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February 10, 2010

Review: Jumpstart

JumpStart CJ Banner
Title: JumpStart

Creator: JumpStart.com

Short Description: JumpStart is an award-winning adventure-based 3D virtual world that is super-personalized, wildly imaginative and really fun, but don't let that fool you - it also teaches math, reading, and critical thinking skills so kids get a real jump start in life.

Review: With the JumpStart program there are two different account options FREE and PAID (membership). For the sake of this review I was given a free membership by JumpStart. Having the membership allows us to access ALL of the gaming features. With the Membership there is actually access to 5 different games. 1 online game and 4 different (CD) games that you download directly unto your computer.

The downloaded games:
Preschool: My First Adventure
Kindergarten: Legend of Grizzly McGuffin
First Grade: Trouble in Town
Second Grade: Quest for the Color Meister

For the sake of this review I only downloaded Quest for the Color Meister. This is because my kids are 7 and 8 and that seemed to be the most appropriate game for them. If I wanted to I could have download all of the games.

With the free version you are given limited access to what worlds you can access within the online game. The membership allows you to have unlimited access to ALL of the online words including Future Land which is designed for kids ages 8-10. Please refer to the Free vs Membership Chart for more details.

For those FACEBOOK people you can even link JumpStart to your Facebook account which according to JumpStart's website will allow you to see what your children are up too and allow you to link to your facebook friends and their kids so that you all can play and compete against each other. (I do not have a facebook account and will not get one  just to test this.)

We LOVE this program! We LOVE both the download game and the online game. Web-princess and Superstar every day ask "Momma can we play JumpStart!?!"  I happily let them because of the "educational" value of the games, especially the downloaded game. This is one fun way to help supplement my children's education. 

Thank-You JumpStart for allowing us the opportunity to play and do this review. I'm really thankful to have this program now because it gives my kids a fun way to reinforce their phonics, math, and reading skills. Not only that but they keep coming back for more and more because they LOVE it!

They love the games and being able to have pets. Web-princess's favorite pet is the brain. It's a little blue brain that follows her where ever she goes. Superstar loves doing the car races. In the car race game he matches up words with the letter sounds he's looking for. The only thing they disliked was that at times the game froze up on them. (This only happen a handful of times and was an easy fix.)

The game freeze has NOT stop them from wanting to play! They still come back for more and more. They just understand that sometimes glitches like that happens, especially when it's an online base game. We have similar issues with other online games.

The online world also has theme based games within the game. These themed games are based on the current seasons/holidays. Currently to celebrate Valentine's Day our kids can collect hidden candy hearts as part of the Valentine's Scavenger Hunt. The kids have enjoyed this and are delighted when they find a new heart. They also enjoy seeing other people online and interacting with them. In a safe way I might add.

On the parental end of things: I like that fact that I could, on the downloaded game, review what games my kids were playing, what skills they worked on, and how well they master those skills. I also like the fact that the online world is a safe environment for them to able to interact with other people.

Despite the game freezing up the program has 6 thumbs way up in this house. 2 thumbs from Superstar, 2 thumbs from Web-princess, and 2 thumbs from Mommy!!! If you are looking for a safe fun games for your kids to do online then JumpStart is the way to go.

Disclosure: I was given a FREE 1 year membership to JumpStart by JumpStart.com  in order to write my honest opinion of this product for this review.

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