A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this interactive reader not only lets kids hear stories and music, but also allows them to interact with the book. It could help parents learn new ways to their kids. It comes with three stories, but parents will have to buy additional book sets (some of which include popular characters, such as Pooh). Families might want to consider this type of reader if they have older siblings that want to interact with toddlers.
What's it about?
With MY FIRST STORY READER, parents or caregivers of children under age 3 can participate in a multimedia story-reading session. The reader is a clamshell-shaped unit that measures roughly 9 by 9 inches. When opened, the plastic unit has an indentation in which to securely place plastic-covered cardboard books. The unit comes with three interchangeable Baby Einstein books: Discover Colors, Discover Music and Discover the Sky.
When a parent places a book inside the reader, it automatically reads aloud any pages that are open; the Baby Einstein books are accompanied by classical music and end with a sing-along song. Kids can add sound effects by pushing one of three large, geometrically shaped, colored buttons beneath the book. The unit offers a second mode of play: By pushing a switch, kids can hear questions about things on the opened pages of the book. Children respond by hitting the requested button; the unit adjusts for kids who don't know their colors or shapes yet.
Is it any good?
My First Story Reader can help first-time parents learn how to read to their children. It also allows older siblings to help entertain and interact with younger brothers and sisters. This is a less expensive alternative to Fisher Price's PowerTouch Baby or Leapfrog's LittleTouch LeapPad, two interactive reading systems that respond to touches on the page.
Since babies and toddlers constantly touch objects on the page, some families have disliked the vocal repetition that these touch-sensitive systems produce. With My First Story Reader, toddlers can touch the pages as much as they want, and the interactivity only occurs when they hit the three big buttons located below the book. This is an excellent addition to any toddler's library.
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