In hot weather, you can’t beat a water fight! My kids are all crazy about water blasters, water balloons and anything that allows them to get themselves and everyone else completely soaking! So luckily the weather has been nice lately, to allow for lots of fun water activities in the garden.
We have been trying out a few new products from Zuru, which have been so much fun.
Learning Resources is my go-to company for home learning materials, as they have so many fun products to help with all kinds of areas of learning. We were sent a couple of products to help out with our home learning during the school closures, and these have been really useful along side other Learning Resources toys and games that we already have stocked in our playroom.
Sight Word Swat
This is a great game that can be used to help young readers, whether they have only learned a few sight words or are starting to get quite confident at reading. N is 3 years old and already knows a few words, so this is a fun way to review those with her and introduce more words to her in a fun and casual way. Not all of the words included are “tricky words” there are also words which can be sounded out phonetically, like “can” so we can also use these type of words for phonics practise, to have a go at reading the letters and blending them together to read the word.
One of the best ways to keep the whole family entertained and having fun together is with games. We have been playing a lot of board games lately, and recently were sent a package of four great games from Spin Master, with something for all ages.
I find that whipping out a game is a brilliant way to lift the mood in the house, banish boredom and reconnect with the kids in a fun way. They’re also ideal to pass the time if we are stuck inside due to bad weather.
This selection of games from Spin Master has something for everyone, with puzzling strategy from Otrio, hilarity from Hedbanz, Jumanji for those of us who have enjoyed the movies (Whether that’s the newer remakes that our kids enjoyed, or the original we remember from our childhood!) and even Baby Shark for the youngest of the family.
Jumanji: The Next Level
The Jumanji game is great for older kids, of around 8 years and up. My boys are 8, 10 and 11 and enjoyed this game. They found it quick to get into and quite easy to understand. In the game, you race to collect your 6 tokens to be the winner, and this is done by using action cards to do things such as battling animals. In some of these things, you need to collaborate with your fellow players, and during the game you can play as different characters from the movie – each with different powers!
There is also a Jumanji Classic Retro board game available from Spin Master Games which is a different version, and has a slightly lower age recommendation.
The Science Mad Chemistry Lab set for ages 10 and up is a great way for kids to learn at home. With over 80 experiments included in this set, there is a lot to work through and completing these experiments will give your child a great foundation in chemistry. The set includes good quality equipment, and a fully comprehensive instruction manual which guides you through each experiment in terms of what to do but also in what exactly you will be learning from each one.
The set includes plenty of chemicals, and the basic equipment required such as a burner, test tubes, test tube holder, pipettes and more. However, there are also a fair amount of ingredients and chemicals which you will need to buy separately. This is because they would be dangerous to include within the packaging (such as methylated spirit for the burner), so this is understandable although at first was a little frustrating as there were certain experiments we weren’t able to jump straight into due to this. You can get around this by planning ahead, and there are still plenty of experiments that you can do just with the chemicals and supplies included within the set.
BABY Born My First Swim Doll is a 30cm doll who is so cute, and makes a brilliant companion for little ones learning to swim. My 3 year old N has had lots of fun playing with this doll in the bath, and she is also great for the paddling pool. You could even take her to the swimming pool once they are open, whether you’re splashing around on holiday or going for first swimming lessons at your local pool.
The BABY born My First Swim Girl doll works by winding her arms back, and then releasing her into the water to watch her swim. This means no batteries are required, as the swimming movement is powered just by the winding – much easier and safer in the water. The doll is well made, has plenty of detail, and seems like it will last really well.
Osmo is a great way to make screen time a lot more hands on, and allow kids to get more out of using their iPads (or fire tablets). We were sent the Creative Starter Kit to try out with the kids and it’s a great tool for the times we are in right now with school closures, and parents needing to find ways to keep children occupied, and their minds active.
The Osmo creative starter set includes an Osmo base, which you can use with any Osmo games if you expand your collection further (there are lots available!) and a creative board with a set of four dry wipe pens and a pencil case to keep them in – which also functions as a wipe cloth for the board.
We have been having so much fun with UltraDash over the past few days. It is an ideal game for keeping active in the garden or inside the house, so it’s perfect for these crazy times we find ourselves in at the moment!
The aim of the game with UItraDash is to race between coloured targets, as directed by the flashing lights on the handheld tagger, and then quickly tag each one – aiming to beat each other’s speed, or beat your own personal best.
The game takes very little time to set up, once you have added batteries, you can pull this out any time and get going straight away. It’s brilliant for those moments when the kids are restless and just need a good run around to use up some energy and re-set everyone’s moods, and we’ve found it’s just as much fun for the adults as for the kids!!
You can’t beat a good puzzle, and the kids and I have been having fun with a new range of Discovery Dinosaur puzzles each with 150 pieces.
These Dinosaur Puzzles, made by Kidicraft, are from the Discovery range of 3D effect puzzles which are manufactured using new Prime 3D lenses to give greater depth and motion to the images.
The 3D style really is effective, they felt as if the dinosaurs were really coming out of the jigsaws! And it also adds a little more challenge to completing the puzzles as it’s a style we haven’t tried before.
You may remember our post a few months ago about the TV series 44 Cats. If your children are fans of the show, you will be pleased to know that there is now a range of 44 Cats toys available to go along with the show! These new toys are available from retailers including Argos and The Entertainer.
The range includes musical plush characters, as well as smaller Buffycats figurines including colour change ones!
We were sent a couple of the new 44 Cats toys for N (Age 3) to try out at home.
44 Cats Musical Plush Toy – Milady
The Milady musical plush toy is very cute and soft, with easy to activate sound effects when you press her body. She plays a catchy song from the TV series.
N loved the musical Milady straight away as she is perfect to snuggle up to.
Our board game collection is definitely coming in handy at the moment with the current lock down due to Covid19. They are a great way to pass the time as a family, and often keep the kids thinking so help to keep their brains sharp while there is no school. The latest new board game that we tried out was another from the Asmodee Blogger Board Game Club – Colt Express.
Colt Express is a railway and bandit themed game, featuring a 3d train. The aim of the game is to become the richest bandit in the Wild West, by getting more loot than the other players but without being hit by too many bullets!
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