10 Free Back-To-School Apps Every Parent Needs

Sending the kids back to school is akin to setting those New Year’s resolutions in January. It’s a clean slate and a period (however brief) of good intentions. Make the most of this optimism with these 10 smartphone and tablet apps to help you stay organized, help lend a hand with homework, and even help add some extra learning fun.  

We talked with teachers, principals and other educational experts about their favorite apps, and then we gave them a try to see how they worked. What follows is a list of our front runners, all designed to help you and your family get the school year off on the right foot. The best part? All of these apps are free. 

Looking for more parenting tips, back-to-school related and otherwise? Sign up for our free newsletters to have them delivered straight to your inbox.  

BASIS Independent Manhattan to Open in Fall 2017

School searches can be fraught with stress, but searching for the right fit in Manhattan seems to multiply the tension tenfold...at least! Whether you're searching for a Pre-K program, elementary school, middle school or beyond, finding the right fit for your child is paramount. From public to private to charter, there are so many factors to consider and the landscape is ever- changing.

If you're a Manhattan-based family in the market for a school next year, you've got a great new option: BASIS Independent Schools is set to open its first Manhattan school on the Upper West Side in fall 2017. Serving kids in kindergarten through grade 8, the aim of BASIS Independent is to build well-rounded individuals who are challenged by the schools' accelerated liberal arts and sciences curriculum.

Weekday Picks for LI Kids: Get Busy, Lil' Athletes

The final Olympic torch has been extinguished, but the competitive fire within so many Long Island kids still burns bright. This week lets your children sink hoops, line frozen ropes or spring into the air. With summer ending soon, there has never been a better time to get outside and get physical. It's also a great time to corral the family and head out to the Hamptons and/or North Fork.

Weekday Picks: Queen Mary, Jewish Music, and Fiesta La Ballona, Aug 22-26

For Angelenos who have not yet made it to Long Beach this summer, Wednesday is the day to do it: admission to the majestic Queen Mary is free after three. If you can hang around until 7pm (and I confess this is more for my movie buff side than my mommy side), there is a cool lecture on the powerful women of early Hollywood which profiles two of the Queen Mary’s most celebrated passengers, Mary Pickford and Frances Marion. Alas, my kids have returned to school; otherwise, I would surely drag my tween age daughter to this one.

Though summer is winding down, there are still many outdoor movies and concerts to enjoy. My favorite this week is in Beverly Hills where Concerts on Cañon highlights Jewish music with Under the Stars with Wise; the Stephen S. Wise temple brings Israeli, Sephardic, and Yiddish songs to the grassy area of the Montage Hotel. L'Chaim!

My daughter will be leading the way to Culver City on Friday night for one of her favorite annual events: Fiesta La Ballona. This is a neighborhood carnival that she and her friends look forward to every year.

Find more ideas in Mommy Poppins’ Event Calendar, Monthly GoList and Weekly Newsletter.

Weekday Picks for Boston Kids: Free Fun Every Day

Summer camp, day trips, and weekend getaways – including camping for the first time – have created lots of magical moments for my family this summer, but they've also almost completely emptied our piggy banks, and we still have school supplies to buy. That's why this week's picks are all free. Thanks in part to the 100th anniversary celebration of the National Parks Service, there's a boatload of free events to choose from: options include a free ferry ride to the Boston Harbor Islands National Park (pictured). Plus, from the much-anticipated annual Children's Festival in Franklin Park to a Rosie the Riveter invasion of the Charlestown Navy Yard, there's something free and fun to do every day this week.

Our Event Calendar is chock full of more things to do, piggy-bank approved.

Weekday Picks: Hot Air Balloons, Family Concert, Summer Fair: August 20-24, 2016

Summer fun is slowly coming to an end and CT kids will be heading back to school in the next few weeks. Thankfully, there's still time for some last blasts of summer fun; our end of summer bucket list has 25 excellent ideas on how to end summer on a high note. 

The Event Calendar is continually updated with free events, activities, and the best things to do in CT so check back often and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest to be sure you don't miss a thing.

Weekday Picks for Westchester Kids: Kids' Yoga, Chocolate Tournament

If camp is over, school’s still out and your kids are bouncing off the walls, look no further than Mommy Poppins! We’re here all summer long to help you and your family stay out of each other’s hair and get the most of what’s left of summer fun in Westchester.

This week offers loads of fun options for families, including a delectable Chocolate Tournament for the chocoholics among us. Get your downward dog on at Yoga for Youngsters, or grab a shovel and hoe to engage in suburban farming at "Veggies Rock" Garden.

These are just a few of our top picks for the coming week, and all of them are FREE! Read on for details on these and other highlights. Also, be sure to peruse our Event Calendar for more ideas!

Weekday Fun in NJ: Sing-Along, Dance Party, Toddler Fun, Birds

I don’t know about you, but I’m in denial that the summer is winding down. Luckily, summer activities are far from over in this next-to-last week of August. Send the little ones for camp adventures at My Gym’s Summer Fun Half Days and Museum of Early Trades & Crafts’ Camp in a Day. Tots have a busy week with Tod Squad, Tinkergarten and Tot Tours: Music Makers.

Cool off this week with these yummy ice cream spots around NJ, or one of these 25 fun ideas for the kids, from water slides to indoor spots to chill. Or mix things up this week with a fun day trip. We have loads of ideas in our NJ Day Trip Guide.

And don’t forget to check out our Event Calendar for even more options!

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