Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Sesame Street: Elmo's A-to-Zoo Adventure

Sesame Street: Elmo's A-to-Zoo Adventure

Spring 2011 Video Games
Ages: 3 - 5 yrs.
Price: $39.99
Gaming System: Nintendo Wii

A tie-in to the children's program, "Sesame Street," this basic-educational videogame targets preschool learners trying to master the alphabet-including letter concepts, rhymes, colors, shapes, phonics and the earliest reading skills. Along the way, kids will learn a few facts about animals and their habitats.

Players join popular Sesame Street characters Elmo and Zoe on a trip to the zoo, where they meet various animals and venture into different zoo environments, such as the Savanna, Jungle, Aquarium, Forest and Arctic. Each zoo areas presents players with a few short, repetitive mini-games-from popping bubbles with letters inside and grabbing letters while riding an elephant to tossing letter-labeled coconuts to monkeys and fanciful matching-letter games. All of the games are super easy and kind of fun, though they unfold so-o-o slowly that even some Sesame Street fans might get annoyed.

Don't expect great graphics because these could've been in a Sesame Street game a decade ago. The game's controls have been simplified for its preschooler audience, but unfortunately the Wii remote plays glitchy and clunky in this game and, at times, it's simply unresponsive. Blame the game, not the system.

The concept of this game is right on the mark for teaching little kids some basic reading skills, but the execution of the game is flawed.

Don Oldenburg   ©2011 Parents' Choice
A former feature writer and consumer columnist at The Washington Post for 22 years, Don Oldenburg is the Director of Publications and Editor of the National Italian American Foundation, in Washington, D.C. He regularly reviews books for USA Today and is the coauthor of "The Washington DC-Baltimore Dog Lovers Companion" (Avalon Travel). The proud father of three sons, he lives with his journalist-author wife, Ann Oldenburg, in McLean, VA.

Look for this product at:
Major, Specialty & Online Retailers
Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

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