As well as his other toys, like his train set, puzzles and building blocks, Mikey loves to play video games. The Leapfrog LeapsterGS is an award winning handheld games console (for ages 4 – 9) that has a number of different game cartridges available as well as downloadable apps. The games available incorporate use of the LeapsterGS’ many features: a camera, sound recorder, motion sensor, stylus and button controls.
Since the LeapsterGS arrived in the mail, Mikey has been enthralled with it. He uses the camera to take photos around the house, which he can then draw on and decorate with the stylus using one of the apps. He loves to play on the apps that were included with the console, including one called Escape of the Sillies where he can incorporate his own photos into the game. As a parent, I like the game because it helps build mathematics skills as he has to use number recognition to help the Sillies escape.
As well as downloadable apps, ebooks and videos, there are various different game cartridges for the LeapsterGS that are also available for purchase. These games are longer and more in depth than the apps, a number of them also feature some of your children’s favourite cartoon characters. Mikey’s favourite games so far are:
Phineas and Ferb, which incorporates science problems into the main gameplay. Players learn about the conductive properties of different materials, so that they can complete a circuit. There are also puzzles that use logic and spatial reasoning as a part of the game, as well as simple math questions which you complete in order to power up your vehicle.
Dora the Explorer (pictured), which incorporates social studies into the game play. Players learn about the different cultures that Dora visits and the Spanish vocabulary has been a great compliment to the Spanish that Mikey is already learning in school.
Each of the games automatically adjusts itself to the players skill level, so as Mikey progresses and gets better at the games the puzzles become progressively more challenging. If you have more than one child, you can add different profiles on the LeapsterGS so that each child’s skill level is recorded. Then, when you connect the LeapsterGS to a computer, you can go online you check your child’s progress in each game and the skills that they have been learning.
Both Mikey and I are big fans of the LeapsterGS, I love the great quality of the console itself and that the games all have staying power, he will play them for a long time! Mikey has already put in a request for the Spongebob Squarepants game cartridge for Christmas to add to the games he already has.
There is so much more that I can say about this console, we have been so impressed with it, so please ask in the comments if you have any questions or you can take a look at the Leapfrog Website.
I think the LeapsterGS would make a great Christmas gift!
Disclaimer: I was sent a Leapfrog LeapsterGS and games for review as a Leapfrog Parent. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.