LeapFrog Explorer Learning Game: My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that LeapFrog Explorer Learning Game: My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic is a math game inspired by the ponies' journey to retrieve the six Elements of Harmony from long-time villain Discord. Unlike in the TV show and the movies, the ponies have the ability to fly. This takes up much of the game, and the controls can be difficult for kids to figure out. The math lessons build from introductory to more advanced, but kids may need additional explanation and support to grasp the underlying concept of probability.
What kids can learn
Thinking & Reasoning
- analyzing evidence
- part-whole relationships
- problem solving
Engagement, Approach, Support
Frustrating controls and lackluster mini-games mar what could have been a fun romp through a magical world for My Little Pony fans.
Skills start easy and ramp up as kids master them, keeping the game challenging. Math mini-games seem forced, though, with content that doesn't always align with the learning.
The game offers plenty of help. Adults can track a child's progress via the online LeapFrog Learning Path.
What's it about?
When two My Little Pony friends start arguing, they accidentally free bad guy Discord, and the six Elements of Harmony are once again lost. This time, Discord turns the Elements over to villainous Pony doubles. Kids must first figure out how likely it is that a certain type of apple will fall from a tree, and then they stock up on apples by balancing an equal number on each side of a scale. Next, to catch their doppelgangers and stop Discord, they take off in flight, collecting stars along the way. There's a lot of flying before kids catch each double. When kids collect enough stars, they can buy upgrades to help their Ponies fly faster and farther. To get the Element back, kids use probability skills and interpret some basic addition and subtraction word problems.
Is it any good?
LEAPFROG EXPLORER LEARNING GAME: MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC will appeal to kids who are fans of the My Little Pony franchise. Unfortunately, that may be where the sparkle ends. The math-based mini-games aren't all that fun, and the flying is complicated and challenging. For kids who can work past that, there's learning to be had, but they may need some help if they aren't already familiar with the concept of probability. Some kids may enjoy delving into this world, but others will struggle to find the magic.
Families can talk about...
Practice addition and subtraction with physical objects.
Play balancing games wherein one group of objects equals the other.
Talk about probability and what it means.