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Anyone that knows my boys knows that they enjoy video games. Like other kids their age, they can get sucked into them at times and need parental prodding to get off. Thankfully, there are many sites that are fun and educational so I can feel better about giving them screen time.
When asked if our family would be interested in reviewing JumpStart, an online 3D virtual game world, I almost didn’t bother asking the boys first. R and D were excited while P was thinking it would be just for little kids. JumpStart does target 3 to 12 year olds, but some of the features might be appealing to a slightly older child.
All three boys LOVE getting time to spend on JumpStart!
If anything, we have to set timers to make sure they do not spend too much time on it.
For P, the majority of his time is spent doing Math Blaster online. We own an older edition of their PC software which they liked okay. He enjoys the new, online version even more and doesn’t mind that there’s a need for basic math fact calculations to work through the game.
One of R’s favorite areas is newer to the JumpStart world, Enchanted Sanctuary.
P likes this area as well. You get to hatch a dragon egg, train your dragon and ultimately fly them around. Given how much they enjoy fantasy stories, I am not surprised that they would enjoy this area.
D was more than eager to show me around on my own user. That’s a good thing as things become more intuitive for the younger kids than their parents at times. He customizer my ‘avatar’, although I picked my name. After he suggested it, I did like the Science Quizinator section as shown below:
As a parent, I found a few features of JumpStart good.
First off, the children all log in with the same account set up by the parent. So, I can log in as them and see what they’ve been doing. You can have up to 6 kids on one account which is plenty for most families.
Secondly, there is a nifty JumpStart Blog for parents to see what changes are being made to JumpStart as well as learning tips.
They also have worksheets (grouped by subject or grade level) on the main JumpStart site once you are logged into the account. With the need to document our learning for the charter school, this is a great way to demonstrate learning with this program.
JumpStart sells memberships for $7.99 per month, $74.99 for one year, or $149.99 for life. The membership includes JumpStart.com, MathBlaster.com and 4 downloadable games.
Disclosure: I was provided with a JumpStart membership at no cost by Knowledge Adventure in order to test the products’ abilities and give my own personal opinions on it. The opinions I have given are mine and may differ from others but were not influenced by the company or the free product provided.