An interactive storybook

Computer Time

June 20, 1999

"Babe and Friends: Early Reader from Sound Source" (www.soundsourceinteractive. com) is an interactive storybook for children aged 4-7. In this program, the lovable film pig Babe and his hungry friends start a club to feed hungry animals. By scrolling through the story, children are able to hear and read text at their choice of three different reading levels. Throughout this read-along storybook, children can also participate in activities that reinforce various reading and phonics skills.

System requirements

* Windows 95/98

* PC minimum -- 16 MB RAM, CD-ROM, 8-bit sound card.

Benefits

* The program is easy to use.

* Children are rewarded after completing all the game activities by finding the map of Metropolis that can be printed out for them to color.

* Children learn values about caring for others and taking care of the environment.

* The story lines are cute and entertaining for young children, and they can click on objects in the pictures that accompany the story for surprise animations.

* A parent page updates the child's score each time the activity is played.

Drawbacks

* The reading skills are varied throughout; for example, there may be long and short vowels in one activity. It is difficult to know the sequence of skills.

* There is only one story, and that one is rather short. The company makes other interactive storybook games based on movies that may be worth pursuing, such as "An American Tail Movie Book."

-- Susan Rapp,

Village Reading Center

Pub Date: 06/20/99

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