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Review CornerSoftware
Dr. Seuss Preschool
Rating: Rating
The Bottom Line
An excellent title for older preschoolers, whether they are enamored with Dr. Seuss stories or not! This should not be considered for kids at the younger range of the suggested age group.
Ages: 2-4  Subject: Early Learning  Brand: Broderbund
Review Sections: Product Overview  Entertainment Value  Technically Speaking  Design  Skills Covered  Replayability  Educational Value  Dollar Value
image Product Overview
Horton the Elephant goes for a stroll through the jungle and stumbles upon Elma Sue, a lost baby animal. He needs your child's help to reunite Elma Sue with her mother. Kids need to play the activities they find in their "travels" in order to earn clues about what Elma Sue's mother looks like. Along the way, they will meet up with some adorable and much loved Dr. Seuss characters.

Clicking on the "Cool Pool" sign will lead you to 4 early math activities:

  • Fox in Socks Sorting: sort socks that are hanging on a clothesline into the correct bins, discriminating color, size, and pattern differences. Level 1 requires sorting by color, level 2 by size, and level 3 by both color and size.
  • Yertle's Counting Turtles: Horton needs help stacking turtles in Yertle's pond. As kids play this game, they learn to recognize numerals and practice counting as well.
  • Sneezlebee's 123s: a matching game played on flowers. On level 1, the flowers are open and kids simply match the numbers. On levels 2 & 3, they are closed so that it becomes a classic memory game, except that kids must match numbers with quantities and number words.
  • Fish Follies: color in the fish costumes for the Fish Follies show. Kids need to listen carefully and identify different colors, sizes, and shapes.
The sign that reads "Jungle of Nool" leads to 4 language arts activities:
  • Pop's Rhymes: find rhyming words to complete silly verses.
  • Mayzie's ABC's: kids need to help put all the eggs (each with a letter of the alphabet written on it) back in their nests in correct alphabetical order.
  • Monkey Matching: a matching game similar to Sneezlebee's 123s above, except using letters of the alphabet, and higher levels containing phonics.
  • Floob Phonics: feed the Floobs by matching letters with corresponding pictures and words.

Pictured at left, kids must place the egg marked with a lowercase "h" into the correct nest.

In the central area of the Jungle, there are 3 more mini-activities: Musical Birds, in which 4 birds each sing a part of a song — click on them individually or on the conductor bird to hear them all together; Squirrel Tag, in which a squirrel runs and hides; and Magic Flower, which is a simple creativity activity where kids can redesign a flower.

Progress Tracking is provided as well. It shows what was completed and at what percentage of success.

This software is replete with the silly rhymes and Dr. Seuss characters that we all know and love. The translation from books to bytes is superbly done. Between each screen, a wonderful little poem is spoken. The graphics are wonderful and the music is excellent. My children find this software totally engaging and delightful. For kids who may not be so patient with all the transition screen chatter, make use of the spacebar to skip through the narration. The clue hunt is adorable and very motivating.

We love this software! It is charming and the prereading and premath practice is great. However, it should be noted that some points were lost in our rating of the software due to the suggested age group of 2 to 4. This will be more appropriate for older preschoolers, and even kindergartners! The activities, the poems, and even the clues require academic skills and longer attention spans that most 2 and 3 year-olds simply haven't acquired yet.

My almost 5 year-old daughter has taken to this game like duck to water. She really, really, really wants Dr. Seuss Kindergarten for her 5th birthday, even choosing it over other present options that she would have thought to be spectacular the day before she got Dr. Seuss Preschool.

Technically Speaking
Minimum requirements for Windows 3.1 or higher are: 486DX/66, 8 Mb RAM for Win 3.1/16 Mb RAM for Win 95/98, 2X CD ROM. Sound and video cards should be compatible with Direct X for Win 95. Mac users require a minimum of 68040/20, 6-7 Mb RAM, 2X CD ROM. This software installs using up 20 MB of hard drive space.

Skills Covered
audio & visual discrimination, memory, simple phonics, rhyming words, reading readiness, upper and lowercase alphabet, alphabet sequencing, counting, numeral recognition, quantities, color, size and pattern discrimination

Educational Value
Skills covered are broad, but many activities are too hard for most 2 and 3 year olds.That aside, the learning activities are very well done.

Entertainment Value
Plenty of kid appeal and loads of fun to play.

Excellent design, featuring nice difficulty level options and easy navigation.

I expect this software to have a better than average shelf life and replay value.

Dollar Value
Definitely worth $20 US (and about $30 Cdn).

Released: 1998