In Eva's world of princesses, fairies and make believe, it is sometimes difficult to find toys that are not only fun but educational to play with. That's why we were thrilled to be sent a LeapStart Junior from LeapFrog to test out.
Eva is now nearly 4 and attends pre-school for 2.5 hours everyday. I can already see an improvement with her language and reading but we find it quite difficult to teach her these skills at home without knowing whether she's actually concentrating or learning.
She adores reading but a lot of the time I think she is memorising the books we read rather than reading the words. We also find it incredibly difficult trying to teach her to write and problem solve. This is all new to us so i'm sure we'll get better at it but for now we have the LeapStart Junior to help us.
The LeapStart Junior is an interactive learning system designed for nursery and pre-school aged children (perfect for Eva) and teaches essential life and school skills. It works using replayable activity books which you can buy separately but it comes with a sampler book. It requires 2 AA batteries and costs £39.99.
The easy grip stylus is used to activate audio responses and play activities on each page of the book. The books contain over 30 activities such as jokes, songs and games which help little ones to trace, compose their own music, maths, teamwork and searching for letters etc.
As you can see from the pictures, the LeapStart has been a huge hit with Eva. I'll admit that I didn't think she would use it as much as she has because we do have an iPad in the house and therefore she plays games and reads books on that. However, I think Eva loves the independence that this can give her. She is able to fully use it herself without any guidance from us. She finds the stylus easy to grip and use. The size of the LeapStart itself is ideal for her to hold and it is very lightweight.
It's a very robust product. As you can imagine it has been dropped and bashed about rather a lot and it is still perfectly intact.
We love the fact that it's portable. We take it to restaurants, family houses and we recently used it to keep her entertained on a Eurostar train journey.
We will definitely be buying her some more learning books for it, in particular the science and maths books. You can view the full range here, Reading Systems. As she's nearly 4 we are also thinking of getting her the LeapReader. We noticed there are lots of Disney books available with that system and she is a huge fan of anything Disney so she'd love to learn to read those books.
We were also sent a lovely toy for Ophelia. It was the LeapFrog Count and Colours Band. She loves music and is attracted to bright colours, so this was bound to be a winner in her eyes.
The Count and Colours band is led by LeapFrog favourite Scout and costs £14.99. It requires 3 AAA batteries. It has 3 different learning modes which are counting, colours and music.
When Ophelia bashes/presses any of the buttons, this causes Scout to move and sing. This helps her to learn cause and effect. It's amazing how in a short space of time she now understands what happens when she presses it.
We've been so impressed with how much she likes it that we're definitely going to ask Santa to bring her a few more LeapFrog toys for christmas. They are bright, colourful, fun and educational. Everything a parents wants in a toy.
*We were kindly gifted these toys from leapfrog but as always all my opinions are my own*