Showing posts with label Toys. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Toys. Show all posts

Friday, June 10, 2011

Today's Reading Tip: Activities For Your LeapFrog TAG Reading System

Do you own a LeapFrog TAG Reading System?  If not, I highly recommend it! This system comes with a "pen" that when placed on top of words or markers in TAG specific books will read the word or story aloud to a child.  I love both of the TAG systems: The TAG (which allows the child to read a whole page/portion of text, or will read word by word), and the TAG Jr. (which has simpler features for a younger child).

I also like that I can incorporate activities to go along with our TAG system, such as:
  • I will put a sticky note on the page with the number of the words "the" on the page and have LoLo find them.  I will do this same activity for every sight word we have previously worked on.  Then, I just leave the notes in the book so he can play again later.
  • I will say a word to LoLo and have him use the TAG word to find it.  Since he is a very early reader, I choose an easy consonant-vowel-consonant word like 'cat' and have him find it with his eyes and check his answer with his TAG pen.
  • I will ask him questions about the story and have him find the answer with his TAG pen.  This works best for one-word answers that are specific in the text.  An example would be "who found the bone?" and he points the TAG pen to the word Scooby.
If you do not yet have a TAG pen and books, what are you waiting for?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Love Eric Carle? Check out this cute toy line!

When it comes to kid's books that I love to read over and over, I think of The Very Hungry Caterpillar from Eric Carle.  Sure the story is pretty cute, but my favorite part is the artwork.  Over the years his style of art has become so recognizeable to me that when I was shopping around in the baby toy department a while back, I couldn't help but notice the Eric Carle toy line right away!

I bought the pull-string sun shown above, and Mr. F loves it to pieces.  It plays a sweet little melody (not an annoying doorbell-type song) and has little flashing LED lights in the plush portion of the sun.

I also purchased the play dome seen below:

This play dome was great when Mr. F started crawling and he loves to look in the mirror and pull the butterfly string to play music.  I wish I had bought it earlier when he was into tummy time.  I love the bright colors and designs that are synonymous with Eric Carle.

I was so surprised to find out just how many Eric Carle toys are out there.  View the slideshow below to check some more of them out:

Friday, March 18, 2011

Super Why Game Is Super Cute!

If you are like me and like to have your kids watching educational TV shows, you probably watch Super Why! I just love the graphics, the characters, and the different reading skills it teaches (and correctly as well-unlike other shows out there).  So when I was picking out toys for LoLo's 4th birthday I just knew that this game would be a hit. 

I really like how it is simple enough for young players to play (around 4 years and up), and does not have too many rules.  You simply roll the dice, move to the appropriate spot, then pick a card that matches the character you are on.  I would read the card to LoLo and he would do the appropriate action. 

For example:
Alpha Pig with Alphabet Power: Players point to the uppercase letter on the board that matches the lowercase letter on the card.

Wonder Red with Word Power: Players read the words or look at the pictures on the card and say another word or words that rhyme.

Princess Presto with Spelling Power: Players say the word pictured on the card, then point to the first letter or fist two letters of that word on the center of the board.

Super Why with the Power to Read: Players point to the word on the board that should replace the underlined word on the card to make the silly sentence make sense. 

The first player to reach the finish with all 4 different character cards is the winner.

*Makes a great birthday gift!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

The iXL Is Great For Kids Learning To Read

Every year as Christmas time draws near, I begin to stress about what to get the kids that they would really enjoy and use.  With 2 preschoolers in my house (2.5 and 3.5) I always have a hard time figuring out what they want.  Asking is out of the question, given that every commercial they see on tv they want the product.

This year I decided to do a little research and see what was out there as the next big toy.  I found the iXL.  I thought that my 3.5 year old would love it given that he loves Daddy's iPad (and can operate it without help).

The iXL is by Fisher Price and is recommended for ages 3-7; however, it is easy enough for my 2.5 year old.  What it is is a compact computer with a screen, speaker, and an attached pen.  The iXL comes preloaded with one theme pack (monkeys) and you can purchase other themes for around $24.99.  Each theme bundle included a read along story (which I love how it highlights the words as it reads), 2-3 games (educational and non-educational), a drawing pad (you can even upload your own images to draw on), and a writing pad (you can trace letters, write words, etc).

The best thing about the iXL is that it is little kid tough!  My kids have dropped it multiple times, left them open for the baby to drool on, you name it! I also worried that it would chew through batteries; however, the 4 AA batteries seemed to last through a lot of uses.

I purchased mine for $69.99 on sale before Christmas, but the average retail price seems to be $89.99.
I highly recommend this item to anyone with a young child.  As a reading specialist, I love the features it has for reading books, the writing pad, plus the fact that my kids played with it for over an hour on the first use!