Sometimes an excellent operating system can be made even better
Tiny Love DVD MagIQ
- Fun, safe, cute – young children will love it
- Only one of the two possible DVDs is included
Both reasonably priced and educational, DVD MagIQ is an excellent choice for young children
Price$ 99.00 (AUD)
Sitting a three month old baby in front of a TV may not seem like a good idea to many people. But with the hectic lifestyle of the modern working parent, finding time to keep the little ones entertained isn't always easy. If you are going to have your youngster watching TV, then Tiny Love's DVD MagIQ is probably the right way to go. The package contains a DVD for use with your television and an audio CD so you can continue the fun in the car. DVD MagIQ is even replete with its own interactive talking animal. Baby toys just got technical.
DVD MagIQ's basic premise is this. First, you play the included DVD on your TV. The DVD is a 45 minute mix of animation, singing and live footage. Your little animal companion then joins in the fun, chatting and singing along to the characters on screen. Okay, so the idea of a small talking sheep with a bright blue light blazing out of its stomach may seem a little frightening. But once you've spent time with her you'll realise 'Tickle' the lamb is no sinister gremlin, and is actually somewhat endearing. If you don't happen to have a penchant for sheep then you can opt for 'Tiny' the dog or 'Dot' the cow. They're all pretty cute.
Tiny Love have produced two versions of the DVD, each suitable for different age groups. These are 3 to 12 months and 12 to 36 months, though you only get one version in the box. Each contains slightly different material designed to engage the appropriate age group and teach relevant skills. These skills may be recognising different shapes and hand gestures or simply learning how to say "bye-bye". The DVDs have a strong focus on repetition, showing the same situations but with alternate endings. For instance, "guess what's in the box" makes frequent appearances, with baby never sure what will come out. These are the kinds of games that young children love, and an important learning tool for any toddler. Having the animated songs interspersed with live footage of babies playing is a nice feature. Another nice touch is the three main characters: cow, lamb and dog. These characters frequently appear on screen to sing songs and play games and it is here that the cuddly toy joins in. Having the characters both on the television and physically in the room makes DVD MagIQ infinitely more interesting for children.
The cuddly toy is perhaps the most important part of the package. Tickle the lamb and her friends are well made and covered in a soft, plush fabric. You don't need to worry about baby uncovering the electrical wizardry inside either, it's all tucked away neatly and there are no sharp edges. For a battery powered toy it's surprisingly cuddly. One problem is that being full of electrics you cannot wash the toy, the cover isn't removable so you will need to be careful not to get it too dirty.
Using DVD MagIQ is pretty simple. Simply turn on the cuddly toy (it requires three AA batteries) and play the DVD. The toy needs to be near the speakers initially, so it knows when to start joining in. After this the TV program and toy will run without any further input. Using the Audio CD is equally simple, play the CD and the toy will automatically join in the singing. If, as the manufacturers suggest, you wish to use the included audio CD in the car we recommend purchasing some ear plugs. At only 25 minutes long the mindlessly cheerful songs will soon begin to grate. You can also have your cuddly friend talk without using either the DVD or CD, but after 'Tickle' has sung about her bellybutton for the twentieth time you may find yourself reaching for the off switch. Overall though, DVD MagIQ is an interesting and well thought out product for young children. The DVD is captivating whilst still containing some educational benefit and children won't tire of having it repeated (we can't give a similar guarantee for parents though!). The extra interaction provided by the cuddly toy isn't just a gimmick and will enhance the lifetime of the product to no end. Thumbs up.
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