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Article:    Software Bundles that Don't Cost a Bundle 

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hen you're looking to add some variety to your children's software collection, but hesitant about spending too much money, software bundles may be the answer. Though most contain older titles, many bundles are very worthwhile.

We've helped make bargain software hunting a little easier with the following selections of topnotch software bundles that will boost your kids' software library without slimming your wallet.

 

Best Software Bundles for Toddlers - Bargain Software

 


coverFisher Price Little People Discovery Games

This software package contains a bundle of three fantastic games for toddlers and young preschoolers--it's outstanding! Three full CD-ROMs are included, and star the Little People that most kids know and love in toy form. Simple navigation and clever activities introduce young children to the computer and to basic concepts like numbers and shapes. Excellent deal! 

[For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Fisher Price: Little People Discovery Games 3 Disk Compilation at Amazon.com]


Two of the three CD-ROMs bundled in Disney Learning Toddler introduce children to basic concepts, like shapes and colors, in errorless, clever, and fun environments. We love both Winnie the Pooh Toddler (pictured at left) and Mickey Mouse Toddler—both make wonderful "lapware" software for parents and their young children to enjoy together. The third CD-ROM, Rolie Polie Olie The Search for Spot, is misplaced since even our 5 and 6 year old testers had trouble figuring out what to do in the game. However, families will enjoy the bundle as a whole.

 [For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Toddler Bundle (Pooh Toddler, Mickey Toddler, and Book of Pooh) at Amazon.com]  

 

 

Best Software Bundles for Preschool to First Grade - Bargain Software

 

 

Top Pick. Adventure Workshop Mix 6, Preschool - 1st Grade (PC & Mac) includes Reader Rabbit Reading, Kid Pix Deluxe 3, Star Flyers Alien Space Chase, and Arthur's Schoolhouse. The fun and educational StarFlyers Alien Space Chase is a title that involves children in an outer space adventure requiring logical thinking to save the day. Kid Pix Deluxe 3 is a time-honored creativity program.

[For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Adventure Workshop Mix 6, Preschool - 1st Grade (PC & Mac) at Amazon.com]

 

Games for Girls (3rd Edition) includes 4 just-for-fun software games. Our take on the games: None of the games stand out as particularly special, but the package is a good deal and generally enjoyable. Dora the Explorer Backpack Adventure is fun but not as good as the latest Dora game (Dora Fairytale Adventures). Strawberry Shortcake (see our review) is a graphically-pleasing title that is not quite "sweet" enough (we gave it a rating of "C"). Disney Princess Fashion Boutique is a simple creativity program. In it, parents can add a real photo of their child's face that can be placed on a 3D model of a princess, and then dressed up. Kids follow three Disney Princesses (Cinderella, Snow White, and Sleeping Beauty) to different "enchanted worlds" where they collect new designs and other surprises. The fourth CD is Care Bears, which we have not yet reviewed.

[For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Games Just For Girls 3 at Amazon.com]


Disney Learning Preschool includes Winnie the Pooh Preschool, Mickey Mouse Preschool (pictured at right), and Stanley Tiger Tales. All three titles are solid programs, but our favorites are WTP Preschool, which takes kids through most of the preschool basics (and even French/Spanish!) in a fun environment (younger preschoolers might need some direction, but it is worth the effort), and Stanley Wild For Sharks, with its playful adventure that offers sporadic and fun educational opportunities in a vibrant and exciting context. The latter stays true to the offbeat Playhouse Disney Stanley television series. Great value for the money with this bundle!

 [For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Disney Preschool Bundle (Pooh Pre-School, Mickey Pre-School, and Stanley Wild for Sharks) at Amazon.com]

Disney Learning Kindergarten bundles three previously released titles: Winnie the Pooh Kindergarten includes lessons in basic math, music composition, basic Spanish and/or French vocabulary, sentence structure, and more. Mickey Mouse Kindergarten is a cute program in which children follow Mickey Mouse who is acting as a reporter in the big city. Children work with patterning, telling time, early geometry, sentence structure, problem solving, and more. Although there is a distinct story line in the game, children essentially explore activities in a free-play format. The third CD-ROM is Disney’s Phonics Quest, pictured at left. This title presents a series of very sound educational activities that are multi-level and quite extensive, many of which are quite clever. The only down side of this program is that it quickly becomes repetitive and can easily tire children with short attention spans. As a whole, this bundle offers variety and plenty of skills practice for young children.

 [For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Kindergarten Bundle (Pooh Kindergarten, Mickey Kindergarten, and Phonics Quest) at Amazon.com]


 

Best Software Bundles for First Grade to Third Grade - Bargain Software

 

Top Pick. Adventure Workshop Mix 6 ,1st Grade - 3rd Grade (PC & Mac) includes SpongeBob SquarePants Typing, Zoombinis Island Odyssey (see our review), ClueFinders Adventures, and Reader Rabbit Math. Four previously released full software programs are included in this package.

[For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Adventure Workshop Mix 6 ,1st Grade - 3rd Grade (PC & Mac)  for only $19.99 US at Amazon.com]

 

Disney Learning 1st & 2nd Grade is an excellent bundle. Included in the bundle is Disney-Pixar Buzz Lightyear 1st Grade, an educational playground that addresses a variety of skills learned in first grade, and Disney’s Learning Adventure: Search for the Secret Keys—a little gem of a game that has kids helping Mickey Mouse, Goofy, Donald Duck, and friends find keys so they can get themselves out of a haunted house. The twist here is that the games are really clever and the ghosts are not only friendly, they offer tutorials to kids who are struggling with an educational concept! Search for the Secret Keys made our Best Children's Software of 2002 list. The third title is Disney's Aladdin Reading Quest--excellent for developing early elementary reading skills. This bundle is highly recommended.

 [For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Disney's 1st & 2nd Grade Bundle (Pixar 1st Grade, Secret Keys, and Aladdin Reading Quest) at Amazon.com]  

 

Kids enamored with Humongous adventure games (which child isn't?) will appreciate these bundles. Pajama Sam Experience bundles an exceptional adventure game, Pajama Sam No Need to Hide When It's Dark Outside with a Pajama Sam creativity center and an arcade game starring this favorite and endearing software character. All titles will charm kids, and the adventure is best for children approximately 7 and up. 

Top Pick in Adventure Games  

 

 

 

 

 

Top Pick Four full CD-ROMs are included in this bundle. In Adventure Workshop 4th-6th Grade 6th Edition, you'll find includes Liberty's Kids (a history game that plunks kids right back into the American Revolution), Where in the USA is Carmen San Diego, ClueFinders Adventures, and The Oregon Trail (a classic simulation software).

[For more information, user reviews, or to buy: Adventure Workshop 4th-6th Grade 6th Edition for only $19.99 US at Amazon.com]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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