Apps and Websites for Grandparents to Try

Find Crafts, Identify Birds and Be a Better Babysitter, Plus More

There are so many apps and websites that are terrific for grandparents. A comprehensive list would be impossible to compile. This short list, however, may open your eyes to some creative uses of technology. You owe it to yourself to try one or two, or maybe all.

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    If you're looking for fun offline activities, check out the Pi'ikea Street website.
    Courtesy of Pi'ikea Street

    Pronounced pee-ee-kay-uh, this website offers apps for iPhone, iPad or iPod. The apps are family-friendly and fun, but the features included on the website really won my heart. The site includes close to a hundred crafts. Generously sized thumbnails make the list easy to scan, and the directions are clear and easy to follow. Since I love to experience art with the grandchildren, I also love the activities that are geared around introducing children to great artists like Piet Mondrian and Georges...MORE Seurat.

  • 02 of 06
    fun activities for grandchildren at Seussville
    Courtesy of Seussville

     I remember the first Dr. Seuss I read -- The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins -- and of course I've read this one and many others to the children and grandchildren. The Seussville website offers a dozen or so games based on the books plus a dozen other activities, mostly educational and all fun. Of course, there's also information about the author and links to buy his books. 

  • 03 of 06
    little peanut on the go app for grandparent babysitters
    Courtesy of Little Peanut on the Go

    Rather than being an app for entertaining the grandchildren, Little Peanut on the Go is designed for parents and grandparents. It allows parents to easily and safely share information with someone who is caring for a child. If you're a grandparent who loves to babysit your grandchildren, you'll appreciate the idea behind Little Peanut on the Go. You'll really appreciate it if you've ever been missing one crucial bit of information relating to a grandchild's care. Packing...MORE lists help you keep up with the grandkids' belongings, too.

  • 04 of 06
    Khan Academy for grandparents and grandkids
    Courtesy of Khan Academy

    I found Khan Academy when I was helping my grandson with his math homework and found myself lost in the world of exponents with negative bases. When I did an Internet search for the term, Khan Academy popped up, and I've been a fan ever since. A non-profit, Khan Academy also also works with partners to create online resources that are as much fun as they are brain-expanding. Learn about animation with Pixar or do science experiments with the Exploratorium. It's perfect for learners of...MORE all ages.

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  • 05 of 06
    app for grandparents to identify birds
    Courtesy of Merlin

    I feel ready good when I'm hiking with the grandkids and we see a bird. That's a shrike, I'll say, or a cormorant or a cattle egret. Occasionally, however, I'm stumped. That's when Merlin comes to my rescue. Designed by the famous Cornell University Ornithology department, the app asks you just five questions before generating a list of possible species. It uses GPS technology to include zero in on birds that are likely to be in your particular area. A newer feature allows...MORE you to take a picture of the bird and find a possible identification using a two-step process.

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    Scoot & Doodle is a Google Hangout that's fun for grandparents and grandchildren.
    Courtesy of Scoot & Doodle

    Scoot and Doodle is a website that uses Google Hangout technology to make it easy to interact with family and friends. If you have already installed Google Hangout, it's easy to get started with Scoot and Doodle. It's a perfect setup for long-distance grandparents to draw and play with grandchildren. Scoot and Doodle is well suited for interacting with your teen grands and young adult grandchildren, but it doesn't have the filters that you may want for younger grandchildren.