October 2002

Cyber News and Reviews is a monthly column published for parents, teachers & business owners featuring kids educational software reviews, business software reviews (small business & home business), games and entertainment articles, a free resource since 1995.


JumpStart Advanced Kindergarten from Knowledge Adventure

JumpStart Advanced Kindergarten is the latest and greatest, upgrade to their JumpStart educational software series which includes JumpStart Preschool, JumpStart 1st Grade and JumpStart 2nd grade.  This series has been around for at least 6 years offering exceptional quality with educational quantity for kids from pre-school to middle school.  Each title offers high quality graphics, sound effects and music to provide entertainment with learning.

The newest Kindergarten title has many more features then the original (first reviewed here in September 1996 and then again in July 1998) and is better than ever.  This latest version offers something completely different: seven selectable learning styles with help from all the popular JumpStart characters:  Frankie The Team Leader, Eleanor The Reader, Casey The Athlete, Pierre The Musician, Kisha The Artist, CJ The Scientist and Hopsalot The Math Whiz. A learning style can be suggested by the program after answering as series of questions.   Also, a very nice feature allows the difficulty to be self-adjusting

After a quick installation from a single CD you're on your way to your goal: earn points for power boosters and then participate in the wacky car races.  The activities are centered at schoolhouse with access to Fun With Phonics, Math Made Easy, Paint and Draw, Learn About Nature, Music Lessons and Science Skills, with several arcade-style video games that really encourage learning.

My two girls, Becky (7-years-old) and Sarah (11-years-old) are now too old to test this title, but in my opinion, it's the tops. All the activities are fun and educational with great graphics and sound.   Also, if you want to save some money and still have an old JumpStart CD lying around, you can trade it in for a quick and cool $10 rebate (it must be a JumpStart Preschool, Kindergarten, 1st Grade or 2nd Grade) to qualify).

JumpStart Advanced Kindergarten sells for $28.50 and will run on any multimedia PC, Pentium 233 MHz or faster, 64 MB RAM with Windows 98/ME/2000/XP and a 16x CD-ROM drive.  It also runs on a Power Mac G3 233 MHz or faster with 64 MB RAM and a 24x CD-ROM drive. 

Howard Berenbon

Software Companies Mentioned

Knowledge Adventure, Inc.
19840 Pioneer Avenue
Torrance, CA 90503
Phone: 1-800-545-7677
URL: education.com

Quick Picks of Recommended Titles

Barbie Groovy Games for the Game Boy Advance from Vivendi Universal - $29.99

Girls, ages 5 and up, who love Mattel's Barbie, will love this groovey game cartridge for the Nintendo Game Boy Advance from Vivendi Universal Games.  Girls will take a ride with Barbie, and then select a game to play.  They'll spend hours playing the nine video games, some new, some old, including tic-tac-toe, hangman, checkers,  concentration, designed with girls in mind.  The new games include Grove & Move, Conga Line, Gems & Jewels and the Bubble Machine.

Powerbacks Slide Alchemy by Gary Blue - $49.95

This is a great collection of PowerPoint presentation backgrounds and templates, 2,000 in all, for any professional or amateur slide presentation designer.  Also, kids can use them for their PowerPoint presentations in school.  For more information visit powerbacks.com or call 1-877-568-6938 toll free.