Kids, watch this!
Oct 28, 2014 by Paul W.
Dick Tracy would be envious: it’s not just a watch, it’s a camera!
With the Kidizoom Smartwatch, “young photographers can take photos and videos on the go,” VTech says.
The color touchscreen can be set with 50 clock-face designs.
There’s also a voice recorder, with “wacky voice-changing effects,” and four learning games.
VTech’s first portable camera “watch will create an entirely new play experience for kids 3 and older,” the company says.
It’s $60 here.
Baby goes for a drive
Oct 23, 2014 by Paul W.
All right, it’s actually a stationary car — but it encourages your baby to sit up, crawl, pull up, stand & move all around for play inside & out, says Fisher-Price.
The Laugh and Learn Crawl Around Car is a “vehicle for fun” the company says, “fully loaded with busy activities inside and out.”
Your baby can turn the key, honk the horn, turn the steering wheel or shift the gear to activate lights, learn phrases, and sing along to 75 songs and tunes. There are Learning, Music, and Imagination modes to introduce babies to letters, numbers, colors, first words, greetings & more.
It’s $67 here.
An interactive storybook for the iPad can foster a love of classical music in children of all ages. “Hear the beautiful music and get involved!” says developer Infinite Fermata.
The Four Seasons: A Vivaldi Storybook features a kid-friendly arrangement of one of the most beloved pieces of classical music, coupled with “loads of fun interactivity” with which children can make geese sing, or squirrels fly. There’s also art depicting animals and the natural world in all four seasons, and a “gentle wit and rich but simple language to encourage readers of all levels,” the developers say.
It’s $5 here.
Rollin’ and Learnin’
Aug 26, 2014 by Paul W.
“Pack your bag. It’s time for learning fun on the road.”
Your kid might not be old enough to travel the world, but with the Roll & Learn Activity Suitcase, “children learn language as they use their motor skills to explore with imaginative travel play,” says Vtech.
It features an easy-to-grab handle, and rolling wheels which “encourage on-the-go play.”
Pretend travel accessories promote role-play fun, and its greetings introduce children to English and Spanish. There are also 25 melodies and sing-along songs to “keep little ones engaged.”
It’s $37 here.
No, not like that…!
The Electronic Medical Play Set from Castle Toy includes an electronic stethoscope with lights and sounds, a light up thermometer, light up magnifier, patient’s badge, doctor’s badge, and a carry case.
It’s $33 here.
Tablets are getting so affordable you might be tempted to buy a Samsung or HP for your toddler — but Vtech is offering one designed especially for young children, and its only $45 here.
“With hundreds of apps to download, your child will have so much fun, they won’t realize they are learning,” the company says.
The InnoTab 3 Learning App Tablet has a full-sized 4.3-inch color touchscreen, and a “G-Sensor” for game play.
Also, “kids will love taking photos “with the built-in camera that rotates for better shooting angles. There are also 55 special effects, and it can record video as well.
Is it ever to early to get children engaged in programing their own computers? Well, before 4 years of age is too young — but 4-year-olds are the whom this Kickstarter project is aimed at.
The Kibo from KinderLab Robotics is “a robot kit that teaches youngsters fundamentals of programming through intuitive, age- and developmentally-appropriate technology” by showing kids how to customize and personalize their own two-wheeled robot base unit.
Kibo engages four- to seven-year-olds in building instruction sets that control the actions of robots by creating programs, or lines of code, through the use of familiar ‘manipulative’ wooden blocks. Each block represents an action for the robot.
It’s based on research at Tufts University. “It’s important that children grow up with the understanding that technology isn’t magic, but is something that they can learn to master, “the researchers behind the project say.
There’s more information here.
Baby drum set
May 14, 2014 by Paul W.
Kids got rhythm: this new learning toy has three drum pads and cymbal, each with its own unique sound, VTech says.
Your child can play along to nine pre-set melodies in styles including rock, dance and pop, and choose from four different sounds for the drums. Each drum illuminates with an LED light.
It’s $18 here.
Noted by Time Magazine as one of the “toys that will make your kids smarter,” Tiggly Shapes develops motor skills, spatial thinking, creativity, and language.
Toddlers toy with tablets, the company says, and “you might think it’s crazy to let a youngster touch such a pricey device,” but Tiggly Shapes encourages it. The four colorful shapes interact with three free iPad apps: Tiggly Draw, Tiggly Safari, and Tiggly Math. The games encourage creative and critical thinking and aid in motor-skill development. They can be experienced in 8 different languages, including English, Spanish, and Chinese (Mandarin).
They’re $30 here.
Your child’s senses will be running wild as they explore and discover ball play, shape sorting, turning gears and more. VTech says its Grow & Discover Tree House has so many fun activities, “your little one will never want to come out from their tree house play tent.” And that’s a good thing, as the toy “provides a variety of activities to stimulate toddlers senses and help develop important motor skills.”
Babies can drop the balls through the holes and watch them roll, sort the shape sorters, or use the fabric to play peek-a-boo or hide and seek. They’ll play hide and seek, and crawl around the tent and play peek-a-boo through the colorful fabric flaps. There are 20 features to develop fine motor skills and learn about numbers, shapes and more.
It’s $63 here.