Most helpful critical review
78 of 86 people found the following review helpful
Very POOR writing model!
on May 7, 2012
First, I taught PreK through 3rd grade for 10 years prior to being a mom... with that said: DO NOT BUY THIS TOY if you want your child to learn good writing habits! Seriously, please read this before you consider buying it!
I mistakenly bought this for my own 2-3year old son without thoroughly checking out its full features. Although he really does like it, it's going back! The positibve benefits do not outweigh the negatives in terms of educational/instructional value.
-encourages tracing with a pen stylus or finger touch on the screen
-includes a three sided, triangular pen, which is helpful to help start a correct early pen/pencil grasp
-easy to see screen, step by step instructions to form shapes, lower case and upper case letters (NOTE: SEE CONS BELOW regarding odd letter formation directions and modeling!)
-does engage my son (he keeps it in the bathroom as a special potty toy while he's busy "working", never gets old, will cry when it's gone)
-so far durable over several months of use and some accidental drops on hard tile floor and grabbing it by the stylus string
-has a free draw feature & a "make the picture dance/wiggle/jump" feature that moves your creation up and down a bit after drawing
--continuously positive praise for all attempts of writing/scribbling/drawing
-encourages shape and letter identification, plus beginning words that start with the corresponding letter
-terrible letter formation modeling (make two lines down, then connect them in the middle to make a capital M!? NO way! Just one example. Several more!)
-child will have to unlearn bad habits and relearn properly when faced with school instruction, no matter what printing method is taught--every teacher from every district I've talked about this with agrees!
-loud volume, even when adjusted to lowest setting
-includes shapes, upper & lower case letters, no numbers (do they need to keep it separate to make more $ and force you to buy a different game toy?!)
-no tracking or way to self check w/ only positive praise (my son can color the entire screen dark and it says "great job!")
-absolutely no correlation connecting the lower case letters with the upper case letters, even though they are the same button, the two functions are entirely different and do not come together to help build this matchup for young learners.
Not recommended. Still looking for a better substitute! Do let me know if you happen to know of one, please. Thanks!!