I tend not to buy electronic toys – not because I think they are evil but because the simple toys are generally more appealing to me. Probably because they remind me of my own favorite toys. Even so, there are more than a few battery-operated toys around the house – some of which are gems & others I recommend you leave on the shelf.
Hoping to help you avoid spending money on the wrong toys, here are the good, the bad & the ugly from our electronic toy collection.
My daughter first learned to stand using the bars on this baby gym, but she has loved the music, lights, rattles and toys since we used the mat for tummy time as a newborn. This is a surprisingly useful toy even now that she is a toddler, as we can remove the bars & the colorful (and washable) mat is great for both indoor & outdoor use (picnics, forts, under kid-sized tables & tents, etc).
It’s nice to have a toy that both entertains & teaches. This cute tea set has a variety of songs – some of which teach kids manners using cute & very catchy tunes. Little kids seem to universally love having make-believe tea parties & this singing teapot gets a lot of attention in our house.
Last year I picked up the LeapPad2 because I believed the hype. My own experience has been:
- It eats batteries & even rechargeable batteries drain very quickly.
- The applications are expensive with no guarantee kids will enjoy them. They can be misleading as well – some applications have zero interactivity & play only music. What a waste!
- Only 1 kid can use at a time.
It’s nice for restaurants or travel – but so are crayons and paper (at a fraction of the cost!). Save your $100+ ($100 is just for the device itself – applications are extra at around $15-$20 each!), and instead buy a few iphone or ipad applications. If you don’t have an iphone or ipad, definitely upgrade yourself before investing in a LeapPad2 for your kid!
At the time I thought this would be a winner. My daughter does enjoy the variety of music, but I think the music is too loud & there is no volume control. Also, we have not been able to get the bubbles to work, so that seems like a waste to me.but I think money would be better spent on more simple toys for the bath – it really isn’t worth it when you compare it to the plastic stacking cups my daughter prefers to play with at bath time!