Interactive Book / Early Reading Software -- The Big Picture
In general, these programs are good introductions to reading for young children, especially for those not
always interested in sitting down to hear a book read in a parent's lap. Although they will not teach your child
to read, they do provide additional exposure to reading, reading comprehension, and vocabulary.
SuperKids' reviewers compared several programs this month, evaluating their content and design, as well as their kid appeal and ease of use. Which is best for your child? Click on the titles to see SuperKids' complete reviews.
Alice in Wonderland [for ages 7 to 13] from Joriko Interactive. A faithful interpretation of a classic story. Unfortunately, Alice is easier to understand and enjoy in its original text form.
Eddie & Minx Waking Up the Magic [for ages 5 and up] from Birchtree Multimedia, is a rudimentary, but interesting effort at creating an interactive storybook. Although it lacks the pizzazz of more sophisticated programs, it tells a compelling tale that children will enjoy.
Little Explorer: Reading Fun My First Interactive Storybook [for ages 2 to 6] from Publications International, is truly written for the early reader. Text is minimal and words are simple. Words light up as they are read, clicking on a word repeats the word, and clicking on a red word accesses a pop-up definition of the word, written in kid-friendly language. A definite winner.
Arthur's Computer Adventure [for ages 3 to 7] from Broderbund, provides a familiar story to young users, but increased game activities diminish educational value.
The Cat in the Hat [for ages 3 to 7] from Broderbund, is a delightful animated version of the classic Dr. Seuss story.
Mulan Animated StoryBook [for ages 5 to 9] from Disney, provides an entertaining follow-on to the Disney movie. Best for young girls who liked the movie.
Winnie the Pooh and Tigger Too [for ages 3 to 6] from Disney, is a simple program -- just right for early computer users. A great story plus clever animations and basic but addicting games produce a program with great kid appeal.