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Disney Learning takes you back to the Hundred Acre Wood, home of WInnie the Pooh and your favorite childhood friends. Pooh, Tigger, Eeyore, Piglet and Roo provide you and your older infant and toddler a shared learning experience using the software Winnie the Pooh Baby.
In typical Pooh fashion, you're welcomed by Pooh saying, "We do hope you can stay and play this fine day." Pooh as well as all the characters have voices and dialogue which are authentic and rhythmic. Animation is crisp and clear without the extra unneeded, distracting sounds and movement often found in some children's software.
After an initial warm and gentle welcome by Pooh and friends, you're taken to the Hundred Acre Wood which is surrounded by a pastel quilted baby blanket border with sewn on patches which function as the buttons along the the left side. these buttons allow you to jump to any of the other activity areas. Along the right side of the quilt border, are 2 simple buttons which serve as the "Do it Again" option and the "Good Job" button. "Do it again" allows the parent to repeat the last thing that just happened. The "Good Job" button allows the parent to control positive reinforcement . The keyboard is designated solely for the child and any key strike or even the expected whole hand pound of the toddler will keep the game in play. A few times during our testing, a 12 month reviewer struck the right keys all at once to cause a window change during the game. Parents can easily navigate between activities and options using the mouse. Unfortunately, there are no skip buttons for jumping over the intro after several play sessions nor can you skip over the credits and return to play once you've selected quit.
From the activity buttons, you can select any of the five different activities hosted by Pooh, Piglet, Tigger, Roo or Eeyore. In Pooh's Hunny Quest , a key strike causes our favorite bear to reach into any one of the honey pots to reveal a surprise or even better -- his most treasured honey. Piglet plays a game of Play Along where children can mimic the things Piglet does which includes identifying body parts. Tigger tears in with a fun game of Peek a Boo and also introduces the concept of opposites. Roo's Breakfast Symphony features the little mouse banging on pots and pans to four different tunes. Eeyore calmly paints pictures outdoors with an unlimited paper supply.
This extremely simple and straightforward software featuring high interest, lovable characters is sure to be a hit with parents interested in introducing computer software to their older infants and toddlers. Winnie the Pooh Baby is parent driven and monitored as one might expect. It can provide a fun opportunity for parents and kids to interact. The activities are limited and would get repetitive, but this is not a negative aspect for the target audience. Infants and toddlers enjoy repetition and it is developmentally appropriate at this age.
Learning topics include: music, animals, shapes, colors, letters, numbers and seasons. Additional benefits could include: encouraging interaction between child and parent or caregiver, nurturing the concept of cause and effect, promoting language development, foster long distance family communication and plain no nonsense enjoyment.
Parents can also refer to "Parent Stuff" which includes instructions for each activity as well as a review of topics and concepts covered and very brief information on child development for 9-24 month olds. The Disney Learning site is an option here as well, but the link didn't automatically support the browser so a direct link might not always work.
Winnie the Pooh Baby hits a bulls eye with it's target age of 9-24 month old children! Disney's Pooh is as recognizable as Cheerios with older infants and toddlers. The animation is well done and sound and movement stimulating and pleasing. The five friends from the Hundred Acre Wood provide five different activities with varied emphasis including art and music. Young toddlers and older infants could play this again and again with much enjoyment.
Very easy and the introduction from Pooh and his pals is friendly and inviting. The free Pooh Coloring Book software which was included in the box would not install and therefore couldn't be reviewed. We can only imagine that it could be a cute addition especially if your child enjoys art and found Eyeore's activity especially fun. A "back" button when you've quit perhaps by mistake and a "next"button at the beginning of the game to skip the intro would have been great. The link to the Disney Learning site should work with any browser; it is unclear why it didn't.
Parents and caregivers of older infants and toddlers who are interested in including some software stimulation into their child's day of learning. Some kids in particular who seem to be especially drawn to videos and dvds would most likely love this program which includes the element of interaction with the keyboard which is missing from the TV screen.
PC: Windows 95 or later, Pentium class processor 166 MHz or faster, 32 MB RAM or greater, 80 MB free disk space, 8x speed CD-ROM drive, 16-bit color DirectX-compatible sound card, 16-bit color DirectX-compatible video card.return to top of page
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