High-tech 'textbooks' for children
Portola Valley, Calif.
Since introducing its first two games, TLC has developed and marketed six others, each with a ''logo character'' - a clown, a (benign) space creature, a goose, and a racoon - which introduces the player to the game. For example:
Juggles' Rainbow, for ages 3 to 6 (a group that includes some who can't yet read), features a clown character who sets the scene for colorful spatial games. It starts with such concepts as above and below, left and right, using colored graphics - a rainbow, a butterfly, and so on. This program also helps children learn to recognize the shapes of p, d, b, and q - the most difficult letters in the alphabet to differentiate.
Gertrude's Secrets, for ages 4 to 9, in which Gertrude Goose introduces the players to a series of logic games, teaches them to categorize objects and plan ahead.
Rocky's Boots, the award-winning game for children 7 and older, features a clever racoon. Designed to conveys the basics of computer circuits, it requires the player to ''build'' animated logic machines that operate a kicking boot. Players score or lose points for ''booting'' certain objects. The TLC brochure says Rocky's Boots ''has the appeal of an arcade game with the content of a logic course.''