A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this fan site will appeal to kids who collect Zhu Zhu Pets. Kids must be able to read to play many of the games, and there's not a lot to do here other than play the games and look at all the different Zhu Zhu products you can purchase (but not on the site). The main emphasis is on promoting the hamster characters and showing kids all the ways they can have fun with them.
- Parents say
- Kids say
Is it any good?
For kids caught in the Zhu Zhu
Pets craze, the site is fine for an occasional visit but it doesn't offer much
in the way of education or interaction. It offers a few amusing, age-appropriate games, information about the ZhuZhus, and a few ideas to spark offline fun like coloring pages and cutouts. There's some YouTube videos here of real kids playing with Zhu Zhus while an offscreen adult prompts them to say what they like about the toy. This odd way to add video advertising to the site seems like an unfortunate attempt to put unmarked ads on the site without kids recognizing them as such. Of course, all of this fun is under the goal of selling more Zhu Zhus, even if you cannot buy directly from this website.
Online interaction: There are no opportunities to interact with others on this site.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the appeal of mechanical pets. Are Zhu Zhu pets really as much fun as a real pet? Do real pets always act the way you want them to on command like robot toys? Which type of pet is more rewarding to care for? What about virtual pets? How do they stack up against real and robotic animal companions?
Families can talk about sites that are designed to sell.
How do toy companies use Web sites to get you interested in their
products? What can you do to make sure you aren't pulled into the
marketing hype while surfing the Web?