VTech InnoTab Software - Doc McStuffins
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that VTech InnoTab Software - Doc McStuffins is an upbeat title with positive messages and a lot of games. It's based on a popular television show character. The game blends in a lot of important preschool skills rather than focusing only on math, reading, or science. It mirrors the values of the television show.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- following directions
- letter or word recognition
Thinking & Reasoning
- making new creations
- producing new content
- personal growth
- labeling feelings
Health & Fitness
- preventing sickness
Engagement, Approach, Support
With eight mini-games and some extra-creative activities, most kids will find engaging things to explore. The card games, in particular, are fun to replay.
The game teaches kids about feelings and healing, so kids should be able to relate information to their daily lives. The math and letter recognition both feel forced into their mini-games. The health and healing are more organic.
Skill levels seem to revert upon each visit to the game, but parents can see what skills their kids are focusing on in the VTech Learning Lodge.
What's it about?
VTECH INNOTAB SOFTWARE - DOC MCSTUFFINS is a collection of games and activities centering on the character of Doc, a preschool girl with a vivid imagination. Doc's toys come to life, joining her in games such as hide-and-seek and memory. They also come to her with injuries that need to be diagnosed and healed. This title includes an ebook, a photo activity, a virtual coloring book, and seven mini-games.
The ebook tells the story of what happened when Doc McStuffin's stuffed animal Lambie got a tear that was too much for even Doc to handle. Kids then enter into Doc's world, where they choose one of six locations, including the backyard, the playroom, and Doc's bedroom. Once there, kids are randomly given a mini-game to play. There are three card games: memory, find the different card, and follow that card (such as the three-cups-and-a-ball game). There's an activity that involves popping bubbles that match the missing letters in a word and one that requires flicking marbles to solve math problems. Scoring well in a mini-game unlocks it for free-play mode and rewards kids with stickers and other items or the coloring-book activity. Creative kids may enjoy the coloring book or head into the photo lab, where they can take pictures with Doc McStuffins characters and props.
Is it any good?
VTech InnoTab Software - Doc McStuffins presents a fairly cohesive set of mini-games while having a nice mix to appeal to different kids. Diagnosing and healing toys is both fun and empowering.
However, there are some things about the set-up of the title that could be frustrating. Because activities are randomly assigned to locations, they can be hard to find and thus unlock. Also, coloring-book pages and their tools and accessories need to be unlocked by completing games with a strong score. A few of the games struggle with control issues; the marble-sorting game, for example, requires not only solving the math problem but flicking the marble in the correct direction at the right time. It's also hard to use a stethoscope on some of the toys. There is a lot of potential here, but a few flaws just seem like sloppy design.
Families can talk about...
Ask about the health tip cards. Practice some as a family.
Hold your own toy hospital with your child. Bring the glue and needle and thread!
Is this game different from the TV show upon which it's based?