Sesame Street: Elmo's A-to-Zoo Adventure
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Sesame Street: Elmo's A-to-Zoo Adventure offers numerous educational mini-games that help reinforce reading and letter concepts for preschoolers. The controls are simplified for very young children, but tilting the Wii remote might be a little more challenging for toddlers than simply tapping on a touchscreen, as they would in the DS version. On the whole, the controls work fine for all versions. However, some games make kids wait, which can get annoying. It's also worth noting that parents can set a play-timer, which will alert kids that they have "one more game" before turning off at the designated time.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- letter or word recognition
Thinking & Reasoning
- applying information
Engagement, Approach, Support
What's it about?
In Sesame Street: Elmo's A-to-Zoo Adventure, Elmo and Zoe visit the zoo. Their guide, a muppet named Chris, leads them through the various zoo habitats, introducing them to different animals along the way. As they visit each new area, they'll play a letter-and-reading-themed game with the animals. Some activities include tossing letter-labeled coconuts to monkeys, popping bubbles with letters in them, and scooping up letters while on an elephant ride.
Is it any good?
Sesame Street: Elmo's A-to-Zoo Adventure has been designed for use by preschoolers. It's bright and colorful; it has super simple controls (and the game comes with bonus items -- a chunky DS stylus or a character-themed Wii remote cover -- to make playing with tiny hands even easier); and it is fully voiced-over, meaning no reading is necessary for the instructions. And the educational value is undeniably solid. These cute games reinforce the same early-learning lessons that Sesame Street does on TV.
The addition of the play-timer, which allows parents to set the game to turn off after a certain point is very nice -- but it's even nicer that the timer gives the kids fair warning before shutting down, telling them that they upcoming game will be their last for today. A few of the games make kids wait too long before introducing the correct answer, and the characters can be overly chatty, but the game auto-adjusts its educational content and it has a great hint system to assure success.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the fun of learning letters. How can learning these letter sounds help us when we're not playing the game? Why is reading important?
This game helps families set playing time limits. Why is it important to limit screen time for young children?