The V.Smile TV Learning System is a great way to keep young children (ages 3-7) entertained while teaching them skills that they will need for school. The V.Smile is nothing more than a video game console for children, but all the games are centered around learning things like math, phonics, and problem solving. It connects easily to any television with no other equipment required.
The V.Smile was made very kid-friendly. It has oversized joysticks that accommodate both left- and right-handed users. The console also has a storage compartment that stores 6 games so they won’t get lost.
The game cartridges are cleverly called “smartridges” and are easy for children to load in and out of the machine by themselves so you won’t have to help each time they want to play. Even more genius is the fact that the games feature a wide variety of favorite cartoon characters that children love. Bob the Builder, Dora the Explorer, Scooby Doo, Shrek, and Batman are just some of the characters featured. Each smartridge has 4 or 5 various applications that teach children, so the diversity of each game will keep your child’s interest for quite some time.
The V.Smile gaming unit is reasonably priced at around $50, while the smartridges will run you about $20 each. My biggest complaint is that the company only makes 30 smartridges that I have found. Because some are more gender specific (ie Cinderella may be more suited for girls, while Bob the Builder may be more boy-friendly), it makes the game choices a little limited. However, V-tech has also come up with 2 add-ons to the unit that do provide more expansion. The first is the V.Smile Jammin’ Gym Class that is a smartridge that comes with a soft mat that also connects to the unit and acts like a big joystick that lies on the floor. Kids are encouraged to jump on the mat and get moving! It is a fun way to approach exercise and dance! The second is the V.Smile Art Studio that also connects to the game console and allows children to draw pictures right on the television screen. It has 12 activities in the Art Studio that will teach children to draw various shapes and hone their art skills. It also has a “save” function to enable children to hold onto pictures they draw to show grandma and grandpa on their next visit!
The V.Smile has to be one of the best examples of a toy that can educate and entertain children simultaneously without having to do a lot of convincing. It is reasonably priced, easy to operate, and stimulates your child’s mind-everything you can ask for in a toy!