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This program introduces Maisy, the fanciful young mouse of book and television fame, who invites preschoolers to explore her humble little home. Three rooms, a bedroom, kitchen and bathroom, offer kids multiple opportunities for point and click surprises. Subsequent visits to the same room result in a different set of animated surprises. Seven available learning activities can be accessed from any of three rooms. Each activity involves children in a simple game or chore in concert with Maisy and her friends.
Preschoolers can choose to piece together broken cookies, play hide and seek, tidy the house, dress Maisy in weather appropriate garb, critique Maisy’s artwork, selectively load animals on a train, and paint according to precisely given directions. The program’s pace is slow and methodical, with simple graphics that resemble those of a young child.
Maisy’s Playhouse does a commendable job of differentiating between mouse skills required at the various difficulty levels. Kids playing at Level 1, for example, achieve success by simply pointing and clicking on the appropriate graphic. As they progress, the more advanced techniques of clicking and dragging come into use. “My 3 year-old has a hard time coordinating her use of the mouse,” noted one mother, “Level 1 activities provided her with plenty of practice, but weren’t too frustrating.”
PC: Windows 95/98, Pentium 90 or faster cpu, 20 MB hard drive space, 16 MB RAM, 640x480 VGA display, Quad-speed or faster CD-ROM, 8-bit sound card.return to top of page
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