the ones that aren't worth your time. Preteens need concrete guidelines for responsible use of the smart phone -- these are powerful little devices. They also need to know what your expectations are for responsible, respectful online behavior. In addition to keeping an eye on time limits, you'll want to be on the lookout for apps with multiplayer capabilities and make sure you can turn them off if you're not comfortable with them. Review our 5 app tips for more advice, and check out of Essential Apps Guide for even more fabulous picks for your kids.

Browse Best Apps for Kids Ages 9-12

A meditative musical journey through a lush neon wonderland.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Fire phone, Kindle Fire
(2016)
Stunning graphics bring snowboarding to endless runners.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2015)
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Cute coding adventure introduces logic of computer science.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2016)
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Addictive physics puzzler requires persistence.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2014)
Kids learn, share, and build skills on excellent social app.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2013)
Innovative geometry app integrates learning with play.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire
(2014)
Excellent physics puzzler emphasizes engineering practices.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Fire phone, Kindle Fire
(2015)
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Photo-sharing app offers tweens good intro to social media.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
(2014)
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Marble mazes make for fun math practice.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Fire phone, Kindle Fire
(2012)
Brighten minds with mini-games and DIY experiments.
Devices: iPad
(2015)
Fab medical sim promotes heart-healthy living.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2015)
Pizzeria sim delivers valuable lessons about economics.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2013)
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Fun puzzler with programming skills; some crude humor.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2013)
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Dynamic estimation game lets kids design the questions.
Devices: iPad
(2013)
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Cool interactive science app lets kids explore sound.
Devices: iPad
(2014)
Fun mix of platform creation and arcade play.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
(2015)
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Shape up spatial skills with augmented reality tool.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Windows Phone
(2015)
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Challenging puzzler teaches kids to think like programmers.
Devices: iPad
(2013)
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Terrifically imaginative game uses text, not graphics.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2014)
Gorgeous reference shows the wonders of human anatomy.
Devices: iPad
(2014)
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Inventive, juicy shooting game with cartoon violence.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Fire phone, Kindle Fire
(2015)
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Powerful sequencer lets kids create pro-quality recordings.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2013)
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Stunning visuals and tough puzzles delight and challenge.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Mac, Apps for Windows
(2016)
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Colorful graphics, fun missions engage as kids experiment.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2014)
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Stellar videos, interactive features make beautiful music.
Devices: iPad
(2015)
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Tough but fun geometry puzzles for brainy players.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire
(2010)
Completely charming -- and funny -- puzzle game.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2014)
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Superb physics puzzler challenges kids, inspires creativity.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2013)
Fantastic health app empowers kids to reach goals.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2014)
Plentiful, fun, fantastic, and free language lessons.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Nook HD, Windows Phone
(2014)
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Explore the world of music through fun but serious quizzes.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
(2014)
Graphic novel teaches kids to feel good about themselves.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Nook HD
(2011)
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Terrific, worthy sequel to one of the best puzzle games.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android
(2014)
Vocabulary-building word puzzle game shines on iOS.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Apps for Windows, Windows Phone
(2011)
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Well-done Minecraft-like game, with action twist.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Fire phone, Kindle Fire, Windows Phone
(2015)
Go inside history with stunning visuals, critical decisions.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2015)
Fun history strategy game has improved graphics.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2014)
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Inventive, interactive story puzzler has thrills and chills.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
(2016)
Fantastic approach to learning algebra through gameplay.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Apps for Windows, Windows Phone
(2014)
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Space-science physics game a blast for budding engineers.
Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Fire phone, Kindle Fire, Windows Phone
(2014)