LeapFrog: LeapPad Low-down

 Toys, Books & Movies  Comments Off on LeapFrog: LeapPad Low-down
Jul 122019
 

A few weeks ago I promised you a more detailed post about the LeapFrog LeapPad, one of the most popular kids tablets across the globe. As a loyal LeapFrog family we’ve been using LeapPads from the moment they were first released (in fact before that we even had its predecessors, the good old Leapster GS and Leapster Explorer) and many years on we remain big LeapPad fans. I regularly receive emails from readers to ask my opinion so I thought I’d put my two cents in…

While I will mainly focus on the four latest LeapPad models I would like to stress that there is still a big market for the older styles (LeapPad 1, LeapPad 2 and LeapPad 3) as well. You may not be able to find them brand new, however you can easily pick one up second hand on Gumtree, eBay or Marketplace (often with a heap of cool game cartridges included) at a bargain price which is a great way to start your LeapPad journey.

The durable design means that the earlier devices have lots of play left in them and you can still connect them to your computer with a USB cable to download new apps from the App Centre. Just make sure you tick the matching ‘Filter by Product’ box in the App Centre when searching for new apps. The majority of ‘old’ LeapFrog game cartridges are also compatible with the newest LeapPads, so they hold their value well. Remember you can always upgrade your device later while holding onto your game cartridges collection.

Good to know: I know I have mentioned this in previous posts but just in case you missed it… When you purchase apps in the App Centre they are not allocated to a specific LeapPad only but added to your LeapFrog Parent Account instead. From there on you can install them on each LeapFrog device (up to five) connected to your account. So instead of having to buy the app for each LeapPad individually you only need to purchase it once and then all your kids/LeapPads can enjoy the same game. 

Because your purchased apps are connected to your LeapFrog parent account, when you decide to upgrade your old LeapPad to a newer one you simply remove the app from the old one and install it on the new one. Just link the new LeapPad up to the same parent account and you can automatically enjoy all your previously purchased apps, how easy is that?

LeapFrog LeapPad UltraBack to today when the most popular LeapPad models are the LeapPad Ultra, LeapPad Platinum, LeapPad Ultimate and (a little different to the others) LeapFrog Epic. Compared to the first models these four are noticeably bigger, fancier and faster with front and back camera and beautiful full colour screens, making kids feel very grown-up with their own modern tablet. LeapPads are designed to be safe for small hands, you can protect the LeapPad Ultra with a gel skin (sold separately), the LeapFrog Epic comes with a rubber cover and the other two have a built-in shock-proof bumper.

Unlike the LeapPad 1 and 2 all newer LeapPads are rechargeable, there is no fiddling with costly batteries that keep running out and a charger is included. Each LeapPad comes with a selection of included apps so it’s ready to go straight away. Kids can play games, keep on track with a calendar, a clock and a notepad, take videos, snap photos and record voice memos and edit them into their own unique art, listen to music and much more.

LeapFrog is all about learning fun, each and every LeapFrog game is developed by educational experts to learn, practise and improve important skills through play. You can grow your personal LeapFrog Library by purchasing new games in the App Centre where you can select games that focus on the learning area of your choosing. Using games featuring popular characters like PJ Masks, Peppa Pig, Frozen and Paw Patrol and many others even the most stubborn learners will fall in love with learning.

The amazing thing about LeapFrog is that it recognises your child’s achievements and progress and adjusts content and challenges to match your child’s learning level, this keeps things fun and interesting all the time. A LeapPad allows for multiple player profiles so each child in the family can play at their own level and pace, now that is clever!

Hip Tip: The LeapFrog App Centre regularly runs brilliant sales (eg. 30% off all apps, buy 2 get 1 free) so parents can stock up on a bunch of cool new apps at a fantastic price. We usually do this before school holidays or big family trips to surprise the kids and save a lot. You don’t even have to install them straight away if you want to keep them for a rainy day. Keep an eye on the app or the LeapFrog Australia Facebook page for the next app sale.

All four LeapPads can be connected to WiFi if approved by parents (protected with a parent lock code). Having the WiFi connection set up means app downloads and updates are a breeze, there is no need to connect to a PC. Children can also browse the virtual LeapFrog Rewards Store where they can trade the reward tokens they have earnt in their games for game add-ons. There are NEVER any in-app purchases, children have no way of accidentally buying anything and there are no ‘temptations’ which is a real win for LeapFrog.

Most importantly the WiFi function provides access to a completely safe online environment called LeapSearch. All LeapSearch content has been carefully handpicked and approved by LeapFrog team of parents and education experts, so you can rest assured all web pages, videos, images and games they encounter are 100% kid-appropriate. As a parent I love the fact that it allows curious children to enjoy the freedom of exploring ‘the internet’ and searching for things that interest them without the worries of the world wide web.

LeapFrog EpicSadly the LeapFrog Epic is not that easy to get in Australia but it is definitely worth a mention. Unlike the other LeapPads this tablet runs on the well known Android operating system. The way it works and feels is a little different (in a good way), it is more customisable (not only the dashboard and background but also eg. the local weather) and if desired you can even add compatible Android apps and Google Play apps to it. Personally we only stick to the LeapFrog App Centre but I can see how to some this could be nice bonus.

Do we have a favourite? I think my children all have different opinions and they often share/swap between the different models that we have purchased over the years. Hattie is chuffed with her LeapPad Platinum, Juliet adores her LeapPad Ultimate and the twins feel very special with the LeapFrog Epic. We have purchased some of our LeapPads new and some second hand and I haven’t any issues at all with either, but of course if a new one fits in your budget and you prefer the peace of mind of warranty the newest LeapPad Ultimate is your best bet. Each to their own but in our family all LeapPads are winners!

Fair is fair, while there are a million things I love there are obviously also a few small things I dislike about each of the designs. Most of them are really petty dislikes I have to say but I promised to be complete:

  • I preferred the hard tip stylus of the LeapPad Ultra (and earlier LeapPads) over the soft tip styluses of the other three. It doesn’t wear down as easily and is cheaper to replace.
  • I wish the LeapFrog Epic would take game cartridges so we could use our game collection instead of having to download all the apps. I was also a bit sad that a rare few of our old games would not work on the LeapPad Ultimate, they do work on all previous models though.
  • When small children play their LeapPad Ultimate in landscape position the ‘on/off’ button sits exactly under their little hand so they sometimes accidentally turn it off.
  • The LeapFrog Epic is the only tablet that works with the LeapFrog TocoMail App. This fantastic app lets children send/receive basic emails to/from pre-approved contacts so our twins can communicate with their grandparents overseas which they really enjoy. I really hope they make this app available to the other LeapPads too!

Although I think I have covered a lot of the questions I received, I probably have missed some too. If there is anything at all you would like to know just get in touch and I am happy to help. Good luck finding your perfect LeapPad and enjoy the LeapFrog journey.

To find out more about LeapFrog, to browse the range and to locate stockist near you visit www.leapfrog.com.au.

Pawesome PAW Patrol picks

 Sales & Savings, Toys, Books & Movies  Comments Off on Pawesome PAW Patrol picks
Jun 242019
 

paw-patrol

I regularly receive emails from both new and longtime readers asking me for advice on hip finds I shared in the past and one of the most popular questions is always: Does your family still love LeapFrog and which LeapPad should we get? I am working on a longer post about this (stay tuned) but our short and adamant answer is YES! Even after many years we still adore our LeapPads and I highly recommend them to everyone. We recently purchased a new LeapPad game for our littlest PAW Patrol fan and it is so much fun, I just had to give it a quick shout-out:

The LeapFrog PAW Patrol Collection learning game (RRP $34.99, ages 4-7) contains both a learning game and an eBook featuring your favourite PAW Patrol pups, offering kids two different ways to play and learn in one game cartridge. Although Miss Hattie is not four just yet and therefore a bit on the young side, she is very keen and the PAW Patrol: Ready for Action! learning game is definitely getting the wheels turning inside her little head.

The aim of the game is to solve practical problems, PAW Patrol style. On their way to find a bunch of missing kittens the brave rescue pups encounter a range of obstacles, time to put those brains to work and find the right pup and the right tool for each ‘problem’. From helicopters to fire trucks, from ladders to nets, from diggers to submarines, from hooks to hoses, this fun puzzle game helps develop reasoning skills, teaches cause and effect, practises problem solving and more and you even earn cool badges along the way.

Young readers can work on their literacy skills too with the PAW Patrol: The Great Robot Rescue eBook. Ryder has created a super clever Robo Dog, but when his antenna gets damaged by a fall Robo Dog is uncontrollable and turns the whole town upside down. Ryder and the pups work together to catch Robo Dog and put everything back in order. Kids can listen to the story while flicking the pages and reading along. This is an excellent way to help kids practise common sight words, they can point at individual words to hear them and trigger cool sounds/reactions by touching the pictures on each page.

Hip Tip: If you like quick and easy you can also download these cool apps directly from the LeapFrog App Centre, meaning you don’t even have to leave the house. As with all LeapFrog apps when you purchase the PAW Patrol: Ready for Action! learning game and/or the PAW Patrol: The Great Robot Rescue eBook online you can install them on multiple LeapPad devices yet you only pay once, perfect for large families like ours.

Another pawesome find is this flip-lid PAW Patrol Learning Watch (RRP $24.95, ages 3-6) which you can strap to your wrist and is filled with loads of interactive PAW Patrol fun. It is no surprise that Hattie had her heart set on Skye and proudly shows off her pink gadget to everyone she meets. I admit it is quite large in size so it can be a little tricky to combine with bulky winter coats but nothing will stop her wearing it anywhere and anytime.

Just like any good watch it tells the time, it has a timer/stopwatch and a working alarm. A little advice: Make sure you know how to turn the settings off or you’ll be woken by the cuckoo clock every hour, it took us a while to determine the source of the hourly cluck cluck and locate the noisy chicken! You can customise the look of your watch with 12 interchangeable digital clock faces and it even has a glowing light for midnight time checks.

Designed by the toy specialists at VTech the PAW Patrol Learning Watch is made with real children in mind so the design is not just practical but playful too. The watch plays sounds and phrases from the show and comes with four built-in PAW Patrol mini games that focus on different learning skills like making matches, basic addition and subtraction and problem solving. With only four different buttons the watch is surprisingly easy to master, which gives kids a great feeling of independence.

The PAW Patrol Learning Watch is available in Skye pink, Chase blue and Marshall red from your local Big W store and other good toy stores across Australia.

Sale Alert: A little birdie told me that the watch is currently on sale at BIG W for just $19, go and snap up a bargain!

No job is too big, no pup is too small. Whether you love Marshall, Chase or Skye, or adore Zuma, Rocky, Rubble or Everest, there is a perfect PAW Patrol pal for everyone.

Read and Play with Peppa

 Sales & Savings  Comments Off on Read and Play with Peppa
Jul 122018
 

We’ve only been at the new school for two weeks but for miss Sybbie the move has been a real eye-opener. All of a sudden she is super keen to practise her sight words, write her numbers, read her readers and borrow as many books from the library as she can possibly carry. I am so excited to see another little bookworm in the making!

The toy specialists at LeapFrog know all too well that learning new things can be tricky, so instead of it being a challenging chore they make learning entertaining and exciting! Take for example the new Peppa Pig Learning Game:

Designed specifically for the LeapPad learning tablets Read and Play with Peppa (RRP $34.95, ages 3-5) allows young children to enjoy some screen time whilst mastering a heap of new skills at the same time. Usually Sybbie not that excited to tidy up, but it turns out that tidying up with Peppa is actually lots of fun.

Guided by the alphabet little learners need to help Peppa and her brother George to put all their toys back in the toy basket. They will learn to follow simple instructions, recognise different letters and their sounds, discover what their place is in the alphabet, learn about beginning sounds, match pictures with words and more.

In between the chores Daddy Pig lets them play a little game: the more alphabet toys they tidy up, the more games they unlock! In the mini-games kids can try their hand at things like practise balancing the ball (balance the LeapPad to keep the ball steady) before it rolls away, building a train track, playing catch-the-toy with Daddy Pig or spotting the difference.

Once all the tidying up is completed kids can sit down and enjoy story time with Peppa’s Fancy Dress Party. Young readers can listen to the entire story but also touch individual words to hear them or look them up in the ‘dictionary’.

Created and approved by educational specialists LeapFrog learning games and apps expose children to important areas of learning (eg. maths, reading, science, geography and more) that will greatly benefit them on their educational journey. Parents can explore all the different games/apps in the LeapFrog App Centre and use the handy skill selector on the left to find the game(s) that are a perfect match for your child’s interests and developmental needs.

To find out more about LeapFrog, to browse the range and to locate stockist near you visit www.leapfrog.com.au.

LeapPad Ultimate by LeapFrog

 Toys, Books & Movies  Comments Off on LeapPad Ultimate by LeapFrog
May 282018
 

Woohoo! For a while it seemed like our holiday would never come any closer but with less than 3 months to go we’re finally getting there. I have started packing the first gifts in our suitcases, stocked up on new pyjamas for everyone and set out six backpacks for our six little travellers. When you spend 24 hours travelling (and 5 weeks away from home) you have to bring some great boredom busters (read sanity savers), which is where LeapFrog comes in:

Juliet has owned her LeapPad Ultimate (RRP $199.95, ages 3-9) for about 8 months now so we’ve tested it through and through and I can not speak highly enough of this kid-friendly tablet. Designed by the toy-experts at LeapFrog and backed by a team of dedicated educators this amazing tablet is all about custom learning whilst having fun and staying safe.

Where do I begin? Let’s start with the basics, the LeapPad Ultimate (8GB) has all the popular tablet features like a powerful quad-core processor, dual camera to take photos and videos, WiFi connection (more on that later!), a music player, rechargeable battery and more. It also comes preloaded with a whole heap of cool games and apps that have been thoroughly tested to be appropriate, educational and safe.

From practising your ABC with Letter Factory Flash Cards to fun with animals and learning to care for them in Pet Pad Party, from finding out interesting milky way facts in the Cosmic Cleanup Science Game to solving a mystery in the Dog Show Detectives Interactive Storybook and much more, there is lots to discover when you first tun on your LeapPad Ultimate.

Of course there is plenty more where this came from, so you can expand your content with your choice of 1000+ LeapFrog learning games, videos and eBooks as your child grows and his/her interests change. You can either download them directly to your LeapPad via the LeapFrog App Centre (ideal for last-minute add-ons before a trip) or you can buy selected cartridges at your favourite LeapFrog stockist.

What really makes LeapFrog stand out, and makes its games so much more than just a game, is the special Just For Me learning technology. Without any effort from parents and without any need to change settings this clever technology recognises your child’s progress and automatically adjusts learning levels within the game. This keeps games fun and challenging and helps those little brains develop further.

As a mum of six I know all too well that every child is unique, their interests are different, they develop at different speeds and they struggle with different things too. I love that you can create a personal account for multiple children on one LeapPad device, so they can each access their own content and the games are tailored to their specific knows and needs. When it comes to selecting new apps for your tablet you can search by age and skill which helps you make the right educational choice for your child.

If the thought of allowing your children access to the internet terrifies you I have good news for you. Your child’s safety is LeapFrog’s top priority, which is why they have created a unique Kid-Safe Web Browser. All web content, videos, photos and pages that are accessible via LeapSearch have been triple checked and are deemed safe and appropriate by the LeapFrog learning experts. Here’s to the wonderful world wide web without the worries!

Many parents feel that tablets and small hands are not always a good combination and it’s true, accidents happen to the best of us! Thankfully the LeapPad Ultimate is durable and kid-tough, featuring a shatter-safe screen, super strong frame and wrap around bumper for extra protection. Even better, from the end of June you can get your hands on a new LeapPad Ultimate bundle which comes with a complimentary zip-up Carry Case to keep your LeapPad safe while travelling or in storage.

The LeapPad Ultimate + Carry Case Bundle will be available at BigW, good toy stores and selected online retailers.

To find out more about LeapFrog, to browse the range and to locate stockist near you visit www.leapfrog.com.au.

Dec 012015
 

LeapFrog Epic

Christmas Countdown – Day 1

I know lately the spotlight has been mostly on our youngest family member but our little Harriet is not the only one who is growing rapidly. Tommie and Olivia are now seven and about to finish year 1 with flying colours, we are so proud of them! If you are a regular Hip Little One reader you will know that I often credit LeapFrog for their big love of (and excellent results in) reading and maths so I am really excited to see what’s new from LeapFrog this Christmas:

LeapFrog Epic

The brand new LeapFrog Epic (RRP $199, ages 3-9) will without a doubt be one of the hottest gift under the Christmas tree this year, this much anticipated kids tablet has only just hit the shelves and it’s already flying out the door!

LeapFrog EpicWe all know children grow and change rapidly (a bit too rapid if you ask me!), which is why the LeapFrog Epic is designed to grow and change just like they do. Explore – Play – Imagine – Create, the Epic is packed with fun and educational content tailored to your child’s age and stage and it is the first LeapFrog tablet to work on the well known Android operating system (Android OS. 4.4).

As a loyal LeapFrog user I can safely say the Epic is a big step up from previous LeapFrog tablets. It is very fast, responsive and easy to use, the full-colour graphics are truly amazing and it comes (and can be expanded) with loads of content that is versatile and relevant for children of different ages. In simple terms the LeapFrog Epic is a sturdy, safe, child friendly and age appropriate version of an ordinary tablet.

LeapFrog Epic tablet

As we already own previous LeapFrog products setting up the tablet was easy. We signed in with our account details and the Epic was automatically loaded with our children’s ages and development details, as well as previously downloaded apps. The Epic can be shared by multiple users (great value for families!), who each log in individually to access their own personal Epic world.

DSC_1330 copy

Starting at the home screen children can customise the interactive background, decorate it to their liking and fill it will shortcuts to their favourite apps. From the simple, but important, basics like the local weather and the clock to a calculator and calendar, from learning about nature and the human body to recording songs and making up stories, from a colourful and creative art app to puzzles and an imaginary pet to raise and play with, the options are endless.

Epic LeapFrogThe LeapFrog Epic connects to the internet using WiFi which can be turned on and off. Initially children can only access a pre-approved library of content through LeapSearch so you know all content is appropriate and safe, but if desired you can expand your child’s online world by manually adding other websites to your ‘safe’ list. I find it very reassuring that our kids can not accidentally view webpages that we would not approve of, unsavoury pictures and pages are sometimes just one click away so this protective border is extremely valuable to me.

The smart thing about LeapFrog is that it automatically recognised your child’s achievements and progress and adjusts content and challenges to match your child’s learning level, this keeps things fun and interesting all the time. Our 5-year old likes and is able to do different things than our 7-year old and the Epic effortlessly recognises this, how clever! Like most kids our children love it when their achievements are being acknowledged and LeapFrog does a wonderful job at that by e.g. awarding badges or special bonuses.

DSC_1337 copy

There are so many cool things to love about the LeapFrog Epic, some of our favourites are the ability to see the weather in other places around the world, marking our plans on the calendar, recording videos and songs, playing Alphabet Stew, learning the Word of the Day and much more. You can keep adding to your LeapFrog Epic library by downloading new apps from the every growing LeapFrog App Centre. One of my personal top features is the ability to stay in charge of your child’s play time by setting a timer. Parents can control exactly how long and when their child is allowed to use the Epic, e.g. 30 minutes on weekdays and 1 hour on weekends. What an easy way to manage screen time, keeping rules clear for everyone.

LeapFrog Epic packagingSome of the boring but important facts: The LeapFrog Epic is rechargeable and comes with a USB charger/wall adaptor so you can recharge how, when and where you want. It has a 1.3 GHz Quad-Core Processor, beautiful 7″ Capacitive Touch Screen, attaches stylus and a 2MP front and rear camera to take photos, record videos and sound. The 16GB memory can be expanded to 32GB using a Micro SD Card.

The LeapFrog Epic is exclusively available at JB Hi-Fi stores Australia wide and online at www.jbhifi.com.au.

To find out more about LeapFrog, to browse the range and to locate a stockist near you visit www.leapfrog.com.au.

For your chance to win a LeapFrog Epic (RRP $199) enter our giveaway below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

LeapFrog LeapPad 3

 Toys, Books & Movies  Comments Off on LeapFrog LeapPad 3
Nov 182014
 

Right now kids around the globe are writing down their favourite toys on crumpled pieces of paper, dreaming of a special Christmas morning spent unwrapping gifts around the tree. In the meanwhile Santa’s helpers, responsible for the shopping, scratch their heads trying to select the items from the wish list that get the thumbs up from both children and their parents. If your child has requested a tablet and you feel they are too young you better think twice, check out the newest design from LeapFrog:

LeapPad 3

The LeapPad 3 Learning Tablet (RRP $169, green or pink) is specifically designed for children aged 3-9 years old: it’s fun, compact, portable, kid-tough and give your child access to a world of educational, age-appropriate content that is approved by learning experts. The sturdy device has been thoroughly drop tested and features a shatter-proof screen as well as special impact zones for added protection.

LeapPad 3 pinkThe LeapPad 3 is fitted with a 2-way camera, microphone and comes with 10 free apps to get you started, additionally you can purchase separate game cartridges that work on any LeapPad tablet. With 4GB of storage space there is plenty of room to store your learning fun and personalised videos, photos, music and artwork and through the LeapFrog Learning Library you can purchase more than 700 Educator Approved games, eBooks and apps.

But there is more to the LeapPad 3 than the learning apps and games, using a WiFi connection children can browse pre-screened internet content using LeapSearch™ powered by Zui™. Unlike with many ordinary tablets parents can feel confident that all information, pictures and videos their child sees on the LeapPad 3 are safe and age appropriate and there are no accidental downloads or purchases, spam or pop-ups. The internet connection can be turned off if desired. Our 6-year old son is very eager to read, learn and discover, he is like a sponge and loves having so much interesting information at his finger tips.

The LeapPad 3 has a built-in rechargeable battery with a 6+ hour battery life making it ideal for car rides and plane trips. The battery can be recharged using the included USB charger/adapter, so easy and much cheaper than single use batteries! You can use the same USB cable to connect the LeapPad 3 to your computer where you can follow your child’s progress, download and upload content and customise your child’s LeapFrog experience by name, age and skills. Using LeapFrog Connect parents can create different profiles for different users so each player enjoys personalised play, great for siblings!

LeapPad 3 GreenOur three older children all have their own LeapPad and the effects of their LeapPad play on their school work is very noticeable, even their teacher has asked me what my secret is. We actually call it a different way of doing homework, it’s all about finding ways to make learning fun and engage your child in a way that appeals to them. Sometimes they don’t want to sit down to read a book yet they are happy to read an eBook or play a spelling game so we’re still working with the same theme.

In our family we are currently using the LeapPad 2, LeapPad Ultra and LeapPad 3, they’re all excellent designs but the LeapPad 3 is definitely my favourite model to-date. I love the light weight (it’s considerably lighter than the Ultra and even slightly lighter than the LeapPad2), built-in battery, impressive 5-inch high resolution full colour screen and fast speed. Between the LeapPad 3 and LeapPad Ultra the kids really enjoy the peer-to-peer play and chat function, they can send each other symbols and put together simple messages or visit each others pet in Pet Pad Party. To use this function the two LeapPads have to be in the same room so it is completely safe and children can not connect with strangers.

LeapPad 3 Carry CaseOur 6-year old daughter has claimed the LeapPad 3 as hers so we’ve purchased the cute pink LeapPad 3 Carry Case to keep it well protected when not in use. The new carry case has a handy handle so children can safely carry it like a bag and the revamped inside features a neat pocket/pouch to keep the LeapPad 3 safe and snug inside when you zip open the carry case.

To find out more about LeapFrog, to browse the range and to locate stockist near you visit www.leapfrog.com.au.

LeapFrog in our Luggage

 Toys, Books & Movies  Comments Off on LeapFrog in our Luggage
Sep 082014
 

When people hear we just travelled to Europe with 4 kids under 6 they usually say we’re crazy (which we probably are!). I admit that it is not an easy, and definitely not a relaxing, journey, but after having made the same trip several times I have become quite the expert at packing backpacks full of entertainment to help get us through the  long flights and stopover.

LeapPads

I always start a few months in advance by getting each child a new backpack and adding books, activity pads, games, play sets and markers as I pick them up on sale. I never show the kids what’s in their backpacks until we’re on the plane, they love unpacking their new goodies and they’re happy to share with each other. This time I also surprised them with some new LeapFrog games for their LeapPads which were a huge hit:

LeapFrog Learning Ganme Sesame StreetFor miss 3 I picked Sesame Street – Solve it with Elmo, Abby and Super Grover 2.0! ($44.99, ages 3-5) who absolutely loves Abby Cadabby. With the start of kindy coming up this is a great game to practice basic pre-school skills like problem solving, logic and reasoning, balancing and cause and effect using friendly, familiar characters and through simple games that appeal to young children.

The game also touches on other interesting concepts like magnetism, machines, technology and engineering which were very popular with master 5. Miss 3 particularly liked adding little pigs to Abby’s boat to make it balance and navigating it across the river, they all thought catching chickens in Super Grover 2.0’s go-kart was hilarious.

LeapFrog Jake and the Neverland PiratesDisney’s Jake and the Neverland Pirates ($44.99, ages 3-5) is another fantastic game for this younger age group. The aim of the game is to outsmart captain Hook with a series of mini games that will earn you coins for your treasure chest. The simple exercises are a great way to teach children to listen to and follow instructions, a skill that is very important at pre-school and of course at home too.

Practise your numbers by counting coins, learn about shapes and matching by fixing up a boat, find your way to the treasure chest by hopping over the lava river and much more, it’s a perfect learning game for little adventurers.

LeapFrog SpongeBobAnyone who knows our master 5 will know that he loves being challenged, he always wants to test his abilities by reading a tricky book or doing homework that’s above his level. When I spotted SpongeBob Squarepants – Fists of Foam ($44.99, ages 6-9) on sale I figured it would definitely keep him busy on our trip. Mathematics, geometry and fractions, it’s enough to make me shiver but he was super excited to try it out (not a child of his mother obviously!).

Clearly aimed at older children this particular SpongeBob Squarepants game (there are other SpongeBob Squarepants titles too) does involve a bit of ninja karate, that sounds nicer than fighting and in this case it is quite harmless in my opinion. Players will have to have some reading skills to be able to understand the story line. I hope master 5 is still this excited about fractions when he has to do it at school.

LeapFrog CrayolaOf course the LeapPad already comes with a selection of apps including the Art Studio App but miss 5 is such a crafty person I knew she would really enjoy the Crayola Art Adventure ($44.99, ages 3-7) Learning Game as well. Using signature ‘Crayola’ tools like PipSqueak Markers players can work their way through different rooms, games and challenges and solve the mystery of the missing colours.

I think this is a really lovely game because it combines art, colour and design and even music (something our miss 5 can never get enough of) whilst covering basic skills like tracing lines, discovering patterns, solving puzzles, matching shapes and learning the names of shapes in the process. There is no time pressure, it is just good, calm, crafty fun.

To find out more about LeapFrog, to browse the range and to locate stockist near you visit www.leapfrog.com.au.