A love for reading starts at home. But learning to read can be harder for some kids. Even before kindergarten kids should be learning their letters and how words go together and the LeapFrog has a great toy to make it fun! The LeapFrog Word Whammer is a handheld gaming device for children four and up that helps them learn better letter recognition and even how the letters sound.
We were sent a Word Whammer in our first package for being part of the LeapFrog Mom Squad. I’ll be sharing the other products this weekend, and we just got our second package today! Get ready for a lot of fun educational toy options over the next few weeks (and beyond). Now, Goonie is above the targeted age for the Word Whammer, but that doesn’t mean it’s not fun for him to play with. It has a soft handle on one side that has an easy grip and place for their thumb to hold and a twisting handle on the right side that can twist around, or be pushed in depending on the command of the game. The right side reminds me the old Bop-It toys we had as kids, and it was a similar motion to play with it.
The Word Whammer isn’t extremely heavy, and comes loaded with 3 different games and 5 different levels of learning. As your child goes through the games, they can advance to harder levels and help improve their letter and word knowledge. When you first turn on the Word Whammer, it lights up and tells you about the three games and the main characters, Penguin, Bear and Dragon, and they’re at a circle and need help doing different things. The Word Whammer will instruct your child on what to do and how to play the game. We all loved the Penguin tea-cup game, which is similar to one of our favorite rides at amusement parks.
All of the games are to help build letter recognition, or teach your child how say a letter, or how different letters work together to make a word. They can push the handle in to make matches and twist it around to make different selections. The games take a little hand eye coordination that may be too hard for children under 3, but it wont take a lot for older kids to learn how to move the handle to make their selections. Because the motions aren’t too complicated and the games tell you what to do, the Word Whammer would also be great for older users who are delayed or have different developmental needs.
The Word Whammer is the perfect size to keep in the car to help keep kids entertained and keeps them away from watching videos or playing video games all the time. It also has the added bonus of helping them get a leap start on reading which they’ll need for Kindergarten and beyond. Even the switch on top is made for small fingers to use and navigate. But that switch on top was definitely designed with parents in mind, with two different sound levels and an off switch to help save battery life.