This is a very useful piece of baby equipment for a limited period of time. It is a large round activity station which you can put your baby in once they are able to hold themselves upright. It has a number of simple activities on top to entertain the baby and the seat swivels 360 degrees within the frame to enable you or your baby to move the position between activities. The activities include a microphone which plays music when moved (this was my daughters favourite section), a musical book with pages to turn, a large keyboard and a shiny ball which spins when the seat spins. The seat height can be adjusted (3 different positions) as the baby grows. The unit does not have wheels which is both an advantage and a disadvantage. It does mean that this is a safe place to put your child - they cannot manoeuvre it away from where you leave it. But it is also more frustrating for an older baby. We kept ours in the kitchen to keep the baby safe and occupied while cooking and it was very useful for this purpose but the length of time that you can use this item for is limited. The baby needs to be strong enough to hold itself stable before using and by the time he is walking finds it too frustrating to be static for long. The other disadvantage is its size. This is a very bulky item and quite heavy to carry if you want to move it between rooms.
When my son reached six months old, I wanted a safe place I could put him for 20-30 minutes at a time, so I could get on with housework. I did lots of research and decided to go for the Leapfrog Learn and Groove Activity station. I paid £69 from Amazon.co.uk, which made it mid-range as far as prices went.
It required self assembling, which was relatively easy, although the instructions were not overly clear. The fabric seat (which is washable) had to be attached with poppers, and these were unbelievably stiff, which I suppose they have to be for safety, but it was very frustrating to remove and reattach for washing. It requires 3 AA batteries, which were included in the packaging.
The seat spins 360 degrees, and there are three different height settings to grow with your baby. There are five toys, three of which have to be assembled. The Jukebox changes the play mode from learning to music. Each toy when pulled or tapped plays a different sound or activity. The frustrating thing is that all the sound comes from the same place. It would be better if each toy had a speaker in. The recommended age is from four months (or when your baby can sit alone) to when your baby can walk unattended.
On putting my baby in the seat for the first time, he was very excited to spin around and enjoyed playing on the piano, which lights up on each touch. At 6 months he did struggle a bit to pull the lever of the record player, but quickly picked this up. He loved the microphone, which doubled up as a teether! The sounds are very loud and get extremely annoying after a while, though there are 2 volume settings. Another negative is that after a couple of months my son started to get quite bored as it doesn't really do a great deal. I attached some different toys and buggy books onto it using clip-rings and this kept him more amused.
The unit is quite big and bulky, but it does fold up and store quite flat, which would be useful if you don't have space to have it up all the time. There is also a carry handle, which is great if you want to take it to the grandparents for the day! It's not overly heavy either.
I've left the BIG negative until last. At 10.5 months, my son was still a good few months off walking unattended, and was average size for his age. One afternoon he was playing in it, and dropped a book, leaned forward to get it and fell straight out. Luckily we were sitting close by and my husband grabbed him when he was just inches from the floor. He was nowhere near the max age/ability/height for it, and he shouldn't have been able to fall out so easily. Had I been washing up, and not right next to him, there would have been a very serious accident. I rang Leapfrog, and they responded that he must be big for his age and must be able to walk unattended. They could have improved the design by attaching a harness, which would give parents peace of mind. We bought some reins from Mothercare, and attached them to the seat which kept him safe for the next couple of months. By this time, he was bored of it and would scream and cry whenever he was put anywhere near it.
I bought this for my first son when he was 4 months old as he was outgrowing his baby bouncer. I wanted something that was safe, entertaining and that would encourage him to sit upright. From the moment we put him in it, he loved it. There are 3 height levels, so even at that young age he was able to sit in the seat with his feet touching the ground, enabling him to be comfortable and move around. Its very sturdy and not once did it ever topple over, even when my son would lean right forward, as this was a worry that I had before buying. The seat swivels and baby can move around a full 360 degrees as well as using it to bounce up and down in. The seat also comes off the toy meaning that it can be machine washed if there's any little accidents. There are 5 activities in total, a numbered keyboard, a DJ CD, a storybook, a spinning disco ball and a chewable microphone. All of these play music when pressed and the keyboard lights up. It really encourages them to press buttons and very quickly he was able to understand that by pressing the toys, something would happen. He was always in his activity centre, and it came in very handy keeping him entertained when we had to make dinner. He'd sit in it and watch everything that was going on, and we'd drag it around the house with us to enable him to sit in it when we had other things to do. He was actually upset when he was too big for it, but it defiantly fills the gap, between the rolling and walking stage. We loved this so much we bought another one for my second son, who loved it just as much as his brother. Overall this toy is a must, it gives them their own piece of independence and my two played on this much more than any of their other toys. Its worth knowing that it will only last a short time (ours managed to use this from 4 months until 9 months) but that's the same as with all baby toys. Its expensive but defiantly worth the price.
We recently purchased one of these for our little boy who is 4.5 months old. We also have a 3 year old daughter.
The item itself is quite large, an estimated 75cm in diameter and variable heights. It has a padded material seat in the centre with 5 activities around the outside for your childs entertainment.
The first of these is a 'record player' which you pull the needle across and the disc spins, it also has a little box and a 'level adapter' lever which clicks when you move it.
The next one is 5 buttons which go from small to large and have the numbers 1-5 on them. When pressed they say the number first and then the second time it is pressed it says the colour of that particular button.
Then there is a microphone on a lever which swivels and bends (great for teething babies), swiftly followed by a mirrored disco ball on a stick which entertains my son for ages.
Finally there is a book which has a flip page. This changes the mode of the toy, from music to learning and back again (or so I can figure out anyways).
The colours used to decorate this toy are such that it is suitable for either a boy or girl. Mainly white in colour with a blue base, green legs and primary colours on the toys themselves.
Overall the product is well made, and there is nothing that can hurt my son on it, which is great. The height is easily adjusted by pushing in a little button on each leg and moving it up/down a level.
The product also rocks from side to side, which I much prefer to one on wheels as it means that when I position the toy somewhere, it will invariably stay there. For a while anyway.
My 3 year old daughter is also obsessed with this product and often begs me to put our son in his 'spinny seat' so she can play with him without our interference.
I would recommend this product to anyone who wants their child to be in a safe environment for some independant play.
We aquired this product by accident and I'm glad we did. Our daughter was 5 months old and at the stage where she constantly wanted to be upright. Unfortunately our house isn't a very suitable lay out for the traditional baby walker and so I was looking for an alternative. I intially intended to get the fisherprice jumperoo after hearing good things about it from friends. My partner was going into town that day and after showing him the picture of said jumperoo off he went. Well I'm sure you can guess the rest. This is what he came home with. Purchased from mothercare at a price of £64.99 (it had £20 off, usually retails in there for £84.99). Not wanting to hurt his feelings and willing to give it a try we set it up. Very easy to do and took me about 3 minutes. From her first go in it, at 5 months 1 week, she has absolutely loved it. The various activites and noises are excellent. As she is teething at the moment she gets great relief from sucking on the microphone! She can happily play in it for 20-30 minutes while I get on with other things and it's great knowing that's she happy and safe. Her three year old brother loves it aswell as he can play with her, turning the pages and using the record player to make her laugh. The height adjustments are brilliant, allowing the station to grow with her. It's totally wipe clean aswell which as we all know is a god send with teething babies! I noticed within a couple of weeks of her using it how the strength in her legs had increased and she's really getting the hang of bouncing up and down and spinning around to reach the toy she wants. Downsides? Hearing 'sing it baby' 30 times over! The station folds down and has a handle for easy transportation although is quite bulky.
We bought this toy for Freddy when he was four months old but he really didn't start to get the most from it until last month, when he was eight months. We'd originally bought this because Freddy had got to the stage where he wanted to be sat up observing the world and we were looking for alternatives to his Bumbo or our arms. Knowing that we definitely didn't want to get a baby walker (due to the inherent danger), when we say the Leapfrog Learn And Groove Activity Station seemed ideal seeing as it was not only stationary but also suitable for babies from four months of age.
Costing us £63.95 with free delivery the Activity Station arrived in a fairly large box and required some assembly. The enclosed instruction leaflet was fairly clear but it still took me a good half hour to fully assemble it, with the legs being quite difficult to position. The moral here, is that if this is intended as a present then I would suggest assembling it the night before the special occasion. The activity station also requires three AA batteries and these are not supplied (not even a demonstration set) and a small cross-head screwdriver is needed to access the battery compartment.
==The Activity Station - A Mum's View==
The first thing that really grabs your attention about this toy, is just how large it is. With a diameter of approximately 70cm (just over 2ft), this does take up a lot of floor space and although it can be folded down to an extent if space is at a premium then possibly this toy is not for your child. The activity station itself is formed from a curved base with three height adjustable legs running up to the seat and activity section. The seat is lightly padded and made of a easy to clean nylon-like material, with the back being slightly higher than the front. In theory it should be easy to tell which way round to put baby in the seat, but there has been a couple of times that Daddy has put Freddy in the wrong way round, much to Mummy's amusement. Personally, I do sometimes find it quite difficult to get Freddy's chubby legs through the relevant holes, especially when he gets all excited.
Once Freddy is in the seat he's not really all that well supported, of course this isn't a problem now he's nine months and perfectly capable of supporting himself. But at four months old, Freddy tended to simply fall forwards, which severely limited both the time he could spend in the station and his ability to access the different activities. The legs can be adjusted to three different heights (and this is surprisingly easy to do), with the lowest being perfect for a rather tall four month old (his feet just touched the base). We now have the Station adjusted to the tallest setting and Freddy can stand in the seat with his feet touching the base so that he can both bounce and reach all the activities.
Although we always have the base set so that Freddy can rock and bounce, there are feet that can be used to set the base to a fixed position. Personally I would never do this, because Freddy absolutely adores bouncing in this and all his jumping is seriously strengthening his legs. There's one other aspect of the base that could possibly cause a problem for those with expensive carpets, and that's the fact that this leaves a very pretty star shaped indent.
As well as being a great, safe place for Freddy to bounce, the Activity Station also has a number of activities, the majority of which make a lot of noise. There are a total of five stations each of which features a different music based activity, but you'll be glad to know there is a choice of two volumes, annoying and even more annoying. Only joking, but even the lowest setting is loud enough to be heard over the television and after half hour or so of 'high' and 'low' you will start to think you're going crazy. While the on/off switch, volume control and battery compartment are all out of baby's reach, they are also quite difficult to access as you need to turn the Activity Station upside down to change the batteries. Talking of batteries, so far we've used three sets over the last five months, but it's only been extensively used in the last month and with several hours use a day, a set of decent (Duracell) batteries last just over two weeks.
==The Activity Station - A Baby's View==
As I said at the beginning, Freddy was four months old when we bought this, and just so you know he was fully able to support his own head. After assembling the Station, setting the legs to the lowest height and installing the batteries, I put him in for his first play. And to be honest, he wasn't all that impressed. The first problem was that while the seat would have supported him if he had been leaning back, it didn't provide any support to stop him leaning too far forward (and remember that he needed to lean forward to play with the activities). This meant that he looked very uncomfortable in the toy, which meant that it didn't take long for him to want to get out again. While he was in the seat he seemed more interested in the raised patterns than the actual activities, which was really a shame.
Not one to give up, I tried him in this many, many times over the next few months and he gradually started to interact with some of the activities. The first activity that caught his eye was the mirrored disco globe, well Freddy has always loved mirrors anyway. To begin with Freddy would just look at the light reflecting off of the mirrors, then he started to try and eat it, which was when he discovered that if he pressed on it, then the music would start. Well not music so much as an extremely repetitive "High, Low, Up, Down", believe me this gets highly annoying after ten minutes, but Freddy loved that it was him making the noise, even though he couldn't quite work out how.
Up until the last month, we would have to turn the seat to help Freddy access all the different activities, but now he can easy spin round to whichever toy he wants to play with and as he spins the seat the mirror ball spins too. As with the rocking base, the seat can be fixed into position, but again, why would you do this? The next activity that Freddy was able to access was the numbered keyboard. There are a total of five keys, each of which is a different colour and flashes when pressed. Freddy had little trouble pressing them as they are very sensitive and they produce a variety of different sounds depending on which mode the station is in. In number mode, the number that's been pressed is announced and counted up to, while in music mode each key plays a snippet of a different musical style. And which mode the Station is in totally depends on Freddy and whether he's been playing with another of the activities (although if listening to the word Samba for the hundredth time has totally driven me up the wall I can intervene and change the mode). I must admit though, that to begin with Freddy actually thought that bouncing up and down was what made the keyboard work and it was so funny watching him bounce and then look at the lights, not realising that it was actually his hand that made them flash.
To be honest, Freddy found accessing the other activities a bit frustrating up until last month, so from here on in I'm going to tell you about how he played with this today. In the last month, but especially in the last week this has actually become one of Freddy's favourite toys, easily surpassing most of his Christmas presents. Probably this is just because he's got to that age where babies want to be more upright and he's simply too lazy to crawl, but there again it maybe because he now finds the activities so much fun. What ever the answer is, this is a toy he'll make a bee-line for several times a day and then shout until we place him in it.
As soon as he's in the seat he'll start bouncing, and even though he bounces very vigorously the Station hasn't once shown a sign of toppling. And the grin on his face while bouncing says it all really, he loves to bounce and he'll often bounce for a few minutes and then look at me and wait for me to say 'bouncy, bouncy' before starting to bounce again. Once he's had a good bounce, he'll start playing with the different activities, regularly pausing to have another bounce. He now finds it very easy to spin himself round to each of the activities and while he will have a play at all of them, he definitely has his favourites. One of these favourites is the large blue and yellow microphone. This microphone is attached to the base via a ball joint, meaning that Freddy can easily pull it towards himself to have a chew on the rubber section. It also makes a 'Do-whop' noise as it's pulled and pushed around, which always brings another grin of triumph to Freddy's face. I must admit, I do sometimes worry that it's going to spring back into Freddy's face when he's being a bit rough with it, but so far so good.
Another of the activities is a turntable, which is a little surprising as there aren't that many record players about now are there? Anyhow, the turntable features a 'needle' that Freddy finds easy to push backwards and forwards and as he does different songs are played. Freddy loves 'scratching' and when he plays with this activity, it's rare that a whole tune will be played. There's also a little hidey hole in this section and Freddy really enjoys opening the lid and letting it slam shut. Although he's not done it yet, there is the possibility that he could trap (and hurt) his finger in this.
The final activity is a jukebox with a turnable page. As well as being an activity in it's own right, this is also the speaker. Freddy can spend a good ten minutes moving the page from side to side, which not only changes the Activity Station's mode but also produces yet more music. I especially like singing along to the 'ABC' song with him, and he must enjoy it too as this is his favourite mode. To be honest, he's not actually all that interested in either the keyboard or mirror ball now, he will play with them, but only for very short periods of time, especially when compared with the other activities.
Although we try and limit Freddy's time in the Activity Station, it is a toy that he loves spending time in and he will shout when we take him out, even after an hour. I think if he had his own way, Freddy would only come out of the station to eat, sleep and have cuddles, which shows how much he loves it. Generally he will spend between three and four hours in it a day (over five or six periods) and if he's not in it then he'll be shouting to be put in. That's not to say we use it as a babysitter, we spend most of that time talking to him, interacting with him, saying 'bouncy, bouncy', singing along and blowing kisses. (Freddy just started blowing kisses while playing in this today).
==Learning Through Play==
Although a baby will learn through play no matter what toys they have, I do like to buy Freddy toys that go a little further towards aiding his development and the Leapfrog Learn And Groove Activity Station has definitely done that. Even in the last month I've watched Freddy learn new skills and improve on those he's already learnt. Starting with his gross motors skills, which are the most obvious and the one's where I've seen the biggest improvement in the last few weeks. Although Freddy has excellent fine motors skills, he is a little delayed in as far as his gross motor skills (sitting, crawling etc). But since he's started going in this Activity Station regularly, I've noticed a vast improvement in this, all the bouncing has really strengthened his back and leg muscles, so much so that he's now trying to pull himself to standing.
As well as helping improve gross motor skills the different activities, sounds and flashing lights encourage baby to develop their fine motor skills. As these emerging skills are rewarded by songs and flashing lights, so baby is encouraged to practise hitting buttons, pulling levers and turning pages. I've certainly, once more, noticed that Freddy's hand eye coordination has steadily improved while playing in this. What I wouldn't say is that this helps with teaching baby numbers or letters, simply because baby is far too young to be able to understand either concept.
All in all, the Activity Station is made of durable plastic which is easy to clean and has easily withstood all of Freddy's rather rough play. Freddy isn't a small baby (75th percentile) and he bounces in this with as much force as he can muster without is showing any sign of wear and tear. He has occasionally been sick on it, and that was easy to clean up, and even with rather extensive use over the last month this still looks as good as new. The seat is also machine washable, which came as quite a surprise to me and it's not that difficult to remove either. I would imagine that, if I were to sell this on I would still be able to get a very good price for it (in fact they seem to be selling for between £30 and £40 second hand on eBay).
Up until a month ago, I would have said that this was one of those purchases that I regretted. Although it's said to be suitable from four months, personally I don't feel it's really the best of toys for such a young baby as it simply doesn't support them well enough for them to be able to access the activities. But as things stand right now, I would say that although expensive it's one of the best toys that we've bought and one that Freddy adores. Yes, the different sounds do become very repetitive and annoying for any adults within earshot, but then that's balanced with the look on Freddy's face when he makes it make those noises. Then there's the relatively short life-span, I would say that it's most suitable for babies six months and over and for safety reasons it's then only suitable until they can walk independently. But again, they have so much fun during those few months, and it's so durable that it can be kept for another baby or sold on. So the question is am I recommending the Leapfrog Learn and Groove Activity Station? And the answer is a resounding yes, although maybe not if you have limited space, and not until your baby is six months. And so I'm giving the Leapfrog Learn and Groove Activity Station a very healthy four stars out of five, with it losing that star because I'm not sure the suggested age range is entirely accurate.
I was lucky enough to be given the Leapfrog Learn and Groove by a friend when my son was 4 months old. My friend had bought it for her little boy from Argos for £84.99 and when she gave it to me it was still in excellent condition after 2 years.
My son loved standing/sitting in this and he went in it for short periods each day from being 4 months up until he was walking.
The activity station is round and it has different things all the way round which are designed to help babies develop motor skills and helps them to learn the alphabet, colours, numbers 1-5 and more. The seat rotates all the way round so that baby can get to all activities.
The activity station has music and lights that are activated with every movement that baby makes which provides endless fun for your little one.
What I liked most about this product was that it was height adjustable so as my little boy grew it could grow with him. It is adjustable to 3 different heights.
It is very easy to clean and the seat is wipe clean material and also machine washable.
I also liked that it folds down flat so it was easy to store behind the sofa when not in use and was also easy to put in the car and take it to grandma's house when visiting. It has a handle on it too to make it easier for carrying about and is nice and light.
The activity station uses batteries.
Now that my son has outgrown this, I have given it back to the same friend that gave it to me for her little girl who is now 4 months old. It is still in great condition and it is 4 years old.
You can buy the Learn & Groove from Argos and Mothercare for £84.99, Amazon for £52.99 and ToysRus £72.99.
The price may seem a lot of money but I think that it is money well spent. I would definately recommend this to anybody.
I love baby products like this. The Learn and Grow activity station was one of the best purchases I made for my daughter, she loves it to pieces, and you cant say that about every baby toy. Basically, this a chair which you place your baby in, and it has a soft cushion seat so that they will be comfortable. I often find that will similar products, a baby tends to fidget a lot because they find is uncomfortable to sit.
One of the best features I have found regarding the activity station is that fact that it spins around doing a full circle, something which Jade found particularly funny. When I put her in it, the first thing that she does is spin around, then she gets bored and starts playing the the toys on it. It found it to be very safe and when my daughter was using it, she was quite small, so I didn't have any worry about her leaning over and tipping it over, which after reading some others reviews tends to be a problem for some parents.
I like toys that help a childs development, and with the activity station, and it being multi coloured, the baby can can accustomed to a range of colours. I place this station where ever I am in the house, it isn't really that big, and would certainly recommend it to future or current parents.
Bought this for my son and he absolutely loved it. There is 5 different activities in it, which kept him occupied for hours on end. The height can be adjusted so that when your child grows you can simply increase the height so that your child can still have plenty room to move their feet around. The chair rotates 360 degrees which I particularly liked as when I was doing some housework my son could always see where I was as he could simply turn around in the seat. The activity station has got small clips at the bottom which help keep it steady but when your child leans forward I though it seemed a bit unstable as it tilted slightly. At first it seems a bit expensive but it is well worth the money as even when he out grew the seat he would still walk around playing with it. Eventually we gave it to one of my friends who had a child and they got plenty more use out of it as her daughter adored it as well but she also thought it was a bit unstable when her daughter leaned forward.
In preparation for our four month year old daughter being able to play more actively, we managed to get a Leapfrog Learn & Groove Activity Station on eBay for a bargain £20. We had found them on a few sites for anything up to £80 and had seen a video review on Kiddicare.com, which made the product very appealing.
The unit itself has a central seating area which can swivel in a circle in order for your child to be able to play with the different musical themed elements. There is a microphone which 'sings' when bent over, a collection of 5 coloured buttons which light up and play a tune when anyone of them is pressed, a fake sheet music stand which makes a noise when you turn the plastic page, a DJ style mixing deck which plays a tune when the turn table is activated and finally a silver ball which spins when the centre seat is spun.
The music is very catchy but I can imagine it will get quite annoying after a while. There are feet which can be deployed for stability, or if left in, allow for the activity station to rock gently.
There is also a couple of height adjustments which are usefulmfor when your baby grows. It should be noted though that your child should only go in the station when their feet are flat on the base.
We're hoping our daughter likes the Learn & Groove Activity Station. She has only had one or two quick goes but seemed to enjoy it when in it.
This is a great toy for baby and mum!
It is essentially a large plastic circle which toys are attached to. There is a large set of fabric pants filling the circle to support your baby. This middle piece moves through a full 360 degrees to allow your baby to play with each of the toys - there are large number keys to press, a disco ball, microphone and a djs record player which all have sounds attached and music to play to keep baby amused by tapping or spinning. There are two modes for sounds; either music or alphabet & numbers are sounded out by pressing the buttons or pulling the microphone so very educational.
Your baby is well supported and safe, they can amuse themselves or impress you with their djs skills. The best thing is your baby can learn to use their legs and to have the floor underneath their feet. My little one also enjoys having a new view point to look at you from.
You can use the groove station as soon as your baby can hold their head up by themselves. It is easy to clean and the fabric pants can be removed for machine washing. The legs can be adjusted for when baby gets taller. It folds down for easier storage although it's still quite large and wouldn't fit under your couch or anything. Although there is a 'carry handle' I wouldn't be taking it with me when we go visiting friends or family, its a heavy piece of kit.
There is an off switch and a low volume setting too.
All in al this is a great activity station which is educational and physically challenging for a little one.
This product is AMAZING!!!!!!
It is an activity station that once your baby can hold their own head up unaided, you sit them in and they can play to their hearts content, and you know that they are are safe and free from harm. It utilises sounds and music with lights, and also movement as the station can rock a little from side to side.
You sit the child in the centre and there are different things to press that light up and play noises or music, such as a disco ball that spins when the baby pushes it and piano keys that light up to the music. It helps them learn the beat and also helps with counting and the alphabet, as the centre plays these when certain buttons are activated.
It folds completely flat for transportation, and has three levels for you to adjust the height to, so that it can grow with your baby.
Although this product is quite expensive new, they can be found on auction sites at a fraction of the cost.
In my opinion, they are well worth the money, even if you have to buy them new as the skills that they teach your baby are invaluable.
The nursery that I was working in was donated a Leapfrog Learn and Groove Activity station which was much loved by all of the babies but somewhat of a nightmare for all of the adults.
It is basically a toy that enables babies from four months old to walking up to 25 pounds to be able to stand with the support of the the fabric seat that helps to keep the baby in the correct standing position. The station has three different height adjustments that enables the station to 'grow' with the child. This means that the station will last a long time. The fabric can be removed to be machiene washed, this is an easy task which cannot be said for the actual station itself. some of the parts are hard to reach and it is quite difficult to clean. The seat also turns 360 degrees so that the baby can access all of the functions.
The whole station bounces up and down with the babies movements, this is good as it helps to get the babies using their legs. There is a slight problem though, although the station is well weighted, babies sometimes do get over excied and it does tip slightly. Also if you have older children who want to play with the staion but are too big to sit in it may pull on it too much and tip it. Although it has never tipped fully, I would suggest that you never leave your baby unattended in this.
The station has two ways of being used which the book on the top of the station controls. This is done by the baby flipping the pages to swap modes. The first mode is 'learning activities' which consists of activies such as numbers, names of colours, the alphabet and much more. The large push and pull butons help to develop hand-eye-co-ordination and are great for any age.
The second mode is music mode. This is where babies can let their musical genuis flair! The keyboard can be pressed to make sounds as well as making phrases by pulling on the microphone. Turning the disco ball (which turns when the baby turns) makes funny noises and the DJ record scrater starts the songs and 'scratches' them. I find that babies move most when in this mode as they bop to the music.
The station can be folded flat for 'easy travel' but I do find that it is extremely heavy and would not be taking it anywhere where I had to carry it for a long time.
The recommended age is 4 months to walking but I would say that if your child can climb or pull themselves up then I would not put them in this unless supervised. This is becasue it is very easy for babies to climb out of (and I have also caught babies climbing into it) which is obviously dangerous.
The last negative point to the station is that the songs and phases are very repetative and they do get extremely annoying and stick in your head for a very long time so the quiet setting may be appeciated by many. The voices used are high and grain on you.
Overall an okay product as long as babies are well supervised around and in it.
Like most of the toys and accessories I bought for my son, the idea came from a friend. When visiting her, she showed me the Leapfrog Learn and Groove Activity Station and said how thrilled she was with it. Now, when I was pregnant, I was insistent that everything would be brand new - as I suspect most people are with their first child given the choice. However, 3 months in and I realised that plastic toys like these would be much better bought 2nd hand - you can thoroughly clean them and it costs you ½ the price.
They were going for about £30 on ebay so I won one at auction and was really pleased with it. My son already had a bumbo seat so could sit supported but he could actually stand (well sort of) in the activity station. It was a godsend because I could plonk it in the kitchen or wherever I was and it would keep him amused for ages with all the different activities...
*A record player where your baby can be D.J! They pull the handle down for lots of different songs
*A keyboard numbered 1-5 to help with numbers and colours
*A disco ball that spins as they do in the seat
*A microphone that acts as a teether as well
*If you turn the page of the jukebox, it transforms all the other activities into learning or music.
*Keeps baby entertained while you get on with your jobs (although it's not advisable to keep them in there too long)
*Has a good 2nd hand resale value - I sold mine for pretty much what I paid 2nd hand.
*There are 3 height adjustments to grow as your baby does.
*The seat is easily removed for washing.
*It's not too battery hungry
*It is quite a bulky item so you will need a fair amount of space but it does fold up.
*There is a common fault that the microphone stops working. They can be replaced from Leapfrog but will cost £10.
*The sounds can get a bit irritating to adults when pressed constantly! But that's the same with all noisy toys I guess!!
I would thoroughly recommend the activity station. It was great to keep my son occupied and I think he felt good about being able to stand up supported. They are suitable from about 4 months or when they can properly hold their head up until 12 months or when they can climb out of it!
I purchased this product for my son at Christmas, he was four months at that point, which is a suitable age provided the child can hold his/her own head up. Although he could hold himself up quite well, he would constantly use his arms to hold his body upright as the seat is quite big to accommodate them as they get bigger. I just rolled up a baby blanket and popped it in front of him to help him stay upright while he bashed the buttons. He is now able to play with several parts of the toy and particularly loves the light up buttons and silver disco ball. He is still unable to manoeuvre around in a circle and I have to move him around to play with the other side. The amount of use your child could get out of this toy is dependant upon his/her age but I would say is a good toy to grow with them as they develop. The item also is height adjustable which is great for if you are worried about them weight baring before they are 6 months old. I would recommend this product.