Media Guy: A look at animal-themed fun

By Andrew Borkowski on May 15, 2012
Take a walk on the wild side with rats, pandas and horses, then sooth those beats with a little music.

Lab Rats

More nuttiness from the Disney crew in this high-tech comedy show about a teenager, Leo, whose life is turned upside down when his inventor stepdad gives him a gift of three bionically engineered superhuman siblings. At first, Leo’s bionic bodyguards give his lacklustre existence a serious upgrade, but he soon learns that super families can encounter super glitches.

Disney XD, Saturdays at 6 p.m.

Lola’s Alphabet Train

Lola the Panda leads three- to seven-year-olds through five alphabet games to help them master their ABCs. The ride begins with a simple “Touch-the-Letter” game, and advances through memory games as their skill level improves, until they can use what they’ve learned in
more challenge “Drag-and-Drop” games. Once they’ve mastered English they can play in French, German, Spanish and Dutch.

Nintendo DS, $1.99. iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad, $0.99 (Free “Lite” version available for iOS devices)

Dark Days at Saddle Creek by Shelley Peterson 

Shelley Peterson may be known readers, she’s known as the her love of animals. Dark Days at Saddle Creek brings the total to Sundancer and Mystery at Saddle Creek. In this adventure, Bird discovers the source of her ability to communicate telepathically with horses and other animals as well as secrets about her past.

Dancing Cat Books, $12.95

The New York Philharmonic Kidzone

The prestigious U.S. orchestra presents this great site for young virtuosi and those who might like to be. Kids can learn to identify the instruments of the orchestra by taking a walk through the Instrument Storage Room, then help the Maestro sort them into their proper sections. They
can take a Composition Workshop and learn to make their own instruments in the Instrument Lab. Some games and quizzes require a basic familiarity with classical music, while others will help them attain that familiarity. The only drawback is that the webmasters have been a bit stingy with onscreen instructions and it can take a bit of trial and error before you get things working.

Originally published in ParentsCanada, April 2012

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