Dr. Toy: Best Software

The world of computers may still be a struggle for you, but your child may be ready to explore electronic learning. You can learn with your child if you share the exciting learning opportunities that lie ahead. New software can bring new worlds of information. Balance your child's time spent with computers with books and other activities. Monitor your child's usage and select products carefully. Make selections based on age, topics of interest and skills. Both of you can enjoy the computer and can have fun with these products. Here are some of Dr. Toy's current selections for 'Best Software Products.'

Keroppi Day Hopper (Big Top Productions) CDROM software (7-12, $54.95) 800-900-PLAY Encourages creative abilities, journal writing and self-expression. Includes organizational skills, calendar and address book.

Total Amazon (Computer Curriculum Corp.) CD ROM (8-12, $39.95) 800-983-5333 Exotic locations, animals, and learning about the changing environment. Includes habitats, rain forest, the indigenous people, plus The Macmillan Dictionary for Children.

Radio Addition (Conexus) CD ROM, software (3-8, $34) 800-545-7677 Helps to understand math with music, games and animation.

Ocean Planet Smithsonian (Discovery Channel Multimedia) CD ROM (10-12, $49.95) 800-762-2189 Unlock the mysteries of the vast ocean with videos and information.

Destination: Rain Forest (Edmark) CD Rom, software (6-12, $35) 800-426-0856 Enter the Rainforest to learn language skills plus important facts and discoveries about the rainforest.

Dr. Peet's Talk/Writer (Hartley Courseware) Software, CD ROM (4-8, $59.95) 800-247-1380 Develop language skills, letter recognition, writing, spelling with many fun activities.

Dr. Seuss's ABC (Living Books) CD ROM, software (3-7, $39.95) 800-397-4240 Learn sights and sounds of the alphabet with music and animation. Ace Publisher (Mindplay) Software, educational skills (10-12,$69.99) 800-221-7911 Children learn grammar, editing and the business of publishing as they create, produce and learn to sell their own manuscripts.

Adventures in Fairyland (Optimum Resources) CD ROM (4-8,$14.99) 800-327-1473 Story, coloring and puzzle program based on favorite fairy tales plus creativity, thinking and many levels of play.

Fun with Electronics (Philips Media) CD ROM, software (8-12, $44.99) 800-340-7888 Teaches the child basic principles of electricity with a toolbox to complete 25 projects.

Dr. Toy's Response to the concerned mom with an ll month old who wonders if her baby is getting enough stimulation. Dr. Toy suggests, enjoy each day and share discoveries. Talk, sing and use selected developmentally appropriate playthings, but most of all relax. Don't push yourself or your baby. Learning comes through natural play, fun and laughter. Watch her. Your baby takes it all in. The quality of the time you spend together is what is most important.

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