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Leap Frog TAG Reader Review

Fun, Educational Toy That Helps Kids Learn to Read

About.com Rating 4.5 Star Rating

By

Leap Frog Tag Reader
©Leap Frog

The LeapFrog TAG Reading System, a toy for kids 4-8, is a great educational toy that teaches young preschool and elementary school aged kids foundational skills for reading. Children use the device to explore words and pictures in special storybooks, many of which feature favorite childhood characters like the Disney Princesses and Dr. Seuss.

Features

- TAG Reader

- Storybook

- USB Cable

- LEAPFROG Connect CD

- 2 “AAA” Batteries

- Volume control

- Headphone Jack (headphones not included)

- up to 10 TAG Storybooks can be downloaded to the device

- Automatic shut-off after 5 minutes of inactivity

- Audio Book Button - the device can speak the audio of downloaded books, even if the book is not available

- Device will let you know when batteries need to be changed

- Over 40 different book options available for purchase separately

- Can also be utilized with LEAP Frog World Map and Solar System Maps (sold separately)

Set Up Instructions

Leapfrog's Tag Reading System©LeapFrog

Using a small coin, twist open the screw to the battery compartment, which is easily opened by an adult to install the 2 “AAA” Batteries. The TAG Reader, right out of the box, is compatible with the book that is included in the packaging. Otherwise, connect the TAG Reader via USB device to your computer (PC or MAC). Download the software from the internet or via the LEAPFROG Connect CD which allows multiple books to be downloaded to the TAG Reader device. Parents can also utilize the Leap Frog Learning Path to track their child’s progress and amount of time utilized.

While using the TAG Reader with the book, there are different features included on each page, which allow children at various developmental levels to advance their skills.

Place the TAG Reader on the purple book icon and it will automatically read the words on the page, and a special chime will indicate when to turn the page. Place the TAG Reader on individual words and it will read and pronounce that particular word. The reader can be placed on various pictures within the story to experience various sound effects. The green game icon asks various questions to assist with the development of a child’s reading comprehension and discrimination. Over 40 different books are available, featuring children’s favorite storybooks such as Dr. Seuss, The Cat in the Hat, and both Disney Princesses and Cars movie characters. Learn to Write and Draw with Mr. Pencil teaches children about how to form the upper and lowercase letters of the alphabet. Solar system maps and world maps are also available as expansion packs to support additional learning experiences.

My Review

The TAG Reader is a great educational toy that that exposes young children to reading opportunities in a fun way, encouraging children to build confidence with their skills. It is very easy to set up, right out of the box. Once the device is connected to the computer and the internet, downloading additional books is very easy for people with basic computer experience. Inside the cover of the book, instructions are provided for parents to make sure their child has an appropriate sitting posture along with the proper hold of the device using their fingertips. Young children that I have worked with using this device, have mostly enjoyed exploring the pictures and sound effects with the reader. The pages are paper and can be ripped, but are fairly durable with frequent use. Overtime though, in some of the drawing books, the reader can lightly indent the paper for kids who push down hard on the device when tracing.

As a parent I often feel like I am asking my son the same types of educational questions like, “What’s this?”, “What color is that?” or “How many can we count?” When using this device with children, I really enjoy the various games. As a parent it’s a great learning opportunity to use this toy along with your child to learn different types of appropriate questions that you can ask your children with other books or out in the community, that are good for their developmental level. Until your child is proficient with the device, I would suggest using it along with them. I have used the reader for a substantial amount of time without having to replace the batteries. This is a very easy device to store in a backpack and when using it with headphones makes it great for travel.

Here's a link to other LeapFrog educational toys.

Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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