5 (ok 6) Non Violent and/or Educational Video Games for Kids

I am not a fan of violent video games.  My husband does play some, but he does so when our children are in bed for the night and he just wants to chill for a while.  Me, I’ll take a cute  game any time, or a word game.  But never violence. I’m especially not a fan of games with violence for children, especially for young children. We have violence everywhere in our lives, and there are just SO many great non violent options to find! An added bonus I keep finding?  These games are almost always priced LESS than their more violent counterparts.  Makes no sense to me. Here are some of OUR family favorites for non-violent video games- for Nintendo DS, LeapFrog Explorer/LeapPad, Nintendo Wii, XBOX. Scholastic is a brand known for quality, fun educational content, so I don’t think anyone will be surprised that I will highly recommend anything they put out.  The I Spy Games for DS and Leapfrog are fabulous- my kids adore the I Spy series, and while we do always prefer books, at least mama does, at least when the kids are playing these games, I know that they are engaged and learning and not just pressing buttons. scholastic ds games

  • I SPY® TWO GAME PACK for NINTENDO DSTM  & Nintendo WII includes two of the popular franchise’s award-winning titles – I SPY Fun House and I SPY Universe. Together, the games feature more than 50 riddles and over 200 levels of play for seek-and-find fans of all ages. To escape the topsy-turvy world in I SPY Fun House, players must earn tickets by completing games, riddles, and the ultimate Prize Popper challenge. I SPY Universe takes players on a different kind of puzzle-solving adventure – a trip through the cosmos. Players unlock new planets and explore the universe while searching for over 400 objects in 36 I SPY riddles, and playing six brain-teasing games.
  • For children 5-8, SMART GAMES FOR KIDS TWO GAME PACK for NINTENDO DSTM  – inclusive of two popular Nintendo DSTM titles – My Amusement ParkTM and Digging for Dinosaurs®. In My Amusement ParkTM, kids build and run their own entertainment venue. Players can choose from four different themes to create rides, food venues, and special attractions in their own personal park. Digging for Dinosaurs® challenges players with a variety of distinctive mini-games that range from simulated paleontological digs to dinosaur battles, all while teaching interesting facts about more than 20 prehistoric species.

I have to tell you that this Digging for Dinosaurs is a hot game with the Kindergarten and First Grade crowd.  My son saw it at Kohl’s months ago and still asks me about it weekly. “Mom, did you get that dinosaur game for my DS yet?”  Well, yes I have but it’s a secret, tucked away for Christmas.  Dinosaurs are cool, and kids can learn, play the “big kid” DS system, and still have fun- without violence. LeapFrog is another very well known, high quality brand that devotes a great deal of research and investment in producing games and toys that both educate and engage- in very fun, interactive ways. leapfrog explorer magic school bus game

The Magic School Bus: Oceans is now available for LeapFrog®’s award-winning Leapster Explorer™ and LeapPad™. Designed for children ages 5-8, The Magic School Bus: Oceans teaches young gamers hundreds of interesting facts about ocean life through fun trivia challenges and seven highly replayable games. Players can earn special badges by performing well in games or trivia challenges, and can redeem these badges for additional features – like decorations for the bus or a customized Magic School Bus driver’s license – through the LeapFrog® Connect Application.

We are kind of new to the Magic School Bus scene.  We have this game on DS and LeapPad, and in my house, it’s preferred on the LeapPad. It may simply be this way because all three kids can see the screen of the pad better than the DS- but they all like the game, even my 3 year old, though she obviously needs a lot of help with it. tangled wii

Tangled– There’s a little bit of the frying pan action, so I hesitated to put this in, but really, this is a CUTE game, easier to control so the littler ones can enjoy it, and when you whip Rapunzel’s hair around, flowers grow.  My girls adore this game, we have it for the Wii.

kinect nat geo tv xbox

Nat Geo TV for Kinect is FABULOUS!  National Geographic, but interactive.  Gorgeous photos and superb graphics.  Great for all ages.  It’s fun to even watch the kids play. funky barn 3ds Funky Barn for DS- this game is just hilarious.  Its cute, it’s fun, whether you are in 2D or 3D mode (I can’t stand 3D anything lately, I think I’m getting old).   Kids (and adults) can learn about working on a farm- in an oddball way, but they are still learning!

I hope this list helps you. I know so many little ones really want to have a gaming system and maybe like me, you are not really wanting to get them into violent games to start.  Let me know if you have other suggestions or ideas- I’d love to add them!   Some of these games were received to include in the gift guide- some are simply games my family loves.  Opinions are my own.

Funky Barn 3D Review #UbiChamps

Funky Barn 3D is not your average video game.  The animals are wacky, the contraptions funky. You’ll shear sheep, and you’ll milk cows, but not like you see in the movies.  MY favorite part of the game is shearing the sheep  in the Shearing Machine!  The kids think the entire game is funny- which I’d guessed they would simply by the title, but when I heard my kids laughing within 5 minutes of playing the game, I knew it was a hit.  It’s silly and it’s fun and…well, funky!  Combine all these features with 3D options and you have a crazy fun game that’s fun for all ages!  I may love the Shearing Machine but the pig just makes me giggle.  Just look at him.  The eyes on the characters in this game are awesome.  So expressive.

Fun for all ages- that’s for sure.  This is definitely a great game to keep around for some silly fun-and the secret?  You still learn about how to work on a farm, albeit in a silly way, but you are learning about caring for the animals and livestock while having silly fun.  I like that!  The kids really REALLY like this game.  They giggle and giggle even if they are just watching each other play, or watching me.  Good clean fun is what I like and Funky Barn 3D has that.

Run your own 3D funky and frenzied farm!

Ready to make some wool? Pop your sheep into The Shearing Machine and he will hilariously cannonball out, surprised but shorn. Ready to harvest your crops? Hook up the Flying FruitBox-Haybale-Copter that flies around crazily picking up boxes of fruit and grain. With tons of wacky contraptions and goofy animals, Funky Barn 3D, the first farm simulation game for Nintendo 3DS, is not your average farm game.

You can find Funky Barn 3D at Amazon, ToysRUs and other online retailers for about $29.99.


Thank you to Ubisoft for sponsoring this blog post. Please click here to learn more about Ubisoft. I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective. All opinions are my own. #UbiChamps

Nintendo has DS and Wii bundles for everyone just in time for the holiday!

On Sunday, Dec. 4, Nintendo launched new bundles featuring a pink Nintendo 3DSportable system and either the nintendogs + cats: French Bulldog and New Friends or nintendogs + cats: Toy Poodle and New Friends software.

The limited-edition bundles are available at a suggested retail price of $169.99 in the U.S. – the same price as the standard Nintendo 3DS system.  But these come WITH a game.  Plus, they have pink!  Yes, pink!

If you remember, we tried the 3DS over the summer, and thought it was cool.  While the 3d features are great, I love that you can turn them off.  The kids don’t mind 3d, I get dizzy after a while (must be my old age).  I still love me some Super Mario World though!  Any DS game will work on the 3DS, although obviously if they aren’t a 3D game you cannot play them in 3D mode.

I am so happy that Nintendo offers games like the nintendogs+cats games, because I think they are cute and fun and am always glad when violence is not included in games, particularly for children. I think there is plenty of violence and there’s a place for everything- it doesn’t have to be in games my kids play!  There’s a HUGE range of games and products to fit budgets and preferences with the Nintendo family.

If you have a someone on your list who loves pink and likes the idea of a DS, I’d be on the lookout for this limited edition pink 3DS bundle!!  It’s all kinds of awesome.

Not sure you want to go with the 3DS?  Nintendo has a lot of other options for both the DS line and the Wii! [click to continue…]

Nintendo is encouraging children across the country to come up with their own super abilities

Nintendo is encouraging children across the country to come up with their own super abilities, much the way that Kirby – the main character in Kirby’s Return to Dreamland – might have.

Kirby, the popular pink puffball, is also striving to help children in hospitals through Nintendo’s Starlight Foundation.

Kids who visit http://kirby.nintendo.com/superability will be invited to create drawings and descriptions of their dream Super Abilities, taking inspiration from Kirby’s Super Abilities in the new Kirby’s Return to Dream Land game for the Wii system. Their imaginative creations can be submitted to Nintendo and may be featured as part of a project to aid Starlight Children’s Foundation. [click to continue…]

Nintendo Select Games are priced for any budget!! (Prize Pack Giveaway)

Congrats Abbigail R for winning!! Enjoy!!

I’m loving the new, lower Nintendo Select pricing on more and more Nintendo favorites- it makes the Wii line more affordable and therefore, accessible to more families- and I think the Wii offers a fun way for families to play together and be at least a little active through the cold winter months!!

Mario Strikers Charged Mario Strikers Charged finds the Mushroom Kingdom crew storming the soccer field for fast-paced athletic kicksThis is a multiplayer game like most of the Selects line so you really can play as a family!

  • Mario is joined by other famous Nintendo characters that take on the role of captain. Select a host of popular teammates to make up the rest of the team
  • Use the skill the Wii Remote and Nunchuk controllers provide to win the ball, score unstoppable goals and take control of the goal keeper to perform spectacular saves
  • Action-packed multiplayer mode plus support for the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection service, which allows you to take part in tournaments with others online
  •   Punch-Out!! game delivers motion-controlled boxing thrills with a host of memorable characters.

    • Punch-Out!! features a total of 13 opponents for Little Mac to step into the ring with. 12 of which are returning from previous games in the Punch-Out!! series. Each has their own back-story and patterns of attacks to learn and learn to counter. Just a few of the characters you can expect to see are –
    • Little Mac – Small but extremely game, Little Mac is a young, up-and-coming fighter, who with the help of his trainer, ex-champion Doc Lewis, has set his sights on working his way through the ranks
    • Glass Joe – A fearful French fighter due to his extremely weak chin, Glass Joe will crumple to the mat quickly with just a few well-placed shots, making him an easy mark and a good warm-up for the fighters to follow
    • King Hippo – King Hippo is both huge and an immensely powerful fighter, but can be weakened with the right combinations to the head and body, giving you time to go for the knockout if you can survive his onslaught
    • Von Kaiser – An old-timey fighter whose rumored childhood difficulties have left him eager to dish out punishment in the ring, Von Kaiser is a dangerous opponent, but one who will turn tail if you can find his weakness

    Enter to  WIN a Nintendo  Select Prize Pack including Punch-Out! and Wii Play Motion with Black Wii Remote Plus here!

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    Nintendo 3DS goes Flame Red

    Nintendo Gets Fired up for the Holidays with New Flame Red Nintendo 3DS
    New Color, New Price and Great Games Make Nintendo 3DS a Must-Have

    We are loving our 3DS (black)- so many features, and honestly at times I think its almost like a miniature laptop!  I actually used it as a pedometer when I went for a walk last week- really neat and just one more way to keep track of exercise logged.  I love that the pricing has dropped, making this more affordable to families of gamers – and I can’t wait to see what cool games are coming next.  I am still blown away by what this thing can do, and I guarantee I haven’t figure it all out yet!! I LOVE the hot new flame red color- I think it is going to be a big seller for the product and perfect for holiday gift giving! [click to continue…]

    Wii Play: Motion

    We Wii a lot when the weather is crummy.   The past few weeks we have had several rainy and stormy days so we have played the Wii a bit!! Its a fun way for us to have together time, and its a good stress relief for me.  Plus, it gets ALL of us up and moving when we Wii which is never a bad thing, movement is better than being sedentary!!

    Wii Play: Motion comes with 12 built-in games and a motion controller. While only 4 of these games allow more than 2 players to oppose one another, there are still tons of fun games that are suitable for the 10+ crowd (so in our house, this means we just need 2 motion-contrllers for now).  I want to note now that the Wii Play: Motion comes with one controller, you will need to purchase an additional controller for each person you expect may play, so up to four. It brings a new feel to playing with your Wii and adds a new dimension of fun.

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