Civics education — understanding the fundamental underpinnings of our democracy — is vitally important now more than ever. Here are some great apps for teaching the next generation about how our nation works, plus two that help kids dial in state names and capitals.
Win the White House Perfect for an election year, this app helps students run their own presidential campaign and breaks down the importance of debating the issues, media campaigns and fundraising. Pro tip: Check out the other civics-oriented offerings from iCivics including the Do I Have the Right? app. Free. iPhone, iPad and Android.
Presidents vs. Aliens This app quizzes players on each U.S. President, including events during his presidency. Players also need to be able to identify each president by his portrait, and that’s where the aliens come in. Get it right, and you can flick the president’s head at a gaggle of aliens to spin them off-screen. $1.99, iPhone, iPad and Android.
I Love Potatoes Kids can learn about conservation and coming together to promote social change in this app featuring adorable animated potatoes. The characters are based on real-life social innovators and the app lets kids dig into their backgrounds. Free. iPhone, iPad and Android.
Geography Drive USA Road trips are on hold for a while, but you can still explore the nooks and crannies of all 50 states via this app. Kids start off by choosing a car in which they’ll tool cross-country, visiting every state along the way. They’ll learn fun facts about each place they visit, then answer a quiz to earn enough money to buy more “gas” so they can keep driving. $2.99, iPad and Android.
Stack the States and Stack the States 2 A nice blend of gameplay and learning, kids must match the states with their capitals and other important landmarks. They can even unlock more mini-games and play against family members. $2.99, Android, Kindle Fire.