Common Sense Review
Updated October 2012

LeapFrog Explorer Learning Game: Letter Factory

Turn kids into letter-writing and sounding-out machines
Common Sense Rating 4
Teacher Rating (1 Teacher Review) 4
  • Kids will find all of the letters that match the one in the box.
  • What picture starts with the same sound as the letter in the box?
  • Burfder learns the letter "O."
  • Learn about all 26 letters in lower- and uppercase
Pros
Plenty of silly interactive spots to explore and a full exploration of each letter (recognition, sound, writing)
Cons
Doesn't offer a great variety of games.
Bottom Line
It's a playful way to help reinforce and even introduce letter recognition, writing, and sounds.
Christy Matte
Common Sense Reviewer
Common Sense Rating 4
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 3

The games are fun for kids, especially those for whom reading is just starting to "click," but with only three main activities, it's not quite as sticky as it could be.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer? 4

The learning activities work well for teaching letters, their sounds, and how to write them. The game makes good use of the touchscreen to draw letters.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students? 5

Help is always available, and parents can track their child's progress in the LeapFrog Learning Path online. They can also find activities, worksheets, and games on the LeapFrog website.

About our ratings and privacy evaluation.
How Can Teachers Use It?

Early in the year, kids can use the game to start to learn the letters, while later in the year, they can use it to reinforce things they've already learned. This is a nice tool for kids who are struggling with the concepts and those with learning challenges. The game can be used at a digital station or individually.

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What's It Like?

LeapFrog Explorer Learning Game: Letter Factory introduces kids to letter shapes, sounds, and word formation by offering a set of three games. In one, kids click on all the letters that match the one they're shown. As the difficulty increases, it includes upper- and lowercase letters. Another game asks kids to draw (trace) the letter. And other games have kids identifying sounds from a word (either by choosing the picture of the word that has the sound or by finding a missing letter for a word). Over time, kids unlock all 26 letters and teach Burfder, a shape-shifting purple blob, about the letters as well. In between these games, kids find plenty of interactive spots throughout the Letter Factory that are fun to explore.

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Is It Good For Learning?

This is a fun way for kids to solidify their understanding of letters, their sounds, and how they're written. The game is upbeat and offers plenty of positive reinforcement. Unlike some other LeapFrog titles that have deeper story lines, this is better suited for short bursts of play or targeted practice on a particular letter. It's important to remember that LeapFrog games use the age/skill level of the profile on the device to provide content. Make sure that if kids are sharing profiles, they aren't playing at too advanced a level. It can be confusing and frustrating, especially when it comes to mingling upper- and lowercase letters.

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See how teachers are using LeapFrog Explorer Learning Game: Letter Factory