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Smart Mom’s Smartphone App Toy Box

Male hand holding cellphone with silhouette of a brain

Nationally renowned brain training experts Ken Gibson and Tanya Mitchell have created a free list to help parents shop for toys, games, and brain activities that will help improve their children’s learning skills. (See the list of cognitive skills and their descriptions below.) “Our hope is that parents will shop wisely for toys this year, purchasing toys that can help develop the cognitive skills that make learning possible—like auditory and visual processing, memory, logic & reasoning, processing speed, and attention,” says Gibson. “Research now shows that learning skills can be taught—and therefore improved. Brain skills training does for the mind what physical exercise does for the body.”

“A parent whose child has Attention Deficit Disorder, for example, would want to shop for toys that improve attention,” explains Mitchell. “Likewise, a child who struggles with reading would benefit from games that practice sound blending and segmenting.”

Gibson is the founder of national brain training franchise LearningRx, and the co-author of “Unlock the Einstein Inside: Applying New Brain Science to Wake Up the Smart in Your Child” with Mitchell.

Things to Keep in Mind

  1. A smart toy box will focus on all major learning skills.
  2. Parents can help their kids get smarter at any age.
  3. Brain research shows that the brain continues to grow throughout life.
  4. Parents should help prepare a good learner for school by developing learning skills.
  5. Parents should take 30 minutes three times per week to work on developing these skills.
  6. The best way to strengthen learning skills is to use fun, game-like activities.
  7. Studies show that reading problems can be prevented.
  8. Thirteen Smartphone Apps to Make Your Family Even Smarter

1. 10Plus: The Brain Game for You and Your KidsChart of Math Games

10Plus–The Brain Game is a fast-paced counting adventure that’s as engrossing and entertaining as it is educational! With an emphasis on mathematics–and more specifically addition–the game presents players with a grid of numbers between one and four, challenging them to add them up into sums of 10 as quickly and as many times as they can.

2. AnQSmart Mom's Smartphone App

AnQ (pronounced UnK) is a number game. Your iPhone (or iPod Touch) randomly generates a secret four-digit number that you attempt to identify. You have a maximum of nine attempts to do so. After each attempt your device provides you with two pieces of information: 1) the number of digits (out of four) matching the secret number and 2) the number of digits (out of four) in the correct place.

This is a fun brain teaser. Your goal is to identify the secret number in the fewest possible attempts. Be creative in developing different strategies and you will be surprised about the alternative ways you can find the unknown number.

3. AudioPhile Music Memory GameAudiophile, Don't You (Forget About Me) Your best score is 5005 Points. Match the songs and cover art.

In this fun, fast paced music memory game, select matching songs from a grid of music from your library. Correct matches score points, and the more matches in a row, the more bonus points you get.

4. Brain BombDot Diagrams and Charts

180 exercises to see if you are one of the smartest people on the planet. Only 1% of the population is capable of solving these brain training exercises. Is your brain big enough to take on the challenge?

5. Brain Games II (Five in One)Toy Box App Logo

Keep your brains sharp with Brain Games II. Brain Games II includes five different logical games, each with many, many levels. The games are cleanly designed with easy to follow tutorials that make game play intuitive. All the games are timed so that you can track your performance.

6. Charge Your Brain HDHD - Carton Girl Holding an Outlet Plug

“Charge Your Brain HD” is a combination of entertaining mini-games that will allow you to develop various sections of your brain in a relaxing and funny way. Each mini-game involves different directions of mental activity: image recognition, speed of response, logic, comparison of objects, searching and mathematic skills, memory, etc.

7. Clockwork BrainSmart Mom Smartphone App Clockwork Brain

Discover a series of ingenious mini-games especially created to test various cognitive abilities such as visual, spatial, logic, language, arithmetic, and memory. Train your brain and challenge yourself with Clockwork Brain!

8. Little Ace: The Memory GameMemory Games: Easy, Medium, Hard

Check out new complimentary game in Little Ace’s series- Memory Ace! This easy, fun game has lots of beautiful hand-drawn pictures of characters from a children’s book for iPad “Little Ace and the Ten Commandments.” Finding pairs is an excellent test for your visual memory that gets deceptively more difficult as you advance levels.

9. LuminaLumina

Lumina: The Newest of iPhone Games for iPhone 3G & iPod Touch

iPhone games have never been this much fun for only $1.99. Lumina, a simple iPhone memory game: Watch a pattern of flashing colors, then repeat the pattern by pressing the glass buttons in the same order. As the pattern grows longer, the pace quickens; see if you can keep up! Glistening artwork and melodic sound effects make Lumina a great way to keep your mind challenged and have fun on the go!

10. Math vs. BrainMath vs Brain Game

Math vs Brain is a math question solving game. Your job is to solve all the questions for each challenge and collect as many stars as possible. This app is suitable for people from all ages, young to old. You can even play with your friend or family anytime, anywhere.

11. RubyRepeatSmart Mom Smartphone App: Rubyrepeat

RubyRepeat is a simple game of memory and recall: RubyRepeat plays an increasing sequence of facets on the Ruby game board, and the player attempts to repeat those facets from memory. RubyRepeat is a great way to exercise your short-term memory.

12. Speed Brain ProSmart Mom Smartphone App: Speed Brain Pro

Speed Brain tests your reflexes and your level of attention.

For each level you have one minute to hit 10 moving targets as fast as possible with your fingers. Whenever you’re wrong targets start again from the beginning. If you hit the target with the “X” or if the time is up, you lose a life. Challenge your friends to see who has faster reflexes!

Features :

– Multiplayer for up to two players
– Improve your level of attention
– Improve your reaction time

13. What’s the Difference? HDSmart Mom Smartphone App: What's The Difference? HD


Your power of observation sharpens as you search for the differences and advance through the modes. Time is not your friend and hints must be used wisely.

What’s the Difference? includes JVL’s unique Global Leader Board – an exciting way to see how you measure up against the world’s best!


* Library of 500 high-quality photos; three unique games modes
* Ideal for playing with family and friends
* Post your scores to JVL’s Global Leader Board: compete, compare, conquer!
* In-app purchase option(s) of additional photos: two separate packs; 500 unique photos per pack