The LeapBand, from the folks who make the popular LeapPad kids’ e-book, is a gadget that straps onto the wrist of a 3-to-7-year-old and encourages them to move around. Our experience with kids that age is that it’s far harder to get them to not move around, but we understand that people’s mileage on that may differ.
There are some 50 different activities that the LeapBand can spur, and the device tracks them and awards points for doing them. The more active the kids, the more points they earn. From the press release:
“Kids will have fun completing a variety of activities including “Walk like a crab,” “Spin like a helicopter” and “Pop like popcorn” no matter where they are.
“No matter where they are.” At an age where kids are in daycare, taking naps, and going to kindergarten. What could possibly go wrong? (Update: the company says that parents can implement School Time, Night Time and Quiet Time modes by connecting the device to a computer the LeapFrog Connect parent portal. The game mode can also be locked out by pressing the Left button for five seconds. That’s also how you unlock game mode, which is good, because no kid would ever figure that out, right?)
There’s more, from Dr. Jody Sherman LeVos, director of LeapFrog’s Learning Team:
“One of the best parts of the LeapBand experience is that kids will have so much fun playing they may not realize all of the physical exercise they are experiencing and the healthy habits they are learning.”
So kids will have so much fun playing that they forget they’re having fun playing.
It’s available in August, just in time for back to school. $40.