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Opinions on these reading wands? (or whatever they are called) - Page 5

post #81 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Of_60 View Post
It has nothing to do with not liking these toys. I have plenty of toys I don't like. It has to do with the "concern" for these toys, especially when coupled with the red herring that over use/misuse can cause problems for some kids. Isn't that true for a lot of things? Tv, junk food, etc.
Well we do junk food and TV here, and I'm still "concerned" about these types of educational toys. I don't see what one has to do with the other. I'm selective about what junk food my child gets at home, and I am discriminating about what TV she watches. Seems logical to me that I should be concerned about what toys she plays with. But color me a cowering stupid ingrate if you like because I've got to go get my baby who just woke up.
post #82 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by zipworth View Post
Computers are plastic.

And extremely environmentally toxic when they are "recycled"....
post #83 of 108
I have no opinion on the reader thing-ys, but I'm wondering: Do the folks that object to the reader thing-y also object to audio books? A parent recording a book? For all ages or just littles?
post #84 of 108
computers are also a necessity to do certain jobs. plastic battery operated toys not so much.
post #85 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by chfriend View Post
I have no opinion on the reader thing-ys, but I'm wondering: Do the folks that object to the reader thing-y also object to audio books? A parent recording a book? For all ages or just littles?

That's a great question.
post #86 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by riverscout View Post
Well we do junk food and TV here, and I'm still "concerned" about these types of educational toys. I don't see what one has to do with the other. I'm selective about what junk food my child gets at home, and I am discriminating about what TV she watches. Seems logical to me that I should be concerned about what toys she plays with.
But we're past basic concern and have moved right on through to "but SOME kids turn into little consumerist unimaginative zombies!".

Seriously, buy it. Don't buy. Like it. Don't like. I don't care. But latching on to WORST POSSIBLE SCENARIO and using that as a reason not to like something (similar to how bumbo seats cause deformed hips) is, as someone up thread mentioned, extremism.

Anyway, this is getting old. I have more gimmicky Christmas shopping to do. Next stop POWER WHEELS JEEP. She is going to love that giant hunk of TWELVE VOLT battery opperated plastic!
post #87 of 108
I really think if you could step back from your own issues you will see it is a valid concern. (consumerism and marketing to kids) It is to many of us here at MDC anyway, though not all obviously.


Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Of_60 View Post
But we're past basic concern and have moved right on through to "but SOME kids turn into little consumerist unimaginative zombies!".

Seriously, buy it. Don't buy. Like it. Don't like. I don't care. But latching on to WORST POSSIBLE SCENARIO and using that as a reason not to like something (similar to how bumbo seats cause deformed hips) is, as someone up thread mentioned, extremism.

Anyway, this is getting old. I have more gimmicky Christmas shopping to do. Next stop POWER WHEELS JEEP. She is going to love that giant hunk of TWELVE VOLT battery opperated plastic!
post #88 of 108
Nevermind....off topic.
post #89 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by chfriend View Post
I have no opinion on the reader thing-ys, but I'm wondering: Do the folks that object to the reader thing-y also object to audio books? A parent recording a book? For all ages or just littles?
This is a great question and since I have just come to this thread I will put my opinion here. We don't do battery operated learning toys ala leapfrog, etc. We do use audio books from the library. My son loves to listen to the long chapter books and when we have long car drives (think 3+ hours to visit the inlaws) he will listen to a book on tape since obviously I can't read to him while I drive. Audio books have inflection, tone, and a regular reading cadence to them that the learning toys I have encountered do not. Once my son can read the more complex books I am not sure how much we will use audio books, but for now it helps bridge the gap between his reading ability and his comprehension level. Also, I read chapter books to him all.the.time when we are home...often we will sit and read a 90 page chapter book before bed so he is definitely getting enough reading from me, whenever he wants it...just not in the car!
post #90 of 108
My inlaws have a deep deep love for all things Leap Frog. Every birthday, every holiday.

I don't actually believe they are educational. My older son is learning to read in much better ways and not from this thing.

But my honest gauge of whether a toy stays or not is if my child enjoys it. It's not what *I* think of the toy. It's not all about my ideals. I watch him with it and if he thinks it is fun and it's not going to cause him physical harm it stays.

Most of our leapfrog stuff has moved on to a more appreciative home b/c my boys do not enjoy it. This Tag thing though? He seems to think it's fun. So we have one. I think it's annoying, but it's not about me. It is kind of nice on long trips.
post #91 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by SomedayMom View Post

I don't actually believe they are educational. My older son is learning to read in much better ways and not from this thing.

But my honest gauge of whether a toy stays or not is if my child enjoys it.
Hmm...different experiences. I love the company...the LMAX taught my DD to read a week before she turned 3. I'm not into pushing my kids to do anything at that age, so while we did lots of reading, ambient word posters, etc. etc. I wasn't doing flashcards or anything actively obnoxious like that. She loved the little graphics, cartoons, games...and I'll be darned, it taught her to read (no, not just recognize sight words). It opened up her world.

And *my* honest gauge of whether a toy stays is totally if she likes it or not. WTH is the point otherwise? If this were so, my house would be covered in gender-neutral wooden blocks crafted by magical gnomes in a primeval forest from sustainable wood, yadda yadda yadda.
post #92 of 108
Oh nevermind. There's no point.
post #93 of 108
Yooper, we have rechargeable batteries. Tossing batteries in the trash is definitely a HUGE concern for us. We don't have much that needs batteries, but even from a cost stand point, it's so much more economical to use rechargeable.

And Riverscout, I don't celebrate plastic toys (well, except for the jeep, but I've wanted one for her long before she was born ). In the case of this book I have only questioned the concern that it will damage or impede childrens ability to read. This thread has taken a million turns, and unfortunately didn't turn out well, for my part I'm sorry. But back on the first page, my only point was to illustrate an electronic book A.) will not replace me as a parent, and B.) is not going to impede my kids ability to read BECAUSE this book is not her sole source of reading material. It's a toy. A game.

I don't get people's concern over this book. Is all. Like it or don't like it. But the concern I do not get. I really don't.
post #94 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Of_60 View Post
But back on the first page, my only point was to illustrate an electronic book A.) will not replace me as a parent, and B.) is not going to impede my kids ability to read BECAUSE this book is not her sole source of reading material. It's a toy. A game.

I don't get people's concern over this book. Is all. Like it or don't like it. But the concern I do not get. I really don't.
Okay, so I'll leave out environmental concerns about limited-life disposable battery-operated plastic toys, general dislike of annoying electronic toys and/or "educational" toys, and concerns about marketing to young children (Poingo books are all Disney including a Hanna Montana one ) and solely focus on those two points A)potential to replace parents and B) potential to impede reading ability.

***DISCLAIMER: The thoughts below are all my opinions and how I see these types of products and how that relates to me and my kids. They are not based on any evidence but rather my own gut which is what I am assuming those that do like them are basing their opinions on as well. I am not implying anything about any parent who may have purchased or allowed one of these items for their children nor am I implying their children have been damaged in any way.***

I'll start with A) potential to replace parent. Now while I don't think this reader could come in and replace me altogether and that I would never read to my child again, I'm concerned that it could eat into some of the time I get to spend reading to her because she would be having that need/want met by some electronic device. Would that necessarily happen? I don't know, but I see it as a potential problem, thus it arises concern.

Which leads me to B) potential to impede reading. If I were reading to her less, and this thing was reading to her more, I'd be concerned that her reading ability may be at least affected if not impeded. Also, I'm concerned about some of the activities that some of these things have on them in addition to just reading the stories. I don't care for the way a lot of these "educational" toys present information, and I think in some cases it can be detrimental.

To be clear, I'm not afraid of these toys. I'm certain my daughter would not be irreparably harmed if she played with one. But I think they are less than ideal to say the least and would strongly prefer that she not have one. If she chose to keep one that someone gave her, I'd probably let her, but I could see the potential for me having to actively mitigate the effects and having to impose some limits.
post #95 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by riverscout View Post
I'll start with A) potential to replace parent. Now while I don't think this reader could come in and replace me altogether and that I would never read to my child again, I'm concerned that it could eat into some of the time I get to spend reading to her because she would be having that need/want met by some electronic device.
Again, it's a toy, and it is not at all like being read to by a real person, so I don't understand how it can meet that need, much less cut into time being read to by a real person (any more than playing with a puzzle or any other toy?).

I also think it's kind of comical that it's now being referred to as an "electronic device" instead of a toy. I guess it sounds far more plausible that it would meet a child's reading needs/wants that way, than to just say your kid "likes to play with a toy". LOL

Agree to disagree I guess. I think it's benign and fun. You think it has the potential to reduce your child's desire to be read to by a real person, thus impeding the learning process by having that need met by an "electronic device".

I think a lot of toys can be detrimental if it's given enough thought. Exersaucers have been frowned upon because of potential musculoskeletal problems, but I often wonder if there were a wood and organic cotton version that sported chemical free natural rubber toys if it would be a complete hit among MDC members.

I also think there's an intellectual element to the reason toys are disliked, especially when talking to the "mainstream". It's like there needs to be a "real" reason to dislike a toys, especially to the inlaws, rather than just saying they hate it because it's plastic and takes batteries. I think this carries over to the natural philosophy as a whole, and I wonder how many people would really think things are that detrimental if they stripped away their personal convictions. Once in a while I'm willing to let go of my personal convictions for a bit of benign fun, and in the process am able to recognize that yes, while it's plastic and takes batteries, and that no, I normally don't really like those kinds of toys, that's not as dangerous and detrimental as the group think would have me to believe. And I'm also completely willing to accept that this makes me an NFL sell out. One thing I am not is hard on myself for allowing the odd peice of "junk" to come through the door. Having said that, as I sit and type this, I can't really think of a single toy that has batteries in it. Oh wait, she has an electric key board.

I dunno, I think it takes too much energy to analyze toys this much, and considering the fact that we have a pretty modest electronic array of toys I just can't convince myself to devise a reason to hate something simply because it's mainstream (because in order to come up with a reason aside from it being plastic and taking batteries, that's what I'd have to do.. the learning issues would be a big stretch for me).

Anyway, rant over, now I'm done. I don't get the concern, and to answer the OP'ers question one more time, I'm kinda "meh.. whatever, it's a toy" on the whole subject.
post #96 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Of_60 View Post
Again, it's a toy, and it is not at all like being read to by a real person, so I don't understand how it can meet that need, much less cut into time being read to by a real person (any more than playing with a puzzle or any other toy?).

I also think it's kind of comical that it's now being referred to as an "electronic device" instead of a toy. I guess it sounds far more plausible that it would meet a child's reading needs/wants that way, than to just say your kid "likes to play with a toy". LOL

Agree to disagree I guess. I think it's benign and fun. You think it has the potential to reduce your child's desire to be read to by a real person, thus impeding the learning process by having that need met by an "electronic device".

I think a lot of toys can be detrimental if it's given enough thought. Exersaucers have been frowned upon because of potential musculoskeletal problems, but I often wonder if there were a wood and organic cotton version that sported chemical free natural rubber toys if it would be a complete hit among MDC members.

I also think there's an intellectual element to the reason toys are disliked, especially when talking to the "mainstream". It's like there needs to be a "real" reason to dislike a toys, especially to the inlaws, rather than just saying they hate it because it's plastic and takes batteries. I think this carries over to the natural philosophy as a whole, and I wonder how many people would really think things are that detrimental if they stripped away their personal convictions. Once in a while I'm willing to let go of my personal convictions for a bit of benign fun, and in the process am able to recognize that yes, while it's plastic and takes batteries, and that no, I normally don't really like those kinds of toys, that's not as dangerous and detrimental as the group think would have me to believe. And I'm also completely willing to accept that this makes me an NFL sell out. One thing I am not is hard on myself for allowing the odd peice of "junk" to come through the door. Having said that, as I sit and type this, I can't really think of a single toy that has batteries in it. Oh wait, she has an electric key board.

I dunno, I think it takes too much energy to analyze toys this much, and considering the fact that we have a pretty modest electronic array of toys I just can't convince myself to devise a reason to hate something simply because it's mainstream (because in order to come up with a reason aside from it being plastic and taking batteries, that's what I'd have to do.. the learning issues would be a big stretch for me).

Anyway, rant over, now I'm done. I don't get the concern, and to answer the OP'ers question one more time, I'm kinda "meh.. whatever, it's a toy" on the whole subject.
You know I don't spend a lot of time worrying about these things. I was merely explaining what my possible concerns were with these types of toys because you seems so perplexed. I don't lose sleep over it. I'm not some kind of toy extremist like I mentioned early. I don't complain about the toys my inlaws give the kids. I just don't like these particular types of toys. I have no idea why that seems to bother you so much or why you seem so dead set on dismissing everyone who does not feel like you do or why you seem to be assuming everyone here is some kind of drone who can't think for themselves. I'm sorry I even bothered to try and have a rational discussion with you.
post #97 of 108
I'm not crazy about these and won't buy one. I prefer more natural sounding language, and most of the books are too commercial character-based for my taste. If one were given to me and I couldn't return it (my ILs take everything out of the box and set it up before gifting - they have bad memories of a kid screaming for a toy that they couldn't get to work), I'd be OK with DS using it some. I'd make sure not to change how much I read to him, though.

I used to really dislike LeapFrog, but now I think they have a (small) place. My DS has the Fridge Phonics and taught himself the letter sounds from it. He knows all the sounds and is combining them. Not reading (he's only 2.5), but certainly saying sounds of letters he sees. This is something I wouldn't have thought to teach a 2 year old, but he really latched onto it and loves the letter magnets. So I do believe these toys can be "educational", and I support educational toys assuming they aren't forced upon an uninterested kid and aren't replacing other kinds of play (artistic, musical, physical, imaginative, etc).
post #98 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by riverscout View Post
You know I don't spend a lot of time worrying about these things. I was merely explaining what my possible concerns were with these types of toys because you seems so perplexed. I don't lose sleep over it. I'm not some kind of toy extremist like I mentioned early. I don't complain about the toys my inlaws give the kids. I just don't like these particular types of toys. I have no idea why that seems to bother you so much or why you seem so dead set on dismissing everyone who does not feel like you do or why you seem to be assuming everyone here is some kind of drone who can't think for themselves. I'm sorry I even bothered to try and have a rational discussion with you.
I was really under the assumption discussions could be had even though people disagreed. I'm sorry for assuming that.
post #99 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cascadian View Post
If this were so, my house would be covered in gender-neutral wooden blocks crafted by magical gnomes in a primeval forest from sustainable wood
I know this was meant snarky, but it brought up such a lovely image.

I do wish there were more "gender-neutral" toys 'cause my dd's aren't fans of the obnoxious pink all "girl" toys are made off.

And we have that great gnome tree house that we got second hand.
post #100 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by North_Of_60 View Post
I was really under the assumption discussions could be had even though people disagreed. I'm sorry for assuming that.
You're kidding right? This is your idea of disagreeing? IMO you are being incredibly dismissive.
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