The 4 Best Tablets For Kids
As an entertainment and educational tool, tablets have become a ubiquitous part of growing up. The best tablets for kids allows parents to remain in control of content and screen time while delighting and even teaching children.
Some tablets come with access to the Internet and downloadable apps, while others may be limited to the operating system or game/app universe provided by that tablet’s manufacturer. New tablets may come with a limited trial providing access to more content, including books, games, and apps from Amazon FreeTime that can be extended with monthly subscriptions, which usually cost under $10.
Parental controls can give you peace of mind when your child is using a tablet. Controls may include the option to set time limits for certain apps or activities, as well as establishing educational goals. For multiple children using the same tablet, look for one with the ability to create profiles for each kid.
The best tablets for kids are built for taking a fall. Though tablets can be expensive, ideal options for kids are designed with protective cases that help the tablet withstand some bumps and falls. Some may even include a stand for easier viewing, which can be especially helpful if you have older kids who are using their tablets to watch movies and videos.
Screen Time Limits
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends limits on screen time based on age, with no screen time recommended at all for kids younger than 18 to 24 months old. For preschoolers between ages 2 and 5, an hour is the recommended screen time limit, and it should consist of mostly high-quality educational content. With this in mind, I’ve included tablets for learning in these age groups.
Below are the best tablets for kids on Amazon. Each is highly rated with hundreds or even thousands of reviews.
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1. The Best Tablet For Older Kids
For older kids, you'll need a more versatile tablet to hold their interest. This Amazon Fire tablet comes with a year of access to Amazon's FreeTime Unlimited, which includes over 20,000 apps, games, books, videos, plus more educational content from PBS Kids, Nickelodeon, and Disney (and Spanish language content). After the trial, the monthly subscription is then $3 a month.
An 8-inch touchscreen, up to 10 hours of battery life, and sophisticated parental controls make this tablet an excellent choice to invest in as your school-age child grows. The WiFi-capable tablet can also store downloaded content for online viewing, and it has two speakers and front and rear-facing cameras.
With more access, this tablet also has more settings for parents to control. Profiles can be created for up to four children with screen time limits and educational goals. Content can be filtered by age and web browser access can also be protected. Parents can use the tablets in full-access adult mode by entering a passcode in their profile.
This tried-and-true tablet is highly rated with more than 27,000 reviews, and a kid-proof bumper case protects the tablet and comes in blue, pink, or yellow.
A helpful review: “My 6-year-old daughter loves this device. She pretends to be a chemist on one app and in the other app she gets to style hair [...] I like that I can control how long she is able to play entertainment items and have a [time] set up for her to do learning activities. We’ve decided to purchase the upgrades whenever they are available because this is such a great kids device.”
2. A Budget Pick: The Best Tablet Under $100
This older, slightly smaller version of Amazon's Fire tablet is a budget-friendly tablet for kids with no less fanfare or content access. It has an impressive 4.6-star rating with over 40,000 reviews.
This WiFi-capable tablet also comes with a year of access to Amazon FreeTime Unlimited; monthly subscriptions following the free trial are $3 a month. When traveling, this tablet can play downloaded content for up to seven hours.
Parents can set time limits, educational goals, and content filters for up to four profiles. The tablet has front and rear facing cameras, and a kid-proof case with a built-in stand in pink, purple or blue protects the tablet's 7-inch touchscreen.
A helpful review: “Great product! [...] This is AWESOME for moms on a budget [who] want to get their kids something fun to stay busy.”
3. The Best Learning Tablet For Preschoolers
This popular learning tablet comes from an educational children's toy brand you probably recognize. LeapFrog's tablet is loaded with interactive learning content created specifically for preschoolers. Your child gets access to hundreds of learning games and a three-month trial to LeapFrog Academy, an ad-free learning program with thousands of games and activities; after the free trial, monthly subscriptions are $3 to $8. This tablet has WiFi capability, and you can save up to 24 activities for playing offline. You can also download Android and video apps, and this one has forward and rear-facing cameras as well.
Parental control settings allow for time limits and creating profiles for up to five children. There's also a kid-friendly web browser — as children grow, parents can ease up on restrictions. The 7-inch touchscreen resists shattering, and the tablet is protected by a removable bumper case. For on-the-go use, the rechargeable battery lasts more than seven hours.
A helpful review: “I got this for my 4 year old so I can limit her tab[let] time and she doesn't have access to adult YouTube. Its educational, runs smooth, easy set up and she loves it!"
4. The Best Screen-Free "Tablet" For Toddlers
This tablet for toddlers has no screen at all, keeping in line with the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation to avoid them for children younger than 18 to 24 months old. That said, your toddler will love pretending it's the real thing. Parents commented they like how educational this pick is, as it teaches curious toddlers about animal sounds, numbers, colors, and letters.
Buttons to push and bright colors will attract your little one, and there is no need for parental controls, though the volume level can be adjusted.
This tablet has rounded corners that are safe around babies, and the manufacturer says it's been tested to make sure it lasts with frequent use by a toddler. And at just $20, you won't bat an eye if your little one drops it.
A helpful review: “My baby absolutely loves this tablet. He loves the sounds it makes and hitting the the buttons. I like that it's making him practice motor skills by hitting the buttons. And my favorite thing that it does is teaches him counting and the alphabet, which makes me super happy as a mom. I would definitely recommend this toy to other moms because, besides it being so adorable, it’s a great learning tool for your baby.”