VTech Cogsley Learning Robot Review
The Cogsley Learning Robot from VTech has all the potential for being one of the top interactive educational toys for both boys and girls. It has plenty of fun features as well as practical points that parents will love. But is there a downside? Read on to find out.
* Moves, sings and dances.
* Comes with 30 ‘chips’ to have him do different things.
* Responds to sounds (clapping, talking, singing).
* Computer screen in his belly.
* Can help to teach numbers, letters and words.
* Chips are stored in his backpack.
* Batteries are included.
* Age 3-6 (we think 3-5).
VTech Learning Robot Review
Cogsley the Learning Robot has 6 different play modes and 30 ‘computer chips’ (that look more like casino chips!) Each chip makes Cogsley do something different, and kids feed them into his forehead above his nose. They can also make Cogsley do different stuff by turning his gears (e.g. his nose or his ears). So playing with this VTech robot automatically helps a child to develop coordination skills.
Beyond that, Cogsley the VTech learning robot will respond to sounds that your child makes. Kids love this because it makes the toy seem like a real playmate or pet. Clapping, singing and talking to Cogsley can all get a reaction.
Then there’s his role as an educational toy. The different learning modes include helping with letter recognition and the alphabet as well as counting and extending the child’s vocabulary. He even says ‘Ouch, that hurt!’ if you twist his ears too hard, teaching kids not to play too rough. It’s one of those educational toys that is really fun for a kid.
So what’s the downside? The main problem is going to be if you buy the Cogsley robot for the wrong child. For example, the manufacturer’s recommended age range is 3-6, but we think this is mostly a toy for under-fives. A 6-year-old might find it childish and would probably prefer something that has more potential for their developing minds and imaginations. But the VTech Cogsley is great for a 3 or 4-year-old, and if it wasn’t for that safety rule about small parts, we’re sure a lot of 2-year-olds would love him too – but you would have to take care that they didn’t damage him by throwing or dropping him.
Some younger kids might try to ‘feed’ Cogsley’s chips through his mouth at first, but if you explain they are not the kind of chips you eat but programming chips that feed his brain, they will soon learn to put them in the right place.
The vocabulary may seem a little weird because it’s focused around the robot rather than things kids would normally recognize. For example, the word for L is ‘lever’, when a more familiar word would be ‘lion’ or ‘lemon’. But this is one of the ways that the VTech robot can extend a child’s vocabulary.
Sometimes it’s a little hard to understand what he’s saying, especially if he is making noise with his arms or other movements at the same time. However, if you help your child figure out the words the first time, he or she will soon remember them. Kids have amazing memories when they are engaged in something!
Cogsley the VTech learning robot has some great parent-friendly features too. First off, there’s a volume control! So many toys don’t have this, it’s a matter for celebration when you find one that does!
Also, the Cogsley robot comes with a neat little backpack where you can store all of his computer chips, so they’re not so likely to be lost. Putting the chips into the backpack is another coordination task that toddlers will find fun.
If you’re looking for a toy that’s both educational and fun for a child aged under 5, the VTech Cogsley Learning Robot could be a great choice. We give it 4.5 stars for this age range.
Published December 6th, 2012