A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster is designed as an interactive adventure, in which players directly engage with many Muppet characters from the show. It is a very physical game that will require kids to be on their feet and moving around quite a bit. And it is designed especially with two-player cooperative play in mind. Rather than focus on "book learning" (i.e., ABC's and 123's), the game's stories promote positive life lessons, such as friendship, responsibility, and generosity.
What's it about?
In SESAME STREET: ONCE UPON A MONSTER, Elmo and Cookie Monster journey into their favorite storybook and interact with the monster characters they meet there (including some of their more familiar Sesame Street friends, like Grover and Oscar the Grouch). Each story features five or so mini-games that allow kids to truly take part. They may dress characters in costume, toss garbage in a trash can, flap their arms to fly to the top of a tree, or follow along with a dance (to name a few activities).
Is it any good?
Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster is definitely among the best preschool video games out there. Its polished presentation, wonderfully witty script, and easy-to-learn-but-not-too-easy-to-play mini-games make it a package that little kids will adore. Moreover, the entire experience is designed to work equally well for one or two players, making Once Upon a Monster the perfect game for parents to play with their kids (or for siblings to play together). Rarely do we see a game that is so utterly appropriate for preschool audiences that is also simultaneously appealing to older kids and adults as well. It's an absolute winner.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the lessons learned from the game. Ask kids what the moral of each story is. When Cookie and Elmo help throw a party for a lonely monster, what did they learn? When they assist another monster in restoring her ruined garden, what knowledge did they gain from that? And so on.
This is a very physical game. Do you like games that make you move? In what ways do you prefer them over games that you just sit and play?
- Platforms: Xbox 360
- Subjects: Arts: choreography, movement, rhythm
Math: counting, patterns, shapes
- Skills: Responsibility & Ethics: embracing differences, honoring the community, respect for others
Health & Fitness: body awareness, gross motor skills, movement
Emotional Development: empathy, identifying emotions, labeling feelings
- Price: $49.99
- Available online? Not available online
- Developer: Warner Bros. Games
- Release date: October 11, 2011
- Genre: Educational
- ESRB rating: E
For kids who love preschool games
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.