LeapFrog Releases New Online Learning World

Posted by at 2:34 pm on May 25, 2010

LeapFrog Enterprises has launched its online learning world, giving Leapster2 owners additional play at no additional cost. Children can earn LeapWorld tokens on the handheld, then use them to create a character, build a home and customize both. Exclusive online games and activities automatically adapt, so that as they play children can unlock math and literacy learning that is just right for their skill level. LeapWorld also offers “beyond basics” adventures on topics such as science, social studies and even life skills, for unique enhancements to Leapster2 play. Released October 2009 in closed beta, LeapWorld is now available free to all Leapster2 players, via the LeapFrog Connect Application.

The launch of LeapWorld makes Leapster2 the only educational gaming handheld to connect with an online learning world designed especially for children ages 4 to 9,with both online and offline play. Age-appropriate online learning games and activities are designed to offer additional fun for children and greater value for parents. And on June 7, 2010, LeapFrog will unveil a next-generation experience, also LeapWorld-compatible, for two ways to access online play. Because LeapFrog knows that safety comes first when children go online, LeapWorld is a “walled garden,” accessible only via the LeapFrog Connect Application. Parents can also get insights into what their children are playing and learning, via the free online Learning Path tool.

“We asked parents what they look for in online experiences for their children,” said Craig Hendrickson, senior vice president and chief product officer, “and parents said safety, fun, and education. In response, we are excited to launch LeapWorld, an online space that not only addresses these three criteria, but also sets a new standard for the innovative, personalized play that is possible only in the combined online and offline experiences LeapFrog offers.”

Children can earn tokens during Leapster2 handheld play to create a LeapWorld character and home, build it room by room, then decorate with furniture and accessories. Each room offers games and surprises, and a carnival space offers kids online-only activities that go “beyond ABCs and 123s.” For example, in Weather Town, kids can adjust air temperature and humidity, then click the “weather generator” to see what happens-”rain, snow, hail? And Ocean Rescue challenges players to maneuver a helicopter to gather ocean debris and sort it into the appropriate recycling bins.

Unique to LeapFrog is the Learning Path resource for parents, a free online tool that lets them see what their children are learning while they play-”both offline with the handheld and online in LeapWorld. The Learning Path also lets parents know which games engage their children most, as well as areas in which they may be excelling or need additional support. And regularly emailed updates and recommendations give parents the opportunity to share in children’s accomplishments and support their progress.

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