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

Letter Factory Adventures: The Amazing Alphabet Amusement Park

Letter Factory Adventures: The Amazing Alphabet Amusement Park

Fall 2015 DVD
Ages: 3 - 6 yrs.
DVD Price: $9.99

The Amazing Alphabet Amusement Park is a 39-minute animated adventure that puts the spotlight on alphabet letter identification skills, including distinguishing uppercase letters and lowercase letters. Part of the LeapFrog family of educational products, it stars LeapFrog's well-known young heroes, twins Tad and Lily, along with their puppy Scout, as they set out to save a firefly friend named Edison.

When Edison leads the gang to Alistair Alphabelly's Amazing Amusement Park not only do they find the park closed, but Edison also manages to get stuck at the top of a Ferris wheel. A successful rescue relies on Tad and Lily being able to recognize the letters of the alphabet and use them to turn the rides back on so Edison can return safely to the ground.

Bubbly songs and candy-colored animation keep the story from feeling like a dry lesson as the characters search their surroundings to locate alphabet letters and then grasp the concept of upper case and lower case-although the characters refer to them as "big" and "little" here. Throughout the course of the story, the "big" and "little" letters of the entire alphabet appear on the screen and the characters try to match them to an amusement park ride control panel, providing further opportunity to reinforce the name and shape of each letter. Tad, Lily and Scout also meet rhyme master Alistair Alphabelly, allowing for even more emphasis on the letters, their sounds, and their shapes, as he gives instructions in rhyme.

his DVD offers several special features, including a section with three different sing-along songs; a section focusing on short vowel sounds "e" and "u"; a preview of future LeapFrog products; and an animated music video titled Being A Puppy (The Scout Song). This DVD also includes a Curriculum Commentary for Parents, which begins with an interview with the Literacy Curriculum Designer for LeapFrog, followed by four different segments explaining literacy skills presented through the storyline of The Amazing Alphabet Amusement Park. These segments also include suggestions from the educational expert for extending the learning at home.

Parents who want to blend entertainment with educational content will probably be pleased with this pick, since the focus stays so solidly on letter identification, and at $9.99, it's an economical way to help early readers build confidence and literacy skills.

Gina Catanzarite   ©2015 Parents' Choice
Gina Catanzarite is an award-winning television producer, writer, teacher, mom and media consultant in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She began her career in 1987 and counts 9 Emmy awards, 26 Emmy nominations, a Matrix award, two Pennsylvania Broadcaster's Association Awards, 8 Telly Awards, and a screenwriting grant from the Theatre Association of Pennsylvania, among her professional honors.

Look for this product at:
Leapfrog Enterprises, Inc

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