Win a Winner!
Writers & Photographers
Berlitz Summer Camp
by Allen Rausch
$99, ages 4 and up
If you’re like me, you’ve had fight your kids for control of the iPad since you brought it home. That’s why I love the latest version of LeapFrog’s LeapPad. Built as a kid-friendly tablet PC with a five-inch screen, it inspired love in my kids the instant the unit came out of the box. The basic package comes with four apps, including an art program and one that allows kids to take photos and create short videos.
By hooking the unit to a PC, parents can activate the impressive suite of online tools that allow them to monitor their kids’ activities and progress in mastering what’s taught by the apps. They can also download new programs from the LeapFrog website.
That leads to the weakest aspect of the whole package – the price. Cost for the dozens of excellent apps available, from enhanced e-books to educational games, ranges from $10 to $25 each. On the other hand, you do get what you pay for, so if the cost is manageable for your family, this is one of the best electronic learning systems available today. For me, it was worth the cost just to get my iPad back.
Allen also recommends …
• Jack and the Beanstalk, from Mindshapes for iPad, $2.99, ages 5-8
• Tikatok, from Tikatok (www.tikatok.com)for PC, free, ages 5-12
• The Magic Schoolbus: Oceans, by Scholastic Media for iPad, $7.99, ages 4 and up
The Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time|
If you or your kids have never played this masterpiece, Nintendo has you covered with this brilliant updating for the 3DS.
PushMo, an absolutely brilliant title only available through the eShop is easily one of the best shape-based puzzle games since the original Tetris.
Just Dance 3|
The Just Dance series turns dancing into a game, a game into a workout, and a workout into so much fun you won’t realize how much you’re sweating.
OpenFeint Game Channel|
Game Channel (available in the iPad App Store or the Android Market) is a free app that offers you a free game to download every day.
Game On! Nintendo 3DS|
The latest addition to the DS family, the Nintendo 3DS, is an extraordinary handheld gaming machine that produces 3D images you don’t need special glasses to see. It’s an amazing concept, even more amazing when you see it in action.
Game On! Babysitting Mama|
Some of the best video games out there don’t take place is a future world or a fantasy kingdom. They just let you experience something from real life with all of the boring parts pulled out.
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess|
When looking for gaming options during tough economic times, it’s good to remember that many publishers will re-release excellent games a few years after their initial release as part of a line of value-priced classic games.
Pokémon Black & Pokémon White|
Pokémon Black and White essentially reinvents and reboots the series.