Sunday, August 2, 2009

Child's Play

New favorite store (for all things therapy/education related and so much more!)

The Learning Express, The Avenue at Web Ginn
My mother-in-law and I had a blast playing with this incredible creation:

Rokenbok. Our favorite piece was the Ball and Chute System. We marveled at the geniuses who came up with this crazy invention. We also played like 5 year olds when no one was looking. The motorized conveyors were fascinating!

Thankfully I was quickly distracted by...POP UP PIRATE! Yesss! Totally on my therapy toy wish-list and totally have not been able to find it anywhere. Needless to say, it came home with me :)

(Insert side note: Admittedly, I am addicted to buying toys/games for therapy. Confession: I have not bought ONE single work-related item since April when I caved and bought my own copy of "Guess Who". So there.)

Hubs didn't quite seem to understand my excitement...that is, until we played a round in the interest of "lesson plan preparation". He won. Twice.

Pros: super fun, catch-you-off-guard kind of excitement (when will the pirate pop up, nobody knows!); 4 color coded mini sword sets for multi-person playing capabilities; fabulous artic and language goals built right in (prepositions "in/out", "up/down", same/different, loads of /p/'s and final consonants...); easy set-up/break-down; flexibility of "rules"...are you considered the winner when Pop Up Pirate pops up or if he does not pop up be the judge.

Cons: whoa. Pop Up Pirate jumps so high that he might just put your eye out (this could arguably be listed as a pro in my mind); lack of predictability (sometimes Pop Up Pirate popped after a measly 2 swords, other times he didn't pop until 20 of the plastic swords were crammed in his barrel...while this is obviously the point of the game, it can make maintaining a 4 year old's attention a bit difficult if the motivation factor makes itself known after 30 seconds of structured play); self-applied sticker decor can be tricky to apply.

Overall fun-o-meter: 8.5/10

Have I mentioned how marvelous it is that I get paid to play for a living!?

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