24 answers

What Is the Right Age to Get a Nintendo DS??

My 5 1/2 year old is asking for a Nintendo DS for Christmas this year. He says all the kids on the bus have them and play the on the bus. He has had a hard time riding the bus because he does have a longer ride (I think - about 40 min each way)

So my question is: Do we get him a DS for Christmas or is that a little bit too old for him. I have never been one to buy a Nintendo Wii or Playstation, etc. I never had them when I was growing up, but I know in this day it seems all kids have them. We would of course limit the time/use of it if he did get one.

I have no clue about these things, about what games they come with etc. I haven't researched them yet. Just thought I would get an idea if it is worth my time to research unless all of you wonderful mommies out there say nope he is too young!


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Featured Answers

I have a DS that is now more my daughter's than mine. She will be 3 in February. She loves Dora the Explorer, so my mom bought her a Dora DS game. She loves it. She has no problem playing it. There are games out there for younger kids. She has a game that is for three year olds.

My nephew got one for Christmas at 6 years old and he loved it! He still has it and is now 7. He is also excelling in all subjects at school. hope this helps!

Most kids get a DS between the ages of 5-7 I've noticed.

My dd got hers for her 7th birthday but because of how exspensive it was we are strict with it. She has to keep the games and parts all in a shoe box and it cannot leave the house without permission. She can bring it to her grandparents house or in the car.

She CANNOT bring it on the bus or to school no way never.

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Both of my children (5 & 7) have a DS and I would never dream of letting either of them bring theirs to school much less on the bus. Also, there are potential health hazards to excess play on the DS so we don't allow more than 15 minutes of play at a time. The DS in our home is only used as a reward and for long road trips. We keep the DS machines and the additional games in a drawer we call the "DS drawer". They cost us a pretty penny so we don't ever allow the kids to bring them to school or on the bus. A blank notebook and some cool pencils are the way to go for the busride, in my opinion.

1 mom found this helpful

my kids are 8 and 10, and we are getting them for x-mas. I would worry about taking it on the bus though... my daughter has had many items stolen from her backpack during the school day... nothing expensive thank god.

1 mom found this helpful

Our daughter got one as a Christmas gift last year. She was 7. Since then, I would say she has gotten addicted and has lost interest in playing outside. All she wants to do is play that DS. Not saying it would happen to anyone else this way, just our experience. I never grew up with game systems and didn't want her to have one. Right now she's grounded from it for 2 weeks.

1 mom found this helpful


When my kids say that "all the kids have" something, I ask them to start naming names. When they give me an honest count, it's really about 10-20% of the kids, not "all." Our kids got a Wii for Christmas a couple years ago and it's perfect for winters when it gets dark early and too cold to be out for hours at a time. We have a time limit that they can play AFTER all their chores are done. There are games that the kids can play together and they are up and moving, not sitting and playing in isolation.

Personally, I wouldn't let my kids take anything to play on the bus. That's their time to socialize, enjoy the scenery, etc. I am sure that at least half the kids on that bus don't have a DS, but your son envies the ones who do. My kindergarten daughter had a bus ride home that was over an hour. I felt like it was good for her to entertain herself. When kids are given nonstop entertainment, it shows up in their attitude, respect level, attention and focusing capabilities, etc. You shouldn't ever feel pressured to do something just because "everyone" is doing it.


1 mom found this helpful

i never bought these games for my kids when they were growing up...have him read on the bus or do word puzzles-im not against video games-but i do think there more positive alternates....

From preschool until my sister turned 16 we had to ride the bus for an hour EACH WAY. I would read, sleep, socialize, and play those hand/song games with kids.

When I was in 6th grade (12 years old) I brought a basketball to school and that was stolen- right from my locker. I would NOT let him bring an expensive gaming system to school. It would be gone with in a week! And I'd bet that at 5 1/2 they do NOT have locked lockers.....

As for getting him one just to have at home. That is truely up to you and your husband on what you would like to expose him to. My husband and I have decided NOT to buy our kids any gaming systems. If it's in the house, the kids will coninue to ask for more time. If you don't have one, there is no arguement..... My husbands 2 nephews have had gaming systems since they were about 5 and they are horribly addicted. If they are not watching tv or playing their systems, they are on the computer.... I've NEVER seen them go outside just to play. Electronics can be addicting.... So you do need to keep that in mind when considering adding this to your family.

We got our oldest son a DS for Christmas one year when he was 5 years old. I think it's fine, as far as being age-appropriate. The Nintendo products, in my opinion, have the most games for the younger set, completely non-violent, etc.

We limited the time he spent on it, but most of the time I honestly didn't have to worry about it. He was such an active little kid, loved being outdoors, etc. Mostly I just kept on eye on it and on occasion had to put an end to "video game time" on a given day. Wasn't a big problem for us.

I would check and make sure he's really supposed to be playing a DS on the bus. I'm pretty sure those types of things are off-limits for kids in our school district. Pretty much, they aren't supposed to have anything on the bus that they shouldn't have at school. Also, I would consider the possibility that it might be stolen in a situation like that (I'm assuming it's going to be sitting in his backpack at school all day).


My nephew got one for Christmas at 6 years old and he loved it! He still has it and is now 7. He is also excelling in all subjects at school. hope this helps!

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