There are some great programs out there for toddlers and young kids. Placing a child in front of an engaging piece of early learning software is a wonderful way kids to be entertained without you having to be there all the time; it gives you the chance to have a little bit of quality self time-to do the washing, cooking and cleaning done! Knowing that your child is learning at the same time is a bonus!
So how to choose the best piece of software for your toddler or young child? A couple of factors need to be taken into account, namely their interests and their aptitude level, or at this stage, their dexterity with a mouse or keyboard.
We can address the latter point first by simply saying that almost all early learning software programs are designed to actually teach your child about the computer. That is not to say they will learn about how to script C++ but that they will learn that when they move the mouse or press a key on the keyboard that something happens on the screen and the computer will respond, either visually or aurally.
This skill alone is all that is required at a toddler level and can keep young computer fans engaged for some time, though it is recommended to keep computer sessions short at this stage. Once elementary skills have been developed, simple alphabet and numerical learning is engaged and this is where interests come in.
Programs from companies like Jumpstart and The Learning Company focus on general learning levels, such as the Reader Rabbit or Jumpstart Toddler and Kindergarten programs. These educational PC games are highly recommended as they have been developed by companies who have been in the business for a long time and invest time and money making sure the programs are fun, educational and frustration-free.
There are also educational PC games based on popular franchises that kids love. Titles in this area would include Dora The Explorer, Thomas The Tank Engine, Finding Nemo, Winnie The Pooh and Bob The Builder. Most franchise-based software produced for this level is reliable, because they have their brand’s reputation on the line, but take a look at reviews if you are unsure.