Glimpse: Learning is fun with Leapfrog! GIVEAWAY!!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Learning is fun with Leapfrog! GIVEAWAY!!

Leapfrog is a great toy company whose toys mainly have an educational component. We own a few things from them, have seen a few more at friends houses, and now, recently, we've received 3 new additions to our toy collection for review! Basically, on anything we've seen, the entertainment value has been high, and it's really great to have an educational twist as well. Our kids have picked up a lot through playing, without even realizing that they're learning!

Here's a little bit about each toy we received - read on for a great giveaway, and stay tuned for another Leapfrog review next week, with another great giveaway as well!


Leapster Explorer:

This is a handheld gaming device, and our first foray into such devices in our family. We've been reluctant, mainly because most of the games we've seen are arcade-style with little to no value beyond entertainment (read brain stimulation or overstimulation). From what we've experienced so far with Leapster Explorer, the games are fun and there is an educational element, while still appealing to the gamer in your child (or you!). Our 5-year old son easily operates the Leapster Explorer (designed for ages 4-9). Our nearly 3-year old son would love to be able to manipulate it like his brother does, but it is too advanced for him yet.  He does become rather "hooked" at times, and is hard to detach from his playing, but that's more to do with his character than with the Explorer. :)

The Leapster Explorer comes with a code that allows you to download a game from the Leapfrog collection. When you first log on to the Leapfrog website, there are lots of cool games/ videos and e-stories that you can download after you purchase them. Your code is valid for a small selection of these apps, which is somewhat disappointing. However, the stuff we did download turned out to be very cool, and the kids are enjoying their game and story very much (we had 2 codes).

We did have some issues with connecting our Leapster Explorer to the computer. The theory is that you can connect to the Leapfrog site to download new apps, parents can follow their child's progress, and the child can make use of LeapWorld (something we've not had a chance to try yet). Each time we attempted to connect, we were unsuccessful, and it wasn't clear what was happening (or not). Finally my husband (who works with computers) decided to connect our computer directly to the Internet through the modem instead of through our network (and router). And it worked! Unfortunately, this means that we won't be connecting the Explorer to our computer very often, as we have to change our connection settings each time (and back again). Luckily, the Explorer works very well on it's own, but we can't really access all of it's functionality easily.

Along with the Explorer, we were sent the game Ben 10: Ultimate Aliens. This game teaches some geography skills, animal facts, life science and map skills. Mostly it's just good fun, although I'm not very keen on games that require you to "kill" the bad guys - and there are plenty in Ben 10! Jonathan loves this game, and Richard (dad!) has been seen playing it as well. A suggestion for future programming is to allow you to save your game at any given moment, rather than at completed levels only, because your mom may call you that your "screen time is up" and then you have to start over at the beginning of the current level if you can't persuade her to let you finish it off. We've had many struggles about this one. :)

Mainly, our experience with the Leapster Explorer has been very positive, and Jonathan really enjoys playing it. He really wants more games to go with it - cartridges are available at the Leapfrog shop online, and at various retailers. The Explorer can be connected to earphones, for when no one else wants to hear it :) and has a volume button, something I'm really happy with, as it seems that many toys are too loud. Jonathan likes that you can add games. He also enjoys playing with the virtual pet app - part of this is letter writing, where you trace letters with the stylus.

Tag Jr. (ages 2-4):


The Tag system is a wand-like thing that, when pointed at special books, it reads the pages and individual words. Tag Jr. has been specially modified for littler children, who aren't ready for reading words yet but just want to listen to the story, and who haven't the motor skills to point at a specific word yet. The Tag Jr. book pal, an alien-looking pointer, is held in the fist, rather than in the fingers, and it reads the whole page. Characters or items on the pages make sounds or speak when pointed at as well. The book pal comes with a sample book, and more books are available for purchase. Many familiar titles are available, and the reading voice is pleasant and enthusiastic. Daniel really enjoys the extra sounds made by various characters on the page  Some even ask you a question (to find something else, by a clue) and when you answer correctly (by clicking on the correct item), praise is given. Tag Jr. has 2 volume settings, something we parents appreciate! Once again, you need to connect to the Internet to download the audio files, and this happened without any problems at all! You can customize your book pal so that when you turn it on and off, it greets you by name, and this is something Daniel really likes! It's obviously his! :)

Chat and Count Cell Phone (ages 18-36 months):


So far, this is the nicest "play phone" we've seen, and we've had several! :) The sounds are pleasant, without being annoying. The volume control actually works, and even the "loud" setting is acceptable. There are fun songs, and counting routines. For instance, when you press on number 7, it shows you 7 pictures and makes 7 noises! The puppy pal (visible on the screen sometimes) "speaks with you" and encourages you along. The puppy looks a lot like Scout, a stuffed interactive toy for kids ages 6-36 months, and something we would consider buying for Annalies. Daniel enjoys the phone, and has been learning a few numbers along with it. Annalies is a bit young for the phone yet, although when she presses buttons randomly, stuff happens, and she loves that! The buttons are easy to push, and I like that the numbers are very clearly printed. Also, it's cool that it has the letters under each number, just like a real phone. Other toy phones we've had really didn't look like a phone - I think part of this one's appeal is that it's less "toy-like" and more realistic-looking.

WIN IT!

One lucky Glimpse reader will win a Tag Jr. - perfect for someone who's going back to nursery school, or just not quite old enough for school yet, but still wants to join the reading crowd! Visit Leapfrog's website and tell us about another Leapfrog toy your family would enjoy.





**Disclosure: The products mentioned above have been given free of charge from Harbinger Ideas on Leapfrog's behalf in exchange for being featured on Glimpse. The opinions expressed in this post are those of Glimpse and have not been influenced in any other way. Please see the full Terms of use.

61 comments:

edmontonjb said...

My family would enjoy the Leapster Explorer

stephy905 said...

Another Leapfrog toy my family would enjoy is the Peek-a-Shoe™ Talking Octopus - English Version

http://shop.leapfrog.com/leapfrog/ca/en_CA/Peek-a-Shoe%22-Talking-Octopus-English-Version/productDetail/New/MILESTONES81202/ca_cat80048?navAction=jump&navCount=0&categoryNav=false

stephy905@hotmail.com

Owen's Mom said...

We are anxiously awaiting the Leap Pad out later this year... and I want the camera for the Leapster Explorer
andrea.kruse at gmail dot com

Carolyn Staples said...

LEAP PAD!!! It would be PERFECT for my 4 year old son, but would be great for my day care kids too!!

VickeC said...

Peek-a-Shoe™ Talking Octopus - English Version

NW Homesteader said...

We would love either the leap pad or the click start!
alklong at hotmail dot com

Mummy Kim said...

we would like the lettersaurus
mcintosh dot kimberley at gmail dot com

Denise G said...

Leapster Explorer

ontariohappychick at gmail dot com

Heidi said...

my son has been asking for a Leapad

noreen said...

My ownleaptop

Sweet Panda said...

My kids would enjoy the LeapPad

sweetpanda2010 at gmail dot com

Dianne said...

My Pal Violet the customizable puppy is a fun toy for my youngest granddaughter.

PaulineMilner said...

I know my young Niece would love the Count and Scan Shopper, English Version. She loves to go shopping!

Thanks for the great giveaway. ~Pauline

dod@rogers.com

Annie1 said...

My grandkidlets would love the Peek-a-Shoe™ Talking Octopus - English Version


ty

nancyrobster at gmail dot com

TwoPeasInAPodOneDayAtATime said...

the leapster 2
taylorcmarves at aol dot com

Leah said...

My First Book: "Hide-and-Seek at the Farm" - the French Version looks so adorably perfect for my sweet son! : )

Thanks so very much for this fabulous give~away! : )

leahita[at]gmail[dot]com

Alesha said...

We would like the leap pad.

aleshafm@hotmail.com

debijackson said...

leapster explorer http://twitter.com/#!/jacksondeb/status/104928964061040640

Robyn said...

We would like the new Leap Pad!!!!!!

ksceviour said...

The Leapster Explorer is something my nephew would enjoy!
ksceviour at hotmail dot com

Terri said...

My family would LOVE to have the LeapPad. :)

Snowy Summer said...

My daughter will surely love Peek-a-Shoe Talking Octopus - English Version

spdls0215@yahoo.com

Elizabeth Pyo said...

We want the leap pad :)

Anonymous said...

we'd also love the leapster 2

asheardy@yahoo.com

carschick2000 said...

i think my kids would love the leap pad especially my guy who loves technology!

carschick2000@yahoo.ca

Claude said...

my daughter would get a kick out of the
Chat and Count Cell Phone!

Claude Campeau

Carrie said...

my kids love my iPod so I'm sure the Leapster Explorer would be a HUGE hit!

bison61 said...

my grandson would like the Fridge Words - English version

tiramisu392 (at) yahoo.com

Pam said...

My kids would love the Leapster Explorer too.

melacan at hotmail dot com

andalene said...

I think the Count & Learn toy would be good for us.
abrennan09@hotmail.com

Monica said...

Definitely a Leap Pad!!

Cindy0462 said...

the leapster explorer is awesome!
cindy0462@gmail.com

Amy C said...

My family would like the Count & Draw

flowerchild said...

my family would enjoy the leap pad
thanks
flower_child_23(at)hotmail(dot)com

Amy said...

my daughter would also like the Fridge Magnetic Toys
amym_brown @hotmail.com

leanne_mac said...

I like the leapfrog explorer
leannemacg at gmail.com

Belinda M said...

my family would like the My First Book - Hide & Seek at the Farm

Anonymous said...

The Leapster Explorer would be fantastic for our long drives to see grandma.
cardewcasa@hotmail.com

Bree said...

My boys would like fridge words!

breej23 at hotmail dot com

Shairbearg said...

we would love the world map!

kinneyland said...

we'd love the leap pad

Marryam said...

We'd love the leappad explorer as my son would love it

mariam_b1984 at hotmail dot com

frugalmommieof2 said...

the regular leapfrog tag looks neat

frugalmommieof2 at gmail.com

Laura said...

I love the Lettersaurus!

Rebecca Graham said...

I like the Leapster2.

rhoneygtn at yahoo dot com

MommaM said...

We would have to have the Thomas & Friends book. shreve_mary@yahoo.com

Fokxxy said...

MY FAMILY would also love the Bilingual Leapstart Learning Table

Jen M said...

I'd love the Fridge Phonics Magnetic Letter Set - English version
jenyasha87 at hotmail dot com

Jean said...

A leap pad would be awesome!

Melissa said...

another awesome leapster toy!!

Amylynn said...

My son would love the My Pal Scout!

bigdisneyfan said...

We would like the Leap Frog Tag to help my kids with their reading.

Me said...

My daughter would love the big Leap Pad

Amy Hollingsworth

Lori S said...

The Clickstart First Computer would be a cool one to have as well!

loridc@gmail.com

corey said...

I think that my son would benefit from the Tag Super Speller - English version.
coreybrennan26@hotmail.com

Kristie said...

My kids would love the Leapster2 :-)

khmorgan_00 [at] yahoo [dot] com

Missy said...

The LeapPad

holm0346 at hotmail dot com

melissa said...

the leapster explorer would be awesome for my son hes off to pre k next week!

melissa
mel91284(at)yahoo(dot)com

moanie said...

We would enjoy the voilet puppy for learning

TonyaHopkins said...

I would love the Leap Pad for my son

Jennifer said...

The Leappad looks super neat too!

jls_wss2003 at yahoo dot com

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