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

Little Discoverers

Little Discoverers

Spring 2014 Website
Ages: 2 - 5 yrs.
Publisher: Sesame Workshop

Promoted as "big fun with science, math and more," Sesame Workshop's Little Discoverers website has so much going on for the youngest of computer users that it's hard to fathom. But, as long as your educational approach includes 2-5 year olds playing and learning at the computer, this site is overflowing with Sesame Street-style videos, interactive games, and activities designed to nudge kids into exploring the world around them.

Although created for preschoolers, the site doesn't shy away from heavy-duty concepts. It uses the acronym STEM to define the educational basis of its content: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math—all of it designed to build an early foundation for kids learning and living with these skills. And, of course, all of the content is age-appropriate and fun.

Starring the Sesame Street Muppets, the website offers 136 games ranging from "Cookie Kart Racing" (build memory and direction-following skills plus how to identify geometric shapes) and "Elmo Musical Prince" (create a musical story) to "The Nick of Rhyme" (recognize words that rhyme) and "Count Me to Sheep" (learn to count with the Count).

There's an entire inventory of Muppet videos that cover all sorts of learning topics, from the Word-of-the-Day to counting to mathematical shapes. In the Playlist video section, Muppets talk to real-life athletes and other celebrities about such things as persistence, practice, healthy habits, etc. There's also a section where kids can click on their favorite Muppet characters to call up all the programs and videos they star in. And the art area features a basic print-and-color program that little tykes will enjoy.

The "Parents" section provides topics to talk about with your child (like going to the doctor and outgrowing diapers), parenting tips, and learning activities all designed to make this more than the kid sitting at the computer alone. Plus, there is a wealth of recorded Sesame Street TV shows and behind-the-scenes visits. And, like most kids' sites now, Little Discoverers is adding access to dozens of mobile apps and games your kids can call up on their smart phones and other digital devices.

Commercial warning: The store on this site does promote and sell all things Sesame Street, from plush Muppets and books to clothing and videogames. Kids do have access to this and can window shop, as it were. Shopping alert noted.

Sesame Workshop Little Discoverers

provides a huge amount of fun and educational content here that kids who love Sesame Street will love. They'll learn a lot, and so will their parents.

Don Oldenburg   ©2014 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.

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