At Mommy University we have always been really big fans of Educational Insights. Their toys spark curiosity, boost academic knowledge and enhance cognitive development. Many toys also encourage a love of science and nature. So when Educational Insights asked Mommy University to be an EI Insider, of course we said YES! As an EI Insider we will be provided with educational toys throughout the year that we will happily share with you! We will also be offering amazing giveaways. (Reviews are not required but appreciated.)
For quite some time, Educational Insights has offered an extensive collection of Hot Dots for the preschool population to help foster a love of reading and independent learning. A child equipped with a Hot Dots pen experiences feedback through music and light as it interacts with the activities in the accompanying book. The Hot Dots collection is massive with various books and pens available including the most recent Pete the Cat collection. Due to the success of this set, Educational Insights launched Hot Dots Tots.
My daughter, who is almost three years old, was ecstatic to receive her Hot Dots Tots interactive books. The “All About Me” Hot Dots Tots set that we received included two books: A Visit to the Doctor and Happy Birthday Baby. When you read the book to your child, they can place Elliot, the teddy bear wand, over the correct answer and a pleasant tune will play. There appears to be more than one tune so you will not become irritated with the same music playing. When your child puts the wand on the wrong answer no music is played, so this particular Hot Dots focuses on positive reinforcement to encourage young children to interact with the books. My daughter enjoyed telling me, ”I did it” when she heard the music playing as much as I enjoyed watching her play with the books.
Mommy University Presents
Educational Benefits of Hot Dots Tots
Enhances Hand-Eye Coordination
The teddy bear wand appealed to my daughter and was easy for her to use and place over the different answers to get a response. Little hands are often times awkward as they manipulate new toys. In order for the positive reinforcement sound to play, the child has to place the wand on the right spot within the page. The wand is lightweight and easy for toddlers to hold; however placing on specific points in the book requires them to develop their hand-eye coordination along with visual-spatial skills.
Encourages a Love of Reading
I find that the Hot Dots Tots is a great introduction to reading for young toddlers. Essentially, at this age you will need to sit down with your child to review this book. It is recommended to read to your child each day to help encourage a love of reading. The book is small which makes it phenomenal for your diaper or travel bag, which means that your child can have a book they enjoy easily accessible when out and about or traveling. Since the book is small you, as a parent, might get tired of reading it; however, children at this age learn best from repetition. If you find yourself tired of reading the pages, you can ask them to identify the different shapes, colors, and words they find on the page in addition to the question that appears on each page. You can also ask open-ended questions based on the pictures in the pages which helps develop critical thinking skills.
Boosts Academic Knowledge
The books are sturdy and will survive little hands but most importantly the books are engaging so young children will be exposed to vocabulary, prepositions, adjectives, comparisons, opposites, shapes and colors. This offers children the opportunity to expand their vocabulary by using Elliot the wand or you can use the questions as a prompt for enhanced vocabulary development. For example, there is a page that asks the reader to identify which baby is sad. You can introduce synonyms, however, I like the idea at this point in the book to make different faces and talk about the emotions I am displaying. My daughter felt little tastes of success that helped strengthen her confidence and thus encourages her to read more books.
Hot Dots Tots does not interact with the other Hot Dot collections but is a great introduction for toddlers to develop an appreciation of reading through its interactive design and positive reinforcement. Hot Dot Tots is currently available on Amazon and is offered in several sets (contains affiliate link): My World, All About Me and Animals. We will be packing Hot Dots Tots as we enjoy family vacations this summer and look forward to playing with the books!
Want to win your own Hot Dot Tots? Here’s your chance!
Here are the rules and conditions for this amazing giveaway:
Participants MUST live in the United States or Canada.
The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter.
The contest will run from July 31, 2015 through 12am on August 11, 2015.
The winner will be announced on August 11, 2015.
The winner will receive the Hot Dots Tots All About Me set directly from Educational Insights.
The winner must respond within 2 days or another winner will be chosen.
To enter, participants can earn entries by: visiting the Mommy University Facebook page (likes are appreciated but not required), following Mommy University on Twitter, sharing the contest with friends and commenting on this blog post by answering the required question. One FREE entry can also be given when this option is chosen (you’re welcome).
No purchase is necessary to win.
Your chances of winning are dependent on the number of entries received.
Enter here: a Rafflecopter giveaway