On September 6, LeapFrog is launching LeapBand, a wearable activity tracker designed just for kids. While their parents versions offer data as payout, the kids version involves the nurturing of a personalized virtual pet.
The concept is simple, the more active the child is, the more points they will earn. More points unlock additional challenges. (There are 50 in all.) And the points also buy virtual rewards for their on-screen pets.
The spokesperson for the effort is soccer star Mia Hamm -- mother of three. September 6 has been dubbed "Fit Made Fun Day," and the kick-off will begin with an event in Santa Monica, CA for 300+ kids. (Irwin, 2014)
I love it. Kids love to copy their parents -- there's a funny email going around now with adorable pics to prove it. And, the interactive nature of the program bodes well for its success. It reminds me of the Verb campaign from the CDC, which encouraged tweens to play with a ball, blog about it, and then pass it along to someone else to play with. That campaign, which showed signs of success, was discontinued in 2010 after funding ran out. You can read more about it here.
So, I have high hopes that a program like this could play an important part in addressing the obesity crisis. Why don't you get your favorite kids a band and let's give it a shot.
Irwin, T. (2014, August 21) LeapFrog, Mia Hamm Partner To Get Kids Active. mediapost.com. Retrieved August 22, 2014, fromhttp://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/232515/leapfrog-mia-hamm-partner-to-get-kids-active.html?edition=75540