Words… To Go! from Texas Instruments (1990)

Company: Texas Instruments | Release date: 1990 | Where to purchase: eBay

“The go anywhere way to practice reading!”

Released in 1990 from Texas Instruments, Words… To Go! was an educational toy that aimed to develop pre-reading skills in children ages 3-6. The red handheld device powered by 2 AA batteries combined a tiny LCD with a miniature keyboard. The “to go” aspect was thanks to a large handle built into the top of the device and built-in storage.

Words… To Go! activities were made possible with one of 10 double-sided word/picture cards that slid over the top of the keyboard. The 20 activities were numerically coded and covered 7 progressively more comprehensive pre-reading skills, including letter recognition, letter sequencing, rhyming words, and matching. Correct answers were rewarded with music and an animated display on the LCD.

In addition to Words… To Go!, Texas Instruments developed 2 other To Go products. Time… To Go! helped develop time-telling skills, while Math… To Go! focused on the development of equation solving, math tables, and critical thinking.

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