New toy lets toddlers start “texting,” if not “sexting”
Tuesday, June 16th, 2009
Okay, so this is disturbingly bone-headed: Tomorrow, the edutainment company Leapfrog begins shipping the new “Text & Learn,” a new Blackberry-like toy that lets kids “ages 3 to 6” pretend to text-message:
Text and Learn [says Leapfrog] is designed to let little learners play in a grown-up way! Children can exchange text messages with their puppy pal Scout, check Scout’s planner to see what his week entails and more….
In light of the whole “sexting” panic, doesn’t Leapfrog realize that parents might be wary of a puppy who urges children to text in a “grown-up” way?
And, even if Scout’s intentions are honorable, why is his agenda so full? Do toddlers really need to learn about scheduling conflicts? What sort of parent exposes his child to a Type-A puppy?
But let’s not be silly: If nothing else, toddlers lucky enough to own a “Text & Learn” will soon outstrip their peers when it comes to the important skills of texting when they should be sleeping and creating arcane codes to let each other know you’re in the room.