Favorite Apps for Family Time in 2022

Recommendations for the new year.

By Taylor Burton, Founder of Till Financial

If spending more time with the family is one of your goals for 2022, more power to you. Few things are as satisfying, provided you keep it fresh and fun. There are plenty of apps to help you do that. The best can help you spark your kids’ imagination and engage them in worthwhile activities.

Here are some of our favorite apps for family time. Tackle your kids' spending, have fun together indoors or out, learn something new, get organized, or unwind at the end of a busy day. Cheers to a healthy and productive 2022.

Merlin Bird ID – Add a whole new dimension to a walk in the woods or a stroll around the neighborhood by encouraging your kids to spot the birds hiding in plain sight. Make a game of it: See how many different birds you can find and how many you can name. Merlin Bird ID can help you identify your feathered friends in moments. Just describe the color, size, and behavior of the bird and indicate when and where you saw it. Or use your phone to snap a photo or record a birdsong. The app’s learning algorithm can help you identify over 3,500 bird species and compile a list of your sightings. It’s a great way to start a fun, lifelong hobby.

BetterSleep – After a hectic day, or an overload of sugar, it can be tough to wind down and even tougher to fall into a restful sleep. And when the kids can’t sleep, neither can you! BetterSleep, previously known as Relax Melodies, can take the stress out of bedtime. Listen to bedtime stories, peaceful nature sounds, or calming music, or try a guided meditation or controlled breathing exercise. Zzzzzz, at last.

Till – Teaching kids how to manage money is critical, but many parents don’t know where to begin. When parents pay for everything, children have no chance to learn about bills, budgets, and savings until they’re on their own. Our Till app offers a great way to help kids develop smart spending skills by doing just that - earning, spending, and saving. Designed for kids up to 18, the fee-free app includes a debit card that gives them control over their money. Children learn firsthand about managing their finances, while parents offer guidance as needed.

Stack the States 2 – Take the family on a virtual tour of all 50 states with an app that makes geography fun. No drills or memorization involved — play games, take quizzes and watch animated states come to life in this colorful, dynamic game. Discover state nicknames, capitals, geographic locations, 3D models of famous landmarks, and much more. This latest version, Stack the States 2, includes a 3D interactive map, new questions, and bonus games. In addition, a voice mode lets preschoolers who can’t read join in the fun.

Sky Guide X – Explore the universe with this excellent astronomy app, perfect for stargazers young and old. Point your phone at the sky and Sky Guide X will depict and identify the stars, planets, and constellations you’re seeing. A time travel option lets you see how the night sky looked on a specific date in history, maybe the day you were born or during historical events. You can also change your observation location to be anywhere on the planet, including the opposite hemisphere.

Duolingo – Challenge your family to learn Spanish, Chinese, Klingon from Star Trek, or any of a few dozen other languages with this popular, easy-to-use app. Duolingo makes it painless, with game-like lessons, colorful graphics, and cute characters. The bite-sized lessons take just a few minutes a day, and fun challenges and achievement rewards keep you motivated. The app’s mascot, a green owl named Duo, will even cheer you on and encourage you to hit your goals.

Cozi – Figuring out who has to be where and when can get pretty confusing when you’re juggling after-school games, orthodontia appointments, piano lessons, and birthday parties for your school-age kids. A family calendaring app can save your sanity — and make sure they don’t miss soccer practice or the dance recital! Cozi is a great tool for keeping the whole gang on track and on time. Organize your schedule, alert your family to upcoming appointments, and create to-do lists, grocery lists, and meal plans with this easy-to-use app.


Taylor Burton is the founder of Till Financial, the first collaborative family financial tool that empowers kids to become smarter spenders. It replaces awkward family conversations about money with real actions and experiential learning, teaching kids how to spend wisely with its fee-free app and debit card. For more information, please visit www.tillfinancial.io.

Top image © fizkes / Adobe Stock