Product Type: Hasbro board games
Newest Review: ... instantly stops what she is doing and comes over to play. While she doesn't necessarily play (more like 'help' mum), I like that it is tea... more
A good fun game for children
Mattel Scrabble Junior Toy Story
Member Name: carlz2001uk
Mattel Scrabble Junior Toy Story
Advantages: Good fun, educational, Toy Story characters
Disadvantages: Words such as Lotso used on easier play mode
Eager to find some educational yet fun and exciting games for my young children, I came across the Junior Scrabble games. I couldn't decide which would be better suited for both children (aged 4 and 6) and so decided to get both the Scrabble Junior board game (Toy Story edition) and the Scrabble Junior Floor Puzzle. The games are fairly different, and while the Scrabble Junior Floor Puzzle is much more suited to my younger child, the Toy Story Junior Scrabble is perfect for my eldest daughter who is currently in year 1 at school. My 6 year old can pretty much read and so we are trying to help her along with her spelling, thinking about how you can create words and how similar they can be. This game is perfect for it.
While it is much more suitable for my eldest daughter, the younger one who loves Toy Story, loves it when we get this game out. She instantly stops what she is doing and comes over to play. While she doesn't necessarily play (more like 'help' mum), I like that it is teaching her about different sounds and what letters look like. She has literally only just gone 4 so is still practicing tracing over her name at nursery etc., but she has started (with a little help from this game) to say 'mummy, that's an a which is for apple'. She loves to look at the box and the board which are covered in Toy Story characters and this definitely draws the children in to a game which some adults find boring (not me! I love Scrabble!), let alone children. It definitely doesn't feel like they are learning, which of course they are.
The game can be played in two ways, with two sides to the board. One is a free play much like the adult version, while the reverse side has printed words connected over the board with a few letters missing in each word. There are short letters and fairly long ones giving it a bit of variety as they become more confident. In this game, we don't add tiles up to get a score, but if a player is able to make up one of the words on the board, they get a blue cardboard counter. The winner at the end is the player with the most counters, although to be honest I don't do it this way, I just make a big thing about how many each player has got and don't compare it with each of them (they haven't cottoned on to this just yet!). My one little niggle with this game is the words which are used. While I appreciate that it is teaching them how to make up words, words like Lotso aren't exactly an everyday word (although perhaps it may be for my 4 year old!).
The alternate game for older children is much like traditional Scrabble but without the scores on each letter. Players gain 1 point for each letter they use, with bonus scoring available through the blue and red dots on the board which increase scores by an extra 2 or 3 points dependant on if it is a blue or red circle. We have tried this game a few times with our eldest daughter and she has taken to it well. We start off with a long but not overly complex word, giving her more of an opportunity to create words by using the available letters. Although she tends to spell fairly simple and relatively short words, she has on occasion tried to spell more complicated words if she feels able. This is a good opportunity to help with spelling and while we let her get away with putting down an incorrectly spelt word, we explain what it should be and praise her effort.
As a four player game, it is perfect for our family, and once we have outgrown the easier side we can continue with the free play game. It could do with a few tweaks here and there but overall, for the price, a good game to introduce words and spelling. All in all a good game if you can pick it up cheaper than it's RRP of £19.99.
Summary: 4 stars
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