Learning with Curious George Computer Time

September 30, 1998

"Curious George: Reads, Writes, and Spells for Grades 1 & 2." Houghton-Mifflin Interactive (hmi), 120 Beacon Street, Somerville, Mass. 02143. Suggested retail price $44.95.

This interactive CD-ROM is the fourth title in Houghton-Mifflin's Young Reader's series. The program captures children's interest using the familiar and lovable storybook character, Curious George. His exploits take him on adventures as a cub reporter following the story. There are 12 activities along the way in which children maneuver George around various obstacles and help him stay out of trouble while they practice building reading, writing, spelling and vocabulary skills.

The Benefits:

* The program was developed by the School Division of Houghton-Mifflin, so the skills will closely parallel the school curriculum.

* Parental controls allow parents to adjust the level of difficulty and the focus of each activity.

* At the end of each session, a certificate of completion can be printed out.

* Children read and provide the words for short stories and

newspaper articles that can be printed out.

* Children are involved in the proofreading and editing process.

* The stories and words are read clearly and with good expression.

The Drawbacks:

* The drawings and original Curious George book scenes are appealing, but may contain less diversity than other programs that allow you to click on objects in the scenes.

* Some phonics knowledge is needed for many of the spelling activities. Thus, the "Curious George: Learns Phonics Program for Kindergarten and 1st Grade" may be a better choice for beginning readers or students with spelling difficulties.

- Susan Rapp

Village Reading Center

Pub Date: 9/30/98

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