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September 22, 2009

Leapfrog's Tag Junior

We are big fans of Leapfrog's Tag Reading System in our house so when we were asked to test out the new Tag Junior. we were very excited. Products that are geared towards literacy always score points in my book. The Tag Reading System has become a favorite toy in our house. There is nothing else that can make my daughter stay still for so long than a pile of books and her Tag Reader.

The Tag Junior ($34.99) is geared towards the 2-4 year old set and is even easier to use than the Tag with a pen. The chunky hand device is simple in concept and for tiny hands to operate. All a kid has to do is stamp the device onto a page and it works its magic. A section of text is read aloud along with songs and sound effects that are hidden in the pictures. The board books ($10.99 each) are another asset to this device as they are smaller, more durable and easier to hold on to or stand up versus the Tag's paper books.
Included with the Tag Junior (also comes in purple) is the beginner book, "If I Were..." which has 16 activities and over 70 audio responses. When I handed over the Junior to my three year-old she immediately grabbed the concept and got down to reading. The theme with the Junior is colors, letters, social play and numbers. Characters such as Dora, Curious George, Dr. Seuss and Winnie-the-Pooh feature prominently in the Tag Junior collection.
Like the original Tag the Leapfrog Learning Path, a free online resource, allows parents to see just what skills their children are learning. The books are easily downloadable as well. The price is affordable and the Leapfrog website is wonderful for kids and parents as well.
What I noticed is that while the Tag Junior is great for kids in the preschool set and I love the board books after having already become users of the original Tag my daughter just did not want to use the Tag Junior as much. She liked the books but prefers the pen. However, if you get the Tag Junior first it will be a welcome addition, helpful literacy resource and teaching device for you and your child.

MPR Rating: Four Stars.