Back to School 2007: Pre-School Tech

Kids need a lot of gear. Before Child — Kasper is now 20 months, BTW, and just starting pre-pre-school — we used to travel with a backpack and a flask of whiskey. Now, we travel with 5 bottles of milk (great fun with the TSA), 20 diapers, and 50 stuffed animals… and that’s just for a walk around the block. That said, let’s take a look at some of the gadgetry little K loves.

We begin with the Quinny Buzz. This is a great stroller, recently released here in the U.S. at about the same price as the Bugaboo. The stroller folds completely flat and internal pneumatic device makes the thing hiss up like Ripley’s exo-skeleton powering up to kill the Alien Mother. It is compatible with Cabrio car seats and has a bassinet attachment for the wee ones. It’s not very portable, though, which is why we got a portable fold-up stroller called the Summer QuickSmart. It was around $100 and folds up into the size of a larger briefcase.


Clearly, however, no self-respecting toddler wants to roll in to school in a stroller. He wants to walk, head high, into class clutching an Ikea elephant for $2. We bought 4 of them in case he loses one and sometimes he sleeps with all of them at once.
Next we have a few Fisher-Price gadgets, thankfully lead paint free. There is a Polish Laugh & Learn puppy that he got from Grandma and Grandpa, but you can also get it for $19.99 on Amazon. He and his friends rock out to the multiple songs it plays and for extra creepiness it sometimes goes off in the middle of the night while we’re watching TV and tells us someone is touching its hand.
He also has the Fisher-Price Talking Toolbench, but don’t get it. It’s really loud and very annoying. He loves, it though.
Then there is the Shelcore Sound Beginnings Touch ‘N Teach laptop. This one is in Polish and English but you can get them here as well. The mouse on the front is supposed to be a computer mouse. It gets annoying after a while, which is why we let the batteries run down. I also gave him a few Motorola phones from 2001 and a cordless keyboard from an old Microsoft TV installation.

img_8905.JPGGenerally, however, most of his favorite toys are made of plush and wood. We bought him a train set from Ikea with wooden rails and he prefers that over most of the noisy garbage he’s accreted so far. In preschool he likes the plastic cars and trucks and apparently the PCs at school sit unused while the kids run around planting trees and doing little dances. I guess this kid will turn out alright after all.