Tablets are at the top of so many kids’ wish lists this Christmas, even for the littlest ones in our homes. For the preschool set who is just starting to learn about technology, the intuitive design of touch-directed devices are amazing. They’re able to experience so much through the tablet that they couldn’t through a regular computer.
For the littlest kids in my house, I’d consider School Zone’s Little Scholar tablet. Ideal for kids ages 3-6, this tablet comes preloaded with $350 worth of original apps, videos, and music. What you see is what you get with this tablet–you can’t add more apps to it, which could be a big negative or a huge positive, depending on your perspective.
For this age, I am actually fine with that.
This tablet is designed specifically for kids in preschool through first grade and is completely focused on education, although they want the kids to have fun with learning, of course. They have created their own educational video series starring Charlie the Golden Retriever and featuring music by Brian Vander Ark of The Verve Pipe (remember The Freshmen? Yeah, that was him). And the tablet has a three-level series of ebooks that will help kids learn to read. These are simply digital versions of their favorite early readers with audio voiceover, and some books have highlighted text as they read.
There are some more playful apps on here too. It has a front- and rear-facing camera with lots of filters, and the music section has 87 original songs that they can learn and sing along with, which my music-loving daughter will really enjoy. There are also a few puzzle-type games that are meant to be educational but are pretty fun for them at the same time.
Parents will like the A+ Report Card app which will show how much time kids have spent on the different apps, so you can tell what they’re enjoying learning about and help reinforce those areas of interest for them, or maybe work a little more on the areas that are weaker.
The main thing that sets this tablet apart from options like the Nabi Jr. and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3, both of which we highly recommend, is that Little Scholar is all about education. From its name to the organization of content by grade level, this is a tool to reinforce kids’ formal education in a fun way with lots of proprietary content.
Now because you can’t add new apps to this one like you can with other tablets, if you’re looking for a more traditional tablet experience with internet access and Angry Birds, the other options may be more your speed. And this one is fairly pricey at $199 for a tablet that maxes out after a couple years of use. But while The Little Scholar won’t replace your Nintendo 2DS in terms of entertainment value, it it could be a really terrific educational tool for you to use with your younger kiddos and keep the learning going outside the classroom.
The Little Scholar tablet is $199.99 and comes with a 100% money-back guarantee.
[CORRECTION: You can add more apps to this device. Parents enter a password to access the hidden app store, where they can buy any additional apps they like. Want more Little Scholars proprietary content? Got it. Want Angry Birds? Got that too.]