Age range 3 years thru 12 years
Toy Type ES FP LA MM PL SW TC TY Piccoli Horses unique approach to introduce preschool and kindergarten children to the fun of foreign languages is to get children to learn little words in different languages by moving their bodies. Piccoli Horses has an answer: use technology to help children move their bodies and speak out loud. Piccoli Horses consists of a plush horse and a learning app, available on Apple or Android devices. Piccoli introduces the child to a beautiful, soft, plush horsewith no electronic features. The horse becomes one of the child’s best friends. The horse is designed to complement the app, but the two do not have to go together. (Children of all ages love the classic stuffed animal.) The app uses a cartoon version of the horse to prompt the child to guide the child to each next screen. For instance, in the English Piccoli Zoo app, the child sees a bear walking and hears the words, “bear walk.” The child repeats the words aloud, “bear, walk.” Then the child sees a photo of a child walking like the bear. Then the child is encouraged to walk like the bear. All the time the child plays the game, the plush horse is right there, offering a loving connection to the here and now. Kids learn little words in different languages (currently English and French), move their bodies and learn better.
“The experts know that children learn better when they move their bodies,” said Kimberly Rogers, Founder and CEO of Piccoli Horses. “In our electronic age, kids have stopped moving, and so it is difficult for their brains to stay open to new languages.” Rogers began the journey leading to the creation of Piccoli Horses years ago to help her son. Dylan had gradual onset hydrocephalus, which left him unable to speak. “English, his native language, is a foreign language for your son,” Doctors explained. Rogers wouldn’t accept the diagnosis that because he missed the “receptive language years” (the years between birth and age 5 when a child is naturally receptive/open to acquiring language), he might never talk. She set out to help him. She contacted the experts. Speech pathologists explained to her Dylan must first learn to play before language would develop. She learned that children have to stay engaged in physical play to learn, despite the tendency to learn from a digital screen. Rogers started Piccoli, a technology-based toy company, which creates beautiful plush toys and revolutionary educational apps, to maximize a child’s love of learning languages. Piccoli Horses is headquartered in Kentucky. The toy saddles are handmade in Kentucky from discontinued fabric swatches. The plush horses are made in Gold-Standard factories in China and all toys have been tested and meet or exceed US and EU safety standards. The educational apps were created with the help of designers and developers based in New Zealand. All packing material are eco-friendly and made in the US from 100% recycled products. Piccoli is a a global boutique woman-owned business.