This article is about an educational game series. For other uses, see Jump start.

The current (2007) package of JumpStart Advanced 3rd Grade
Genres Edutainment
Developers Cendant
Publishers Knowledge Adventure
Platforms Windows, Macintosh, Game Boy Color, Playstation, Wii, iPad
First release JumpStart Kindergarten
September 5, 1994

'JumpStart' is an educational media franchise for children, consisting mostly of educational games, produced by Knowledge Adventure. The series is distributed as Jump Ahead in the United Kingdom. It originally consisted of a series of educational PC games, but has expanded to include workbooks, videos, iPad apps, and other media - including, perhaps most significantly, a massively multiplayer online game located at JumpStart.com, first launched March 10, 2009.[1][2]

Release history

The first JumpStart game, JumpStart Kindergarten, was released in 1994. From that time up to 1998, the library was extended to include grades 1-6, as well as JumpStart Baby, Toddlers, and Pre-K. Circa 1997, games based on a particular subject, such as reading and math, were also released. The "Learning Games" series, focused more on arcade gameplay, was also released around this time, featuring JumpStart Spelling, Music, and Numbers. From about 1998-2000, significant updates were made to JumpStart Kindergarten, Preschool, and 1st Grade. In addition, JumpStart Toddlers[3] and 4th Grade received complete revamps, bearing little resemblance to the original versions.

Starting circa 1999, a significant change was brought on in the JumpStart series, under the leadership of their Creative Director Marcela Cabrera,[4] who re-developed the vision of the brand and produced the new visual identity of the software. Several of the characters in the Preschool-2nd Grade portion were given redesigns and merged into a single continuity. This started with the release of two 30-minute animated videos, JumpStart Preschool (occasionally subtitled "Who Left Their Juice on the Caboose?") and JumpStart Kindergarten (occasionally subtitled "Why Did the Bus Stop?"), and two new "Learning Games": JumpStart ABC's and Phonics, which tied into these videos. A separate JumpStart Phonics Learning System was also released at around this time.[5][6] In 2001, each of the original grade-based games began to be repackaged with bonus discs. For example, a newly updated JumpStart Baby received Baby Book,[7] and JumpStart Toddlers received My Learning Scrapbook.[8] The JumpStart workbook series and the JumpStart Readers series were published by Scholastic circa 2001. Both series contained entries for Pre-K, Kindergarten, 1st Grade, and 2nd Grade. In 2001, the "Early Discovery" series was launched. It included JumpStart Artist (which taught various aspects of art), Languages (which taught Spanish, French, and Japanese), Explorers (which taught various subjects, mostly history), and Animal Adventures (which taught zoology). The JumpStart Spy Masters series, aimed at older children, was also released. In 2002, The JumpStart Advanced series was released for grades PreK - 2. The series featured updated challenges and included a new feature, called the All-Star, that players could use to get help from various characters when needed. In 2003, the Advanced label was adopted by the entirety of the series, and each game was released in a three-disc pack with two related games. Also in 2003, a new series, "JumpStart Study Helpers", was released. The two games, JumpStart Study Helpers Math Booster and Spelling Bee, were notable for allowing users to edit the math problems or words used in gameplay.[9][10]

In 2005, JumpStart Reading with Karaoke (later renamed JumpStart Phonics Read & Rhyme)[11]) was released. It featured a new continuity with new (and in the case of several of the characters, very different) character designs. In the middle of 2006, the JumpStart World (later renamed JumpStart 3D Virtual World) brand was released, with three new games for grades K-2.[12][13][14][15] These games featured online features, and were set in a three dimensional world. The games themselves contained two "play units" with installation; users could obtain more with an $8/month membership. Also around this time, the JumpStart Advanced series was rereleased in new four-disc sets, with some of the new discs containing some JumpStart World-esque activities. Circa 2006, a factory error caused some of these packages to contain a different game in place of the Fundamentals game. In 2008, the JumpStart World products were updated into new JumpStart Advanced Premium packages, which included a brand-new Preschool title.[16][17] The new packages received criticism for not clarifying that a subscription was required for additional content. On December 1, 2008, a JumpStart massively multiplayer online game, which would go on to become the series' main product, was announced.[18] It was launched on March 10, 2009, with two worlds: StoryLand and AdventureLand.[19] This game, geared for ages 3–10, features customizable avatars called "Jumpeez". Many other areas have since been added, such as MarineLand and FutureLand.[20] The JumpStart.com MMOG, similar to its predecessor JumpStart World, features an $8/month membership. It is not necessary to play the game, but it is necessary in order to access certain features. Starting in 2012, JumpStart began releasing products (including features in their online game and apps) that featured DreamWorks Animation properties, such as Madagascar and How to Train Your Dragon.

Although JumpStart was originally a series of personal computer games, other educational products have been produced under the JumpStart name. For example, a large collection of books (with the majority being workbooks) have been created by a cooperative effort between Knowledge Adventure and Scholastic.[21] They have been manufactured for 4 grade levels: Pre-K, Kindergarten, first grade, and second grade. The workbooks feature characters from the particular grade level, though another kind of JumpStart book, "JumpStart Readers" (storybooks intended to teach reading skills) sometimes feature characters from other grade levels. The workbooks also feature a sticker reward system and offer "tips".

There have also been multiple JumpStart games produced for systems other than the PC and Mac; JumpStart Dino Adventure for the Game Boy Color, JumpStart Wildlife Safari for the PlayStation and three JumpStart Wii games; JumpStart Pet Rescue, JumpStart: Escape from Adventure Island, and JumpStart Get Moving Family Fitness. 4 JumpStart DVD games (JumpStart Frankie's Field Trip,[22] JumpStart Power Prep 2nd Grade, JumpStart Power Prep 3rd Grade and JumpStart Power Prep 4th Grade), known as "iDVDs", have also been made by Knowledge Adventure. Several JumpStart apps for the iPad (some of which can also be played on the iPhone) have been created - JumpStart Preschool: Magic of Learning,[23] JumpStart Punk Punk Blitz,[24] JumpStart Jetpack,[25] JumpStart My ABC Book,[26] JumpStart Art Studio,[27] and JumpStart Roller Squash.[28] JumpStart Preschool: Magic of Learning received critical acclaim[29] and was also published for Windows Phone.[30][31] A few JumpStart toys have also been produced. In March 2014, it was announced that JumpStart had purchased Neopets from Viacom. On March 9 2015, JumpStart announced the laying off of a large number of long time Neopets and JumpStart staff members. This news was following a long period of site troubles after moving to a new server.

Commercal performance

Jumpstart First Grade (3rd), Jumpstart Third Grade (4th), Jumpstart Second Grade (5th), Jumpstart Kindergarten II (6th), Jumpstart Preschool (7th), Jumpstart Fourth Grade (8th), Jumpstart Toddlers were within the top-selling educational software across 13 U.S. software retail chains in the week ending September 19, 1998.[32] Jumpstart Preschool (2nd), Jumpstart First Grade (3rd), Jumpstart Kindergarten (7th), and Jumpstart Second Grade (8th) were among the top-selling home-education software across 13 software retail chains in the week ending May 1, 1999.[33]

Critical reception

Since JumpStart purchased Neopets the user complaints regarding customer service have skyrocketed. A site-wide password reset attributed to site security took place in early 2016 and many users have been indefinitely locked out of their accounts. Pleas for account access have been widely ignored.

List of titles

Original series

Games marked with an asterisk underwent revisions from 1994-1998.

JumpStart Advanced series

JumpStart 3D Virtual World

Bonus discs

These were packaged with the given game(s) from 2000-2005.

Learning Games


These games were originally referred to as "JumpStart (grade) Reading".


These games were originally referred to as "JumpStart (grade) Math".

Early Discovery games

Jump Start Spy Masters

Other games

See also


  1. "Virtual World Games for Kids - Online 3D Virtual World – JumpStart". Jumpstart.com. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  2. Seiler, Joey. "JumpStart Passes 15 Million Session, Now Going Live".
  3. "DiscoverySchool.com - Review Corner". School.discoveryeducation.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  4. http://www.linkedin.com/in/marcelacabrera/
  5. "DiscoverySchool.com - Review Corner". School.discoveryeducation.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  6. "SuperKids Software Review of Jump Start Phonics". Superkids.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  7. "DiscoverySchool.com - Review Corner". School.discoveryeducation.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  8. "JumpStart Toddlers and My Learning Scrapbook: Software". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  9. "JumpStart Study Helpers Math Booster Game Review". Commonsensemedia.org. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  10. "JumpStart Study Helpers Spelling Bee Game Review". M.commonsensemedia.org. 2003-08-15. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  11. "Jumpstart Phonics - Read & Rhyme: Knowledge Adventure: Software". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  12. "JumpStart World Kindergarten: Software". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  13. "The Toy Man Award of Excellence 2008 - 3D Virtual World for Kids". JumpStart. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  14. "JumpStart World 1st Grade: Software". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  15. "JumpStart World 2nd Grade: Software". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  16. "iParenting Media Awards - Outstanding Product 2008". JumpStart. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  17. "Launches First 3D Virtual World for Preschoolers". JumpStart. 2008-05-12. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  18. "Knowledge Adventure Announces Launch of JumpStart Virtual World". JumpStart. 2008-12-01. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  19. "Knowledge Adventure Announces Live Launch of JumpStart.com". JumpStart. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  20. "JumpStart.com Launches MarineLand for 5-9 Year Olds". JumpStart. 2009-10-02. Retrieved 2014-04-10.
  21. "JumpStart Kindergarten by Liane Onish, Camilla Franck, Maggie Groening". Scholastic.com. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
  22. cuttiebug52teen, 18 years old (2006-08-07). "JumpStart Frankie's Field Trip PreK-1st - Video Game Review". Commonsensemedia.org. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  23. "App Store - JumpStart Preschool Magic of Learning". Itunes.apple.com. 2012-03-01. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  24. "App Store - JumpStart Punk Punk Blitz". Itunes.apple.com. 2011-08-27. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  25. "JumpStart Jetpack for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad on the iTunes App Store". Itunes.apple.com. 2012-01-12. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  26. "JumpStart My ABC Book for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad on the iTunes App Store". Itunes.apple.com. 2011-07-06. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  27. "JumpStart Art Studio for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad on the iTunes App Store". Itunes.apple.com. 2011-08-05. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  28. "JumpStart Roller Squash for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad on the iTunes App Store". Itunes.apple.com. 2011-05-18. Retrieved 2012-03-23.
  29. "JumpStart Preschool Magic of Learning Review. An app for 3 year olds for iPhone/iPod touch (iPad compatible)". Appysmarts.com. 2011-12-03. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
  30. "JumpStart Preschool | Windows Phone Apps+Games Store (United States)". Windowsphone.com. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
  31. "JumpStart Preschool - Windows Phone Review. An app for 3 year olds for Windows Phone". Appysmarts.com. 2012-05-04. Retrieved 2013-08-11.
  32. "BESTSELLERS". 1998-10-05.
  33. "Bestsellers". 1999-05-17.

External links

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