Scott’s Toy Box: Tech Time
I got my first computer in the 9th grade. Though my parents had originally intended it to be a Christmas gift, it arrived before Thanksgiving via UPS while I happened to be the only one home. My parents generously decided against a month of torture, and decided to let me have it then because I had been talking about and asking for a computer for such a long time. So as you can tell, technology is something I’ve always enjoyed and appreciated. This month in the toy box, I bring you three great tech toys small enough to hide from your kids until you are ready to give it to them.
First up, we have the FunTab mini. The FunTab mini is a kid friendly tablet the size of a cell phone. It has two
different modes- one for parents and one for kids. Parent Mode allows you to oversee what is available in Kid Mode. Parents can install, enable and disable apps, record storybooks, and set up safe sites for kids to visit. In Kid Mode, kids can play games, create art and listen to storybooks. The FunTab mini comes with great games like Cut the Rope, Angry Birds, and Where’s my Water? already pre-installed on the device. This great device is available for $70 on Amazon.
Next is the game Animal Crossing New Leaf, for the Nintendo 3DS. Animal Crossing is a real time game where you can create your own town. As soon as you “step off the train,” the animals in your town make you mayor. Every day, kids can login to keep up with the citizens of town and do favors for them. The game keeps time with the player’s real life time. The game has no main objective, so kids can’t “win,” but rather the goal is to keep the town running well. Kids can also visit friends’ towns and vice versa. Animal Crossing New Leaf costs $35 on Amazon.
Finally, we have the program Lego Digital Designer. Growing up, LEGOs were a favorite hobby of mine and I
have recently gotten back into them with the Creator sets. (I love buildings.) As I combed the LEGO website, I came across the Digital Designer, a program kids can download onto the computer and create their own designs using an infinite number of LEGO bricks. When you open it, a blank canvas appears. From here, kids can choose from a categorized list of bricks to build a 3D digital model. The best part of LEGO Digital Designer is that it’s FREE! All you have to do is head to LEGO.com and click on Create and Share, where you can find the download link.
M. Scott Anderson lives in Jackson. He doesn’t want to be greedy, but he could use a new room for all his LEGOs.