Linux Apps

10 Best Linux Educational Software for Your Kids

Best Linux Educational Software for Childrens
Written by Martins D. Okoi

The apps that we cover are usually ones for professionals, hobbyists, students, etc – mostly adults. But children use computers too, in fact, now more than ever, and the awesome Linux platform has a variety of software to keep them engaged and learning things.

Today, we bring you the 15 best Linux educational software for kids.

1. Kanagram

Kanagram is a KDE letter-order game that aims to build children’s vocabulary by teaching them words. It features a responsive GUI, several word lists, a word list editor, and a system that enables hints and cheats (which reveals the complete word).

The aim of the game is to put letters in the correct order to form words and there is neither a time limit nor a limit on the number of tries.

Kanagram - Letter Order Game

Kanagram – Letter Order Game

Install Kanagram on Ubuntu based distributions using following command.

$ sudo apt-get install kanagram

2. GCompris

GCompris is an awesome suite of applications with 100+ engaging activities such as drawing, algebra, quizzes, reading practice, memory games, tic-tac-toe, chess, etc.

GCompris is available on the most popular platforms, is targetted and children between the ages of 2 and 10, and it is available in 50+ languages.

GCompris - Educational Software Suite

GCompris – Educational Software Suite

Install GCompris on Linux distributions using following commands.

$ wget http://gcompris.net/download/qt/linux/gcompris-qt-0.91-Linux64.sh
$ chmod u+x gcompris-qt-0.91-Linux64.sh
$ sudo ./gcompris-qt-0.91-Linux64.sh

3. Tux Paint

Tux Paint is a cross-platform award-winning drawing program targetted at children between the ages of 3 and 12 and it is used in schools to teach children how to paint using computer software.

It combines a simple UI with bold icons and texts, fun sound effects, an interactive nix mascot, etc.

TuxPaint - Drawing Software for Kids

TuxPaint – Drawing Software for Kids

Install Tux Paint on Ubuntu based distributions using following commands.

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:secretlondon/ppa
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install tuxpaint

4. ChildsPlay

ChildsPlay is a free app for Linux and Windows platforms featuring a collection of educational activities for children including the English alphabets, spelling, maths, Pacman, puzzles, etc.

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ChildsPlay also aims to teach children eye-hand coordination by making them use the mouse and keyboard. It comprises tools that enable data logging, OpenOffice reports, activity development in Python/PyGame, etc and also features a plug-in system that enables you to manage different games to fit your preference.

ChildsPlay - Educational Activities for Kids

ChildsPlay – Educational Activities for Kids

Install ChildsPlay on Ubuntu based distributions using following commands.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install childsplay

5. KStars

The KStars app is part of the KDE Education project and it is an astronomy software with an accurate simulation of the night sky from any location in the world at any time. It includes 100 million+ stars, comets, asteroids, the sun and moon, etc.

This app is perfect for teachers, students, and amateur astronomers thanks to its list of advanced features including a FOV editor, an Attitude vs. Time tool, a Sky Calendar tool, and a “What’s up tonight” tool.

KStars - Astronomy Software

KStars – Astronomy Software

Install KStars on Ubuntu based distributions using following commands.

$ sudo apt-add-repository ppa:mutlaqja/ppa
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install indi-full kstars-bleeding

6. KWordQuiz

KWordQuiz is an open-source general-purpose flashcard app for learning vocabulary and concepts in various other subjects like anatomy, music, history, etc. whose files you can download for free.

KWordQuiz uses the hvtml file format and because it is the KDE version of the windows program WordQuiz, all its files are compatible with the app.

KWordQuiz Flashcard Program

KWordQuiz Flashcard Program

Install KWordQuiz on Ubuntu based distributions using following commands.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install kwordquiz

7. Scratch

Scratch is a visual programming language and online community that aims to teach people (especially children) how to program using simple block-like interactions. Its projects are online but it get be set up on Linux distros to work offline.

Scratch - Create Stories and Games

Scratch – Create Stories and Games

See how to install Scratch on Ubuntu and other distros here.

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8. Celestia

Celestia is a free and cross-platform real-time 3D simulation app that lets you visualize space by exploring the universe in 3 dimensions. It allows you to travel beyond the galaxy with seamless movement with excellent zoom capabilities and visuals of comets, stars, planets, asteroids, etc.

What’s cooler is that Celestia supports add-ons that add more space objects to the app and it serves as an interactive planetarium.

Celestia - 3D Visualization of Space

Celestia – 3D Visualization of Space

Install Celestia on Ubuntu based distributions using following commands.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install celestia

9. TuxMath

TuxMath is an application that presents mathematics in the form of a game where you take on the role of the main character, Tux, who is to protect his planet from math problems which literally rain down.

The aim of the TuxMath is to improve the mental agility of anyone playing it and that’s why the problems rain down faster after each level you pass – definitely an excellent pick for kids learning maths.

TuxMath - Learning Arithmetic Game

TuxMath – Learning Arithmetic Game

Install TuxMath on Ubuntu based distributions using following commands.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install tuxmath

10. MAPLE

MAPLE is a proprietary math software that reportedly houses the most powerful math engine in the world and it features math problems that are straightforward to interpret, visualize, investigate and solve.

It can also be used to develop 3D simulations for math functions, to manipulate, visualize, and analyze data, and to solve matrix and calculus problems – features that researchers and engineers use for professional work. Both you and your kids can have a go at it.

There are other educational apps that are worthy of mention e.g. the awesome online math-oriented app suite GeoGebra, and KDE Edu Suite but my list ends here.

Do you know other applications to add to the list? The comments section is down below.

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About the author

Martins D. Okoi

Martins Divine Okoi is a graduate of Computer Science with a passion for Linux and the Open Source community. He works as a Graphic Designer, Web Developer, and programmer.