The Play n’ Trace eWriter is a fantastic use of Boogie Board’s existing LCD writing technology, now targeting improvement in children’s learning and development. With this transparent eWriter, children can practice writing, drawing shapes, sketching freehand, and more. With the included tracing templates and companion iPad app, there is no end to creativity! Play n’ Trace sells for $29.99.
As I mentioned in my announcement post, back in October, Boogie Board has been around for a while with their easy-to-use, yet simply genius eWriters that were geared towards adults as an eco-friendly alternative to paper notepads. They have finally found a way to harness their excellent LCD eWriting technology to help children grow and learn, all while having fun and preventing the messes that can be left behind with paint, markers, etc.
The transparent screen of the Play n’ Trace allows kids to trace anything they can place underneath the screen, which allows for unlimited learning options. Kids can trace their favorite cartoon characters while learning to draw, or they can trace mommy and daddy’s handwriting while learning to write.
The defining features of the Play n’ Trace are as follows:
- First-of-its-kind translucent LCD writing screen
- Artist’s palette form-factor
- Boogie Board writing experience
- Clean fun, no need for messy markers or crayons
- Extensive 5-year battery life
- Many options for fun: 5 Play n’ Trace accessory packs are sold, including: Learning Pack, Sea Life, Farm Friends, Space Adventures, and Princess Dream. Each accessory pack includes 2 reusable cling scenes, 1 brush stylus, and 6 tracing templates.
The Play n’ Trace is very durable and will last a long time with the abuse that toddlers and children can dole out. There is a stylus holder on the side of the Play n’ Trace that holds the stylus when not in use, although I can very easily see the stylus slipping out and getting lost. The unique form factor is fun to hold and kids will love to play with it, especially once they see that their writing appears before their eyes on the LCD screen. Once they are done, you hit the erase button and the screen clears and it’s ready for more learning fun!
The Play n’ Trace comes with one accessory pack that includes number and letter tracing templates. You have the option of purchasing one of 5 additional accessory packs that include: Learning Pack, Sea Life, Farm Friends, Space Adventures, and Princess Dream. Each accessory pack includes 2 reusable cling scenes, 1 brush stylus, and 6 tracing templates.
With the 5-year battery life, your kids might outgrow the Play n’ Trace before you ever have to change a battery, which is not something you hear very often with children’s toys. And the Play n’ Trace is very light so it’s easily taken with you in the car or to grandma and grandpa’s house for the weekend.
With the Play n’ Trace’s free iPad companion app, you can use your family’s iPad in conjunction with your Play n’ Trace to bring additional functionality. It’s important to note that the Play n’ Trace app is certified by Excellent Play, a testing agency for children’s toys. There are currently a total of six key lessons available on the app, each with three levels of development. These lessons include things like Directions, Numbers, Colors, Shapes, Feelings, and Letters/Writing. I’d also imagine that the Play n’ Trace app will be updated over time to provide even further learning opportunities. Check out some screenshots from the app, below.
Boogie Board was also kind enough to send me one of their Jot 8.5 memo pads to compare the adult and children’s versions of their products. All I can tell you is that we have been using the Jot 8.5 daily ever since it came in the mail. It has magnets on the back so we have it attached to our kitchen fridge and we use it as a to-do list. The writing feels great and it’s so easy to use. Writing on the Jot 8.5 and the Play n’ Trace feels exactly the same, which is to say that it feels very similar to writing on paper, but with less friction.
I have a 15-month-old daughter and I never understood how important her learning and development would be to me before we had her. Although she is too young to play with the Play n’ Trace, as she’ll probably just want to put the stylus in her mouth and chew on it, this is something that I’ll be putting away for her to use when she’s old enough to use it. I can’t wait to show her how cool this technology is and see her learn and grow from the use of it. With the transparent screen and unlimited learning potential, I am excited to see my daughter use the Play n’ Trace to it’s full potential.
I think Boogie Board’s Play n’ Trace is a fantastic children’s product and I think this is something that children around the globe can benefit from while using both the left and right sides of their brain. The durable nature of the product and the fact that the AAA batteries last for 5 years just adds to the appeal of the product in my mind. The Boogie Board should be on your holiday gift list for all of the kids 3+ in your family!
You can purchase the Play n’ Trace on Amazon or many other online or brick and mortar retailers.
Source: The Boogie Board Play n’ Trace and Jot 8.5 were provided to me as a review sample by the manufacturer.
What I Like: Durable plastic design; Innovative see-through LCD screen; 5-year battery life; Included tracing templates; Free companion iPad app; Additional tracing templates for sale; Limited only to your imagination.
What Needs Improvement: Stylus holder isn’t strong enough in my opinion.