Best Current Event Apps

United States citizens should see being in the know, in regards to current events, as an enjoyable responsibility. Teaching students is the best way to ensure future generations are excited about this obligation. These apps can keep students of all ages informed on current events.

BrainPOP Featured Movie (Free, Android)

With new video clips everyday, BrainPOP is a wonderful app for elementary school students by helping them make meaning of their world. This app is perfect for providing background knowledge on topics in the news. There are videos on hurricanes, tropical rainforests and famous figures from world history. BrainPOP Featured Movie offers free access to a new video clip everyday. Their selections are usually related to an event that happened on that date in history or a topic in the news. Children can take quizzes to show off what they’ve learned and replay each video with subtitles. If you decide to subscribe to Brainpop, your family will have access to over 750 videos and quizzes.

Curated by Monica Burns

Flipboard: Your News Magazine (Free, Android)

Information only becomes useful when it is accessed. What makes us access it depends on our interests, our needs and how it is presented. The Flipboard: Your News Magazine app takes the news and articles from other sources, and offers the user an alternative presentation. This different way of showing the stories is one many children will feel more at ease with, and it increases the chances that a child will borrow a parent’s handset to catch up on some reading rather than to play a game.

Curated by Spencer Riley

News-O-Matic, Daily Reading for Kids (Free, iPad)

News-O-Matic is a fantastic app for getting elementary school children excited about current events. Its high-interest stories on a variety of topics are up-to-date and kid-friendly. Not only is content aligned to the Grade 3 and Grade 4 Common Core Learning Standards, but News-O-Matic includes photographs, maps and video that will grab your child’s attention, too. With five new articles each day, there will be plenty of content for children to explore.

Curated by Monica Burns

Barefoot World Atlas ($4.99, iPhone)

This atlas is unlike any big dusty book in the library’s reference section. It’s divided into searchable sections which include regions, countries and features. Users can scan the table of contents in these sections or spin the globe and tap on what suits their fancy. Everything is labeled, and tapping the 3D figures on the surface of the globe brings up more information. The volume of information contained in this app would cover hundreds of pages if in print. Every country has a page detailing its capital city, land area, population, highest point, currency and current weather information. Even obscure details like average CO2 emissions per capita may be listed. Features cover animals, famous landmarks and important historical figures.

Curated by Jill Goodman

Nat Geo Explorer for Home (Free, Android)

National Geographic Explorer helps parents bring the world to their elementary schoolers fingertips with high quality pictures and audio support. The stories featured in each issue relate to current environmental issues concerning animal habitats. This app is geared towards this level and includes topics that will grab your child’s attention. Easy to navigate, the issues of National Geographic Explorer available within this app follow a scientist as they travel to different ecosystems. Children can learn about extreme weather conditions, snakes and lemurs. Each page has clear text that accompanies a crisp image. Your kids can follow along as the app reads the text aloud.

Curated by Monica Burns

(This content was originally posted at appoLearning.)

About Stephen Danos

Stephen Danos is the Associate Editor for and Appolicious. He has contributed to articles published on TechCrunchThe Chicago Sun TimesThe Chicago Tribune, and elsewhere. He received his BA in English from the University of Iowa and MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia College Chicago. He is the author of two poetry chapbooks, Playhouse State (H_NGM_N Books, 2012) and Gravitational (The New Megaphone, forthcoming).



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