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SuperKids Software Review - The Parent's and Teacher's Guide to Childrens' Software
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My First CD-ROM, Toddler

DK Interactive Learning

Ages 18 months to 3 years

Rating Scale
5 = great,    1 = poor
Educational Value
Kid Appeal
Ease of Use

System Requirements

PC / Mac Price Survey

Product Support

This program is organized much like its counterpart, My First CD-ROM, Preschool, from DK Interactive Learning. Toddlers can choose from among six simple activities that introduce basic critical thinking skills to young learners. Kids are joined by a friendly jack-in-the-box host, Jack, who presents the activities and encourages kids to participate. Computer skills are presented as users perform basic mouse manipulation and clicking. There is no end goal in this program, so toddlers' participation in any given activity can include any number of trials.

Educational Value
My First CD-ROM, Toddler acquaints users with very early learning skills while entertaining them with the sort of activities that kids in this age range adore. Some of the drills do little more than provide likable graphics accompanied by rhyme or song, while others include a simple drill to strengthen developing critical thinking and computer skills. Although kids in this age range will undoubtedly be experiencing this program with an older partner, clear explanations and simple instruction are offered for each activity. Toddlers identify animal sounds, match pairs, sing-a-long with a dancing dog, match shapes and learn new vocabulary. Simple pointing and clicking is also drilled and rewarded.

An included parents section provides insight into the learning experiences taking place in each activity, and encourages parents to enjoy the program with their children. Additional, away-from-the-computer worksheets are also available in this section.

Kid Appeal
Unlike many currently popular titles that feature fast-paced animation and detailed graphics, this title is slow and methodical in its presentation. Graphics and animation are attractive, but simple, as are the included characters. Although this program is almost identical to My First CD-ROM, Preschool, it works better for two reasons: the activities are more attractive, and the targeted age group is more responsive to its simple, uncluttered tone. In addition, its open-ended approach lets youngsters do as little or as much of the program as they like, without feeling indebted to any particular activity.

Ease of Use / Install
My First CD-ROM, Toddler installs without difficulty. The program is extremely easy to use and offers excellent explanations and demonstrations for each activity. Although our young testers sometimes lacked the coordination needed to manipulate the mouse appropriately, parent reviewers did not see this as a problem, and agreed that the program provides a good opportunity to improve these skills.

Best for... / Bottom-Line
This Toddler program offers basic early-learning drills in an easy-to-use format. Although it might prove to be too slow for some toddlers, it makes a mellow, unthreatening first exposure to the computer.

See SuperKids' comparisons with other Toddler software titles, and the Buyers Guide for current market prices of the PC and Mac versions.

System Requirements
PC: Windows 95/98, Pentium 75 MHz or faster cpu, 10 MB hard drive space, 12 MB RAM for Windows 95, 16 MB RAM for Windows 98, 640x480 pixels, 256 color display, Quad-speed (4X) or faster CD-ROM, 8-bit sound card.

Mac: System 7.5.3 or higher, Power PC 100 MHz or faster cpu, 10 MB hard drive space, 16 MB RAM, 640x480 pixels, 256 color display, Quad-speed (4X) or faster CD-ROM, 8 bit audio.

Reviewed on:

  • PowerMac 6400/200 with 32MB and 8XCD
  • Pentium266 with 64MB and 12XCD
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