Oh, I can’t even begin to describe my joy when a LeapFrog box arrives in the mail for me! There are a few LeapFrog products that I absolutely can’t live without in my classroom.
1. The Letter Factory DVD
I’ve mentioned a time or 100 that this is the best product EVER made by any educational company. I swear by this video and show it to my kindergarten class until they are singing the little songs that go along with every letter.
2. The Letter Factory Board Game
Well, duh. The game goes along with the DVD and it’s just brilliant. It is no longer made, but you can find them on ebay.
3. The Tablets
I have now been the proud owner of every single tablet made by LeapFrog, and they just keep getting better.
I use the tablets in my classroom during several times of the day. I have them available during our Center time for kids to play on, during our Literacy block when I want them using the ebooks, and during our Math Centers. My favorite thing about the tablets is that even when kids are “just playing” and have no specific activities that I have selected for them, they are still learning all the time! Kart racing is one of the favorite games for my kids because they can race against each other, while they are each on their own tablet. Now, you would think that a car race isn’t educational, but in order to power up their cars they have to solve math problems. I’m telling you, learning is embedded everywhere!
The new LeapPad Platinum is one of the bigger tablets. The LeapPad, LeapPad2, and LeapPad3 are not quite as large. Personally, I really like the large screen and hefty feeling of the LeapPad Ultra and the LeapPad Platinum. The LeapPads are super durable. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times they are dropped by my kindergartners each day! My only complaint about the tablet itself is the sylus that is attached. It has a squishy top on the stylus that is kind of cool, but it was torn up within the first month. If the stylus is my only complaint, then I’m ok with that!
As for the content, here are a few of my favorite things:
*Kid-Safe Web – LeapSearch is a kid safe web browser that has age appropriate content picked by the LeapFrog Learning Experts.
*New Imagicard Learning Games – Ok, these are pretty cool. The interactive trading cards come to life on the LeapFrog tablets. Kids can use the camera to bring their characters to life and unlock more ways to play.
Some of the games include THE LETTER FACTORY (woo hoo!), PAW Patrol, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Ummm, I can hardly wait to see how the kindergarten boys are going to fall in love with the Ninja Turtle game!
*E-books – During our Daily 5 time of our kindergarten literacy block, I tell the kids that I want them reading or listening to reading. If they are using the tablets, their only choice is to pick an ebook. Although, I think I will add in the Letter Factory games this year. There are tons of different options for ebooks. Frozen is the HUGE favorite, but I also have a space book that is a close second. I was surprised that the fairy tales stories are not chosen too often and that the Pet Pals IS chosen. Kids surprise me sometimes. I often think they will love one thing and then they pick something that I think won’t be a favorite. Here’s a picture of the Sophia the First book.
Overall, I have to say this is the best tablet yet! It’s one of those MUST-HAVE items for young kids. I use these in my classroom, but my daughter also used them when she was younger. As I mentioned above, I love that learning is constantly embedded into every single activity. If there are two things your young kids need, they are: 1) The Letter Factory DVD 2) A LeapPad Tablet – and spend the few extra dollars to buy the bigger one. You won’t be sorry!
**The opinions in this post are all my own. I was provided a LeapPad Platinum in exchange for reviewing the product.**