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Best gaming console for toddlers

by sergei_novik / November 12, 2011 5:52 PM PST

<span id="INSERTION_MARKER"><span id="INSERTION_MARKER">Hi there<span><span>

<span><span>The last couple of weeks I have been struggling trying to choose a game console for my 2-year old boy and cannot come up with a decision.
<span><span>Any pointers in the right direction will be a blessing.
<span><span>

<span><span>Thanks in advance

sergei_novik has chosen the best answer to their question. View answer
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All Answers

Best Answer chosen by sergei_novik

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Probably none
by Jimmy Greystone / November 12, 2011 10:08 PM PST

Probably none. At 2 years old, even if your kid has an off the charts IQ, the cognitive areas of the brain simply haven't developed enough for any game console, educational or otherwise, to be of any real use. It could, in fact, be a hindrance to mental development.

For about the first 5 or so years, one of the best things you can do, is spend time talking to your child. Get a bunch of children's books and read them to him. This will pay serious dividends when it comes to his language skill development later in life. Study after study shows that the more parents talk to their kids, the better they tend to do later in life academically.

I know it's tempting to just give your kid some kind of device, or sit him down in front of the TV, just so you can have a few minutes to yourself, but at such a young age, you'd be doing your son a great disservice. When he gets to 7-8 you can think about a game console, since by then he can at least cognitively process most of what is going on.

So-called educational toys, like those Leapfrog things, are a crock IMO. By the time they would have any real benefit, the kid is probably too old to have any interest in them. The kid isn't actually learning anything, just responding to stimuli. All they've learned is that if they hit a specific button at a specific time, something good happens.

If you're really interested in your son's mental development, take that money for a game console, and buy children's books. Spend an hour or two a day reading them to your son. You will be absolutely sick of those books by the time you're done, so you just have to keep telling yourself that you're doing this for your son. Then when he's old enough to start reading on his own (which you should encourage, since reading improves spelling, logical thinking skills, grammar, and a host of other useful skills) you can just donate the kid's books to a local library or something. Then, in 5-6 years, you're welcome to come back and ask about game consoles again.

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Best gaming console for toddlers by sergei_novik
by sergei_novik / November 13, 2011 1:51 PM PST
In reply to: Probably none

Not sure if you will believe me but your advice is the answer I was looking for in order to stop the avalanche that is my wife. And it has worked, she would have never accepted these facts if they came from me, so thank you very much.
As for getting to the "sick of those books" stage, I have already reached that point and beyond :). I myself think that there are few things as good as reading books and hopefully will be able to pass that to my boy.
Thank you.

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Glad to be of service
by Jimmy Greystone / November 14, 2011 9:45 AM PST

Glad to be of service. I agree that reading is a highly valuable skill. I'm not exactly anti-TV or video games (having 3 game consoles not more than 15ft from me right now), but everything in moderation.

When your son is old enough to maybe start playing video games, you might want to try and encourage them to play role playing games, like the Final Fantasy series. While they've added more and more voice acting over the years, they still have captions for most of the dialogue, and at least with me, it's almost impossible for me to ignore words if they're on the screen. And those games are a lot like interactive novels, with character development, deep plots, etc. So, it'll help maintain your kid's attention span while not coming off like you're anti-video games.

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Best gaming console for toddlers
by sergei_novik / November 14, 2011 4:07 PM PST
In reply to: Glad to be of service

Thank you for the advice, and although I could never really connect with the role playing games myself, there were probably "some" improvements made in the field in the last 10-15 years since last I checked.

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Actually
by hereisjenna / January 31, 2012 12:41 PM PST
In reply to: Probably none

I seen a show on the discovery channel that showed significant increase in motor skills in children under age 8 when given a visually stimulating activity where physical movement and mental calculation is required.

I know when children hug a psp 5 hours a day can have some sort of effect on the brain development as well as vision in young children but I believe controlled usage among children isnt a bad idea. Yo know what they say, an above-average player on a FPS game has as much hand eye coordination as a brain surgeon.

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But at the same time
by Jimmy Greystone / February 1, 2012 11:43 AM PST
In reply to: Actually

But at the same time, you could choose to spend time with the kid doing some actual activity which will replicate many of the same functions. Like maybe tossing a whiffle ball and having the kid try and hit it with a really light bat. Or you could get some legos/duplos and have them help build something to develop spatial skills.

I'm not saying there aren't benefits to video games, it's just that people often times use them as a crutch. Plop the kid down in front of the TV so you can have a little alone time. Which might be fine once in a while, but every time you do it, it gets just a little bit easier to do it the next time, and the time after that. There's certainly an argument to be made for needing a little "me time" to kind of recharge, the trick is to make sure that you don't pop a DVD into the player, or hand the kid a video game any more than you absolutely need to.

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Answer
Best online games for kids
by DanielChuck / December 22, 2011 2:56 PM PST
Hi there,

There are various online games that can help your kid to play and learn at single time.
Some dress up games and match the pictures also helps to improve small kids mind and some mathematical games like addition of pictures help him/her to play and learn at single time.

More games and links on :

http://www.gurumarketing.ca
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Answer
I'd wait til he's like 4+
by talks_44 / December 29, 2011 6:57 AM PST

And then look into getting a leapster or something. I have a friend who gave one to his 3 yr old daughter and it works well. She can play the games on her own, it speaks so it tells her what to do and she's learning quite a bit from it.

But before that, I don't really think it'd be any use, as mentioned.

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