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Exploring the Alphabet

2011 June 23
by distracted daddy

(Today at Sweetspot, there’s a new post about toddlers biting.)

LeapFrog AlphaPet ExplorerThis is the Alphabet Explorer by Leapfrog. Sorry this is the AlphaPet Explorer by Leapfrog because it has a dog on it, I guess. All of the LeapFrog toys feature this green dog as the voice of the toy, his name is Scout. I’m not sure why Leap Frog has a green dog named Scout as their mascot and not, you know, a green frog. If I take off my glasses and squint slightly, Scout looks like a frog. Sort of.

The AlphaPet Explorer is a phonics learning toy. Despite her use of letters throughout the day, my daughter really has no understanding of the alphabet. This toy is designed to help get her hooked on phonics.

There are 26 “letter biscuits” on the toy and one missing “letter biscuit” outline for the yet-to-be discovered 27th letter of the alphabet. The 27th letter of the alphabet sounds like that noise your pants make when you slide across a leather couch.

The Four Modes to explore on the AlphaPet are:

1) Find the Letters.

The toy says a letter. You have to find it. This is “too complicated for my not quite two-year old daughter” mode.

2) Letter Music.

The Letters make musical sounds. Pressing the paw button plays the alphapet. I mean, alphabet. This is by far, my daughter’s favourite mode. She presses the paw button and sings along with the ABCs. Some of her letters in the middle of the alphabet are unintelligible. But she loves to sing along.

3) Letter Names.

This is confusing because letter names are the letters. So A’s name is A. Isn’t “letter name” redundant? The letter names are followed by a musical sting. One of the musical stings is a rimshot like the kind you’d hear at the end of a lame joke.

“C. Ba dum pssh.”

This should be followed by a crickets sound effect.

4) Letter Sounds.

This is my daughter’s second favourite mode. She loves to hear the sounds of the letters and the accompanying noise.

“E makes the sound eh as in Elephant. (Elephant Noise).”

When we press E my daughter makes an elephant sound and extends her arm like a trunk. E is pressed a lot. I’m not even sure what half of the other letter sounds are because E dominates this mode.

A, B, C, D, other letters, and Z.

There is also a LeapFrog logo at the bottom of the toy. My daughter mistakes this for a button. She keeps pressing the logo and getting disappointed that nothing happens. She’ll press the ‘button’ and say “Daddy, broken.”

B makes the sound buh as in broken.

There’s also a secret 5th mode, it’s called off. Off makes the sound of nothing.




G makes the sound guh as in Giveaway.

To win your very own AlphaPet Explorer from LeapFrog: Leave a comment below with a valid email address. Contest ends midnight EST June 30, 2011. Winner will be chosen at random.

Extra Entries:

Like the Distracted Daddy Facebook Page (mention this in a comment below).

This contest is only open to residents of Canada. FYI, Americans this toy pronounces the letter Z as Zed.

Disclosurey Stuff: The fine folks at LeapFrog sent me an AlphaPet Explorer to review. The opinions expressed in this review are all mine. Okay, maybe partially my wife’s.

19 Responses leave one →
  1. Sarah permalink
    June 23, 2011

    Would love to win one of these for my daughter!

  2. Sarah permalink
    June 23, 2011

    I’m a a FB Distracted Daddy page-liker

  3. June 23, 2011

    So I was thinking just the other day that our house needs at least one more toy that makes a lot of noise. And… coincidentally this would make a pretty awesome 1st birthday present for my son. Which, incidentally is today!

  4. June 23, 2011

    would love to share this cacophony with my 8 month old. who i’m sure will appreciate the alphabet about as much as he appreciates the flashcards that he uses as chew toys ;)

  5. Tabavery permalink
    June 23, 2011

    This sounds like something I’d have fun with!! Oh, and maybe my daughter, too. :)

  6. Tabavery permalink
    June 23, 2011

    I also “Like” Distracted Daddy” on Facebook

  7. Rebecca permalink
    June 24, 2011

    That would be perfect for my daughter!

  8. Joif permalink
    June 24, 2011

    My one year old loves keyboards. I have actually stripped one out of a old laptop for her.
    She would love this!

  9. June 26, 2011

    Love how you review this with both honest AND humor. My niece would love this! I would get it for my daughter, but as she’s a six-month-old fetus currently residing IN me, she might find it difficult to press the buttons just now. ;)

  10. June 26, 2011

    Uh … I meant honesty*

    (Note to self … reread comments before posting…)

  11. June 26, 2011

    Thanks for reviewing this. It would be a great gift for my granddaughter. She’ll be turning one on Wednesday. I wish I could see her more often but it helps to have the webcam.

  12. June 26, 2011

    I have also “Like”d you on Facebook.

  13. Teresa Bayley permalink
    June 27, 2011

    Love your blog. Love the review. Love to win things :)

  14. July 5, 2011

    Thanks for entering everyone. Going to announce the winner shortly. Good luck!

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