Win a LeapPad2 Explorer from Target!







***This contest is now CLOSED!  Megan is the winner!***

By now you all know how much I love Target, right?  Not simply because I spend half of my life and a good portion of my money there (although what’s not to love about one-stop shopping that also keeps the kids happy?).  And not just because they sometimes send me amazing products and pitch in when I ask them to help me help hurricane survivors.

What I really love about Target is their commitment to education.  As I’ve shared with you before, Target’s commitment to learning, especially reading, has them on track to give $1 billion to education by 2015.  They are focused on literacy.  They are renovating and restocking inner city school libraries.  They are working with local food banks to provide food to families in need so that students have the energy to learn.  They are making the world a better place one step at a time.

But it doesn’t end there.

Target offers a great selection of educational toys for kids both in stores and online.  We can’t stick our heads in the sand and hope that technology will go away.  It won’t.  But, as parents, we can be proactive by purchasing tech toys that are educational in nature.

Target recently sent us a LeapPad2 Explorer to test drive.  While my kids are no stranger to the iPad and they know their way around a touch screen better than most adults, they honestly LOVED (I mean really loved) the LeapPad2.

Here’s what Riley (age 6) had to say about it:  “It’s the best size for me to hold and I’m not worried about dropping it.  I really love the game where I make my own pet and practice writing and spelling (Pet Writing App – included) because I love the Stylus Pen!  And it’s purple, which, you know, is my favorite color.”


Here’s what Liam (age 4) had to say about it:  “I like the caterpillar game (Roly Poly Picnic 2 – included with free download) because I can hunt for letters and the art game (Art Studio App – included) for painting trucks and things.”


So what do I think?

I love that these tablets are made specifically for small hands.  They are light, durable, and easy to use.  I love that all of the apps are educational in nature.  There are over 325 stories, math games, and literacy games available for download, and you don’t have to worry about skill level and appropriateness for children.  They are ALL designed for children.  Another great feature?  You can program up to five different users and profile them according to age, so Riley gets Kindergarten level content while Liam’s is Pre-K.  It really takes the guess work out of it.

I am married to a musician and we are an Apple family.  These kids can use iPads, iPhones, and MacBook Pros beyond what you would expect for their ages.  And I am an enforcer of everything in moderation.  When they get tech time, which isn’t very often, I set a ten minute timer and they hand it over when the timer beeps.  No arguments.  No tears.  We have it down.

But there’s something very nice about having a safe technology device meant just for them.  I don’t have to worry about an accidental opening of something like Facebook (despite hiding it in a special folder) or Liam rearranging my apps for the 90th time.  And they love having something built just for them.  Although I never thought we need a LeapPad2 around here, I’m really glad that we had the opportunity to try it out.  It’s a keeper.

And…I have one LeapPad2 Explorer, courtesy of my friends at Target, for one of you!  Yes, you read that right.  This is the place to grab a LeapPad2 Explorer before Christmas arrives!

Here’s the deal:  Christmas in basically in five seconds, so this giveaway will go FAST.  You have 24 hours to leave me a comment detailing your favorite family holiday tradition (that does NOT include technology).  Want a second chance to win?  Stop by Target and check out the LeapPad2 stories and games they have.  Then head back here and leave me a 2nd comment telling me which one you think looks interesting for your child and why.

What are you waiting for?  Get your entries in NOW!

By the way…this LeapPad2 Explorer comes loaded with 5 apps, 2 built-in cameras, and video recorders.  It also has a Stylus Pen attached and a USB cable.  Warning:  You do need batteries.  And it’s purple – although, for once, Liam doesn’t seem to mind.  That’s how engaging this thing is!

Disclaimer:  Target sent me a LeapPad2 Explorer to review for you and a second one to give to one of you.  My kids have never used a LeapPad 2 Explorer prior to this.  All opinions contained within the post are my own (and those of my children).  We think this product rocks and we want you to have one too…so get your entries in and MAKE SURE that I have your email address!




About Katie

Katie Hurley is a Child, Adolescent, and Family Psychotherapist and Parenting Expert in Los Angeles, CA. She works in private practice in the South Bay area of Los Angeles, writes for PBS Parents, Washington Post Parents, and the Huffington Post. She is the author of "The Happy Kid Handbook: How to Raise Joyful Children in a Stressful World" (Tarcher/Penguin, 2015) and "No More Mean Girls: The Secret to Raising Strong, Confident, and Compassionate Girls" (Penguin Random House, 2018)