My daughter isn't really aware of gaming. She sees her dad playing them on his phone, but other than that she correlates gaming via the board games that we recently started to play. I have a conflict with technology since I do agree that is is amazing (and spend a significant amount online for work), but also worry about introducing it to them at such a young age. However, I do remember the thrill of gaming growing up - trying to beat and conquer Super Mario or playing endless rounds of tennis, Zelda and Tetris from my GameBoy, so the game and system has to be a good fit for our family. I think it does have a place, but as a mom it is also about finding the balance and discovering what games can deliver educational value and not just passive viewing.
I recently meet my daughter, and game-loving husband in the middle for an afternoon of gaming via our Wiito celebrate the launch of Sesame Street: Elmo'??s Musical Monsterpiece, an action-filled console and handheld video game encouraging preschoolers to sing, dance, and learn through a series of fun musical games. Elmo is a big hit with my 14-month-old and a staple in our home when my older daughter was a toddler, so it was easy to get excited him and showcasing a small party for him in our home.
We decked our house out with Elmo posters, served treats and let the kids experiences this new game. Prior to the party I went through it with my daughter and at 4.5 years old as well as someone who never played a game like this instantly got the concept of the Wii remote as well as the instructions from the game. Elmo and his friends from Sesame Street guided her through each game with simple instructions that she easily grasped.
As someone who also loves music she was thrilled with the first game where she had to jump and catch musical notes that would later recite a song. When her friends arrived she loved the game with the honkers where they had to determine whether a noise was loud or soft and move their game console to either Abby or Elmo to illustrate that they understood the sounds. With no use of complex buttons on the Wii, the kids all loved this game and had a blast moving their Wii to each character where essentially they were all doing some amazing listening!
Count von Count also makes an apperance in the game who plays along with Elmo as they make music on a piano and play a game - along with Abby. While the kids played the games, I loved how excited they were about each part - listening to the instructions and taking in the setting. For someone who isn't that into gaming, it allowed me to see how it can be incorporated into their play and learning, and not become something they passively watch. Samantha Ryan, Senior Vice President, Production and Development, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment also remarked on this and started, "In Sesame Street:Elmo'??s Musical Monsterpiece, parents can inspire an understanding of music and dance in a kid-friendly environment with their favorite Sesame Street characters,'? She added, '??We worked closely with the early childhood development experts at Sesame Workshop to create fun interactive activities that help kids foster a love for music.'?
Another unique feature of the game is how the focus on musical appreciation and various different styles of music (hip-hop, salsa, dancehall, cumbia, samba, funk, merengue, Jamaican ragga, and Indian raga influences) while also exploring topics like listening, math skills and memory skills - all of which is determined based on your child's level.
An afternoon of interactive gaming and music appreciation, I learned more about how technology, and this game in particular, can foster a love of learning, music and play that can both be an intregal part of her development as well as one that just happens to be a lot of fun.
Sesame Street: Elmo'??s Musical Monsterpiece is available for Wii'?¢ and Nintendo DS'?¢ .
For more information on Sesame Street: Elmo'??s Musical Monsterpiece, please visit www.SesameStreetVideogames.com.
Momtrends was not paid for this post.
We were given a Wii and game for the purposes of this review.