* Prices may differ from that shown
~ LeapFrog Twinkle Twinkle Little Scout ~ My little boy was only four months old at Christmas time so there wasn't much in the way of toys that were suitable for him but when I spotted this cute little pup in a toy catalogue I ordered it. After ordering it I also saw it in B&M Bargains and was pleased that I had got it. Scout is an absolutely adorable green pup, previous to buying this we also had My Puppy Pal Scout so I knew the quality to expect. Twinkle Twinkle Little Scout is adorable, he is very soft to the touch and quite cuddly. Scout appears to be sleeping inside a little blue fleecy sack, tucked underneath him is a detachable comforter for your child. Going down the side of Scouts blanket are three buttons, one being the power button, one being a button that has Scout singing little rhymes and saying a few phrases and the last being the button to press for night time music. This is the feature we use the most as you can set it to play soothing music for 5, 10 or 20 minutes, or you can choose to have nature sounds for the same amounts of time. There is a little moon by Scouts head that softly glows and acts as a night light. We bought our little one a lovely cot mobile which was fantastic when he was younger but now he presses it on and off himself so we have turned it off and use this Twinkle Twinkle Little Scout instead. My little boy absolutely adores this toy and he does use the comforter to rub against his cheek to fall asleep. The gentle soothing sounds soon have him in the land of nod and to be honest it is a item that I wouldn't be without. As well as being adorable it actually has fantastic features that work. This can be bought in quite a few places but Amazon have it priced at £14.99. I think this is a fair price for this brilliant little thing. It's quite small and sits neatly at the top end of my sons cot, so far the batteries have lasted since Christmas and they are still going strong. It requires 2AAA batteries.
Both my kids have already got the Leapfrog My Puppy Pals, in the form of Violet and Scout, and it was by chance that we came across these smaller 'Twinkle Twinkle' versions when we were Christmas shopping last year. We also had an Argos catalogue at home and once my eldest daughter got wind of the toys, she used to linger on the relevant page and fawn over these 'Baby Violets' and 'Baby Scouts'. So despite my children, aged 2 and 4, being above the target audience age (suitable from birth) for these toys, we decided to buy them one each for Christmas. My 4 year old received the Violet version, and my 2 year old received the Scout version, which is the product I am reviewing here. But in all honesty they are exactly the same toy, apart from the colour. I think the main intention of Twinkle Twinkle Little Scout is to be a night time soother/cuddle toy for babies because he plays lullabies and makes other soothing sounds, but my kids have had an awful lot more fun than that; I think this is mainly due to the fact that they are mini versions of their well-loved Violet & Scout toys. **Twinkle Twinkle** The toy is quite small and looks like a miniature version of My Puppy Pal Scout, but the difference is his eyes are shut, he is laid down snuggling under a blanket (which detaches), and clutching a yellow moon. When you detach the blanket you will see that Scout has no legs, under the blanket it just looks like he is swaddled in a tiny blanket, and on this are 3 buttons which activate his various modes. *On/Off * - Press this and Scout will make an 'Ooooo' sound, or if you press it when the music is playing, it will stop. *Numbers* - This button has about 15 different pre-set phrases or music. There are two lullabies which Scout himself sings; forest sounds, ocean sounds and train sounds; various counting rhymes such as counting toes, fingers or sheep and the voice will count to either 5 or 10, and then there are things where the voice will ask you to find Scout's mouth, ears, nose etc. *Lullabies* - On here you have 4 different options - 10 or 20 minutes or lullabies, and 10 or 20 minutes of environmental sounds. The lullabies are just music and most of it I do not recognise but it is quite soothing and actually reminds me of sitting in church when I was a kid waiting for the service to begin and listening to background organ music. The environmental sounds include things such as the wind blowing, rain drops, waves, trains, night time insects etc. These buttons are really easy to press, and sometimes can get pressed accidently because they are so sensitive. But I see this as a good thing because as the toy is designed for young babies, they will be more than perfectly able to activate the toy themselves. When Scout is talking or singing, the yellow moon lights up; it's a very dull glow but I suppose this might be soothing to a young baby and won't dazzle them as they try to drift off in their cot. **Learning** As always, I'm quite dubious about the learning possibilities with toys such as these. In all honesty the only thing that Scout has the potential to teach is numbers and facial features, but I hope I'm speaking for the majority of parents by saying that most of us will be able to teach our children these things without the aid of a toy. But having said that, this morning when I was pressing Scout's buttons to find out what he actually says, my 2 year old was sat with me pointing to his nose when he asked, and his ears etc. She also copied his voice when he counted to 10. So although she hasn't 'learnt' these things from Scout, I suppose it's fair to say that by using a toy like this it keeps things fresh in their minds, and it's fun for them to do. As a parent, it's something for you to do with your child; you can sit holding Scout pressing his buttons and seeing what your child knows about eyes, ears & noses and how far they can count. But I wouldn't buy this toy on the basis of it being a learning aid. **Enjoyment** To say my kids have loved these toys from the moment they saw them is an understatement, the delight on their faces on Christmas morning was a moment I have captured on film and will never forget. It is more to do with the fact that these are baby versions of their current Scout and Violet that makes them love them so much, rather than the toy's functions. But my 4 year old takes hers to bed every single night and often plays the lullabies as she drifts off to sleep, my 2 year old just carries Twinkle Twinkle Scout around by his ear and treats him like Scout's puppy. The blanket is also a fun additional feature; I think it's actually intended to be a cuddle blanket for a baby because it's made from lovely soft fleece and is small enough not to be a suffocation threat, but my daughter uses hers to wrap up Scout. They often play games where they put all their toys to bed, and it's nice that Twinkle Twinkle Scout has his own personal blanket, but having said that I can't actually find his blanket at this moment! Even though the toy is recommended from birth, I think it has the potential to appeal to quite a larger audience, especially if those children are already fans of the Leapfrog toys. I think it's a great toy for a baby because of the soothing music and soft glow from the moon, but it also great for older children too. **Anything Else** They are really well made and pretty robust, my daughter's has been dropped on several occasions, caught under the buggy wheels, and just generally subjected to a lot of (unintentional) abuse, and yet he still works, although looks a bit grubby. You have the option to adjust the volume of Scout by using a little switch which is located in the battery compartment (accessed via a Velcro opening underneath Scout). You can have it on loud or quiet, and to be honest even on loud it's not that intrusive. Twinkle Twinkle Little Scout requires 2 x AAA batteries which come supplied with the unit. Prices vary but they usually hover around the £15 mark, and both Scout and Violet are available from various toy retailers such as Tesco, Mothercare, Amazon and Argos. **Please note that on most online pictures I have seen of Twinkle Twinkle Violet she is shown with a blue blanket, but she actually comes with a pink one - so Violet is more for girls, and Scout with a blue blanket is acceptable for a boy, although my daughter is obviously quite happy with a blue and green toy!***
With a newborn baby we realised that we would suffer from sleepness nights and all the other that everyone had told us to look forward to so when within the first few weeks our baby seemed to struggle in settling to bed my husband decided to purchase this item. Twinkle Twinkle Little Scout is made by Leapfrog and is suitable from birth, he purchased this from Tesco for just under £10 and it is still available at that price to the best of my knowledge. The standard RRP is £14.97 direct from the Leapfrog website but I have also seen it stocked in Mothercare and Toys R Us. Scout is approximately 27cm in length and has a detachable blanket which Alex holds on to as he falls asleep, Scout is a green dog that has a cream chest and mouth and is lovely and cuddly. The blanket that attaches is a baby blue colour and has stars all across it and within the stars are various numbers. Scout has a yellow moon which he lies on and this glows and dims when any of the lullaby functions are used. Around Scout's neck are three buttons which only need to be lightly pressed to operate the functions of Twinkle Twinkle Little Scout. The top button is the green circle containing the power button which operates Scout and when pressed he will make a yawning sound and the moon glows on slowly before fading back out. The middle button is a purple circle containing stars numbered 1,2 and 3. It plays rhymes about counting, plays environmental sounds, Scout also plays a game to help baby recognise Scouts ears, nose and eyes as they get older. As you count with Scout the moon flashes on and off. The bottom button is a blue circle with a clock and a moon. This is the function we used most when Alex was first born as it has the option of selecting 10 minutes or 20 minutes of lullabies and 10 minutes or 20 minutes of environmental sounds. As this function is in operation Scout's moon glows in and out to help soothe baby to sleep and acts as a nightlight when he drops his dummy or we are trying to settle him back in his cot. Scout is not actually machine washable this is because he is battery operated and at the base of Scout hidden behind a velcro fastening is a battery pack which powers Scout. The blanket that Scout sits on is detachable and can be machine washed but to clean any spills you will have to sponge him clean. To replace the batteries you need to unscrew the panel and this will then allow you to replace the 3 x AA batteries which do come with Scout when purchased. *~*Overall Opinion*~* In my opinion this is one of the best presents to buy for a newborn baby. As a lot of gifts we received for the baby were clothes, money and baby toiletries we decided to spend some of his money on something he could play with and begin to interact with. Twinkle Twinkle Little Scout is suitable from Birth up to about 36 months and is reasonably priced for a gift. Alex has had this from about a week old and we do rely on it every night to soothe him to sleep. From about 3 weeks old Alex used to grab onto the blanket as he drifted off to sleep and the soothing light offered him reassurance in a pitch black room. As the light is not too bright is does not disturb us with Alex being in the same room and the lullabies do not play too loud to disturb you if one happens to be asleep in the middle of the night. Another added bonus of this toy is that it has british voices and they also have a range of Scout products to create continuity for your child which I like.