What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that the American Academy of Pediatrics discourages television viewing for babies under age 2, in part because it takes away time that babies spend interacting with adults. Likewise, Common Sense Media does not recommend media -- including video games -- for kids under 2. This program is meant to be used as a tool to enhance child and adult interaction. Other than in the introduction, the software program doesn't talk to the child -- the parent or caregiver must generate the interaction and commentary about what's happening on the screen.
What's it about?
In GIGGLES COMPUTER FUNTIME FOR BABY: SHAPES, bright, bold geometric shapes change when a child whacks the keyboard. Hitting any key or keys will cause something new to happen on the screen. Your child can have fun pounding away on the keyboard without you having to worry that your computer files will be corrupted. If you or your child moves the computer mouse, adorable animals glide across the screen -- clicking the mouse results in geometric-shaped confetti shooting across the screen.
The software offers 14 activities, 10 of which feature colored shapes that slide, dive, rotate, or even play peek-a-boo. In one of the four bonus games, the game's mascot, Flopsy the Dog, wiggles into outlandish positions each time a key on the keyboard is touched. In another, kids can make animals hop out of hiding places and make sounds by tapping a key.
Is it any good?
In many ways, the kind of communication a parent creates with Giggles is very similar to the kind of communication a parent generates while reading a book -- "That square is blue ... where's the pink circle?" For families in which young children are drawn to the computer because of adult usage, this can provide an amusing way to play with your kids and introduce them to simple cause-and-effect scenarios using the computer.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the funny things happening on the screen. Also, parents can help kids learn new vocabulary through their comments and questions ("That square is blue ... where's the pink circle?").