I’ll admit it, I love tech gadgets. My love doesn’t end at just me. Gadgets for kids are just as cool, sometimes cooler. And when they sneak in a little learning, even better. That’s probably one reason we own a number of LeapFrog products. The kids love the products and I love that they’re playing games to help their reading or math.
Recently we were invited to a LeapFrog event, giving the kids a chance to play with some of their new products. My kids could hardly contain themselves when we entered the room. The room was set-up in three areas: the infant and preschool toys, Tag reading tools, and the new Leapster Explorer.
My youngest loved LeapFrog‘s My Own Laptop (age 24 months to 4 years). She played alphabet games, helping her not only recognize the letters but also the placement on a keyboard. The laptop also has other features once you hook it up to the Internet but she was just playing with it on its own. It’s a nice compact size too, with a built-in handle making it easy to carry around.
At the reading table the kids played with the Tag and the Tag Junior. We own both of these and the kids love them (see our review on the Tag and the Tag Junior). My son and youngest daughter were interested in some of the new books, like Star Wars: Clone Wars, Sponge Bob and Toy Story 3.
LeapFrog makes great early education products but most of them lean toward the younger toddler/preschooler aged child. My oldest, now 8, loves the Tag system and still enjoys using it though it’s really designed to aid early readers. She loves the interactive aspect of the reading system, with games and activities built into a story. So when we saw the new Tag Map System, both my daughter and I were intrigued. This is a fold out, double-sided map that works with the Tag pen and helps kids with geography. There’s a United States map as well as a World map.
Another great learning toy coming from LeapFrog this summer is the Leapster Explorer. This looks similar to the original Leapster 2 but offers a larger screen, new titles and the ability to connect and interact within a new online world. All 3 of my kids were mesmerized by this, but especially my older two. With my kids’ increasing interest in handheld gaming devices (and they are great for road trips), it’s nice to see one that offers educational fun.
I’m looking forward to trying out some of these new LeapFrog items first hand (well, actually my kids are looking forward to it) and sharing our thoughts and reviews right here.