As we begin to close in on the end of the school year, we are spending a bit more time at home than we're used to. Most of the programs that I volunteer with, and involve my son in, have ended for the year. Some of the afternoon programs we attended kept us busy and engaged through out the school year, and made our time spent at home more enjoyable, too. During the 'off months,' I find myself having to plan extra activities, to keep my son busy, and from getting into things around the house. He's a bit ahead of other children his age, and becomes bored, if he isn't challenged enough. This is both a blessing, and at times, frustrating for me, as I look for appropriate activities that will pique his interest.
I'm thankful for amazingly creative learning toys. They are sanity savers for me! One of my favorite toy companies happens to be The Manhattan Toy Company.The Manhattan Toy Company has been around since 1982, when it was founded by Francis Goldwyn. The neat thing about The Manhattan Toy Company, is that they were leaders in introducing toys that consist of non-traditional fabrics in their toys, as well as new designs for soft toys. Manhattan Toy knows the value in play time. After all, it's how children learn from early on in their lives, and playtime plays an important role in their development. It's always been my belief that playing with and reading to your children are two of the most important things you can do as a parent, and it's wonderful to see a toy company that holds fast to those same beliefs.
I was excited to learn that Manhattan Toy, who has several brands of fantastic toys under their umbrella, was adding some brand new play kits to their award-winning Imagine I Can line. We first had the pleasure of reviewing the Imagine I Can kits around the holidays last year, and we were so pleased. You can check out our previous experience with the Imagine I Can line, here. We were able to select one of the new releases to try out and enjoy at home!
A special package has arrived for B, from Manhattan Toy!
It didn't take much for B to realize that the box that arrived was meant for him! One glance at the whimsical Manhattan Toy logo gave it right away! B couldn't wait to see what type of toy or activity the box would reveal! We sat down together, and carefully opened up the package to find a brand new Imagine I Can Travel Time Play Kit, for ages 3+.
'Check this out, everyone! Looks totally cooler than cool!' (B's words, not mine!)
The Imagine I Can Travel Time Play Kit came packaged in a brightly colored sleeve, with photos of the play kit, and information from parents... like the kit contains a whopping 104 pieces! Can you imagine? B was so excited by the photo covering the actual play kit, that he just wanted to sit and look at it for a while. After I finally coerced him to allow us to remove the sleeve, we uncovered the play kit tin! I think it is so neat that the Imagine I Can play kits come packaged in little tins with handles and hinges! That's definitely thinking outside of the 'box!'
Here's what the Travel Time play kit tin looks like. Bright, colorful, and quite imaginative!
After seeing the tin, B was absolutely hungry to see what it contained, so we opened it up and found four different scenes printed on paper, as well as a set of magnets in all sort of shapes and sizes! One small tear into the bag (by daddy), and the magnets were spread out all over the floor in front of us! What an assortment!
Here's the inside of the play kit tin, with the magnets still in their packaging, and the printed play scenes.
B, happily sorting through all of the different shapes. Triangles over to one side, circles to another.
The idea of the Travel Time play kit from Imagine I Can, is to place a scene on either side of the inside of the tin. The paper is cut to fit inside of the tin with ease. After selecting your scene (space, ocean, farm, or construction site), use the magnets to create different vehicles, or what-have-you, on top of the paper scene. The magnets actually hold the paper scene to the tin play kit, just as a magnet would hold your child's artwork on the refrigerator. Since there are so many magnet pieces included in the kit, in various shapes, colors, and sizes, the possibilities of what you can create from them, are endless!
Quality time- daddy and B, working on their space ships and boats.
The paper scenes in this kit are vibrant and fun- each one opening up endless possibilities for fun and adventure!
One of the many wonderful things about the Imagine I Can play kits, is that children can use and enjoy the kits by themselves. They really don't need much supervision with these. B truly enjoys bringing this kit out from his room, all by himself, opening it up near wherever I happen to be, and then playing quietly while I work, read, etc. I know that the ability to do this on his own, gives him a sense of independence, and makes me awfully proud of him, as well.
Great for alone time play, or side by side play with a parent or friend!
The Travel Time play kit is a winner in B & daddy's books!
Just as my husband has enjoyed bonding with B while playing with the Travel Time play kit together, I have enjoyed the same. The kit has been a wonderful addition to my resources for creative play while we home school for Pre-K. It can be hard to find activities that will keep a three-year-old engaged for more than ten minutes. When B sat down to explore the kit for the first time, he worked with it for almost an hour. Since then, he's played and created with it for at least thirty minutes at a time, each and every time! We've been able to use it alongside some our our lessons, as we've learned about submarines, astronauts, and even as we took a trip down memory lane, and I told B stories of my late grandparents, who were farmers.
Getting creative with mommy... let's make a submarine!
Another huge plus to this awesome magnetic activity kit, is that it's totally shareable. If you have two children, they can happily work and play side by side, just as B and I did. This is a wonderful toy for siblings or friends to share, and though it's geared toward younger children, it's not limited to just the little ones. Older children and adults will enjoy this creative play set, as much as a 3-5 year-old will. I could definitely see B and his cousin C, who is ten years old, enjoying this set together.
Here, B is pointing out the different shapes used to make the vehicle we created.
When play time is over, the contents of the kit can easily be places back into the tin. The tin is then closed, and can be easily carried by the child, to be put away. This is the perfect activity to send along with a child to a friend's house, or relative's house. It encourages quiet play time, or together playtime, with a friend or loved one. B has enjoyed introducing his grandparents to this wonderful kit, and they've all had a hand in helping him create special scenes, and lasting memories.
Details of the Imagine I Can Travel Time Play Kit
Create endless combinations of transportation vehicles and scenes.. Includes 104 magnetic pieces and 4 paper background scenes. Place a background scene on inside of tin, then place magnetic pieces on scene to create and play. Tin case with handle allows for easy storage and portability. Ages 3+
We have already enjoyed countless hours of fun and learning together, thanks to another winning Imagine I Can play kit by Manhattan Toy. These are stimulating toys that I feel good about my son spending time with. I know that Manhattan Toy has a commitment to quality and safety, which makes me feel even better! I appreciate a toy company willing to go the extra mile to keep our children safe.
Imagine I Can has released a whole series of fantastic new magnetic activity kits!
Take a look at some of the other kits by Imagine I Can...
Character Mix Up
Notes N' Stuff
It's easy to see why the Imagine I Can sets have won so many awards, and have received a phenomenal amount of praise from the media. I'm not the only one who thinks these wonderfully creative activity kits are brag-worthy, and worth adding to your classroom, or to your child's personal toy collection. If you have a little one graduating from Pre-K or Kindergarten this spring, this would make an adorable gift for their graduation, or would make a special birthday gift! Heading on a family vacation this summer? Keep your little one entertained on the go with one of these must-have magnetic activity kits!
Want It? Buy It!
Head on over to Manhattan Toy to browse even more Imagine I Can products! I guarantee that you will love what you find there! You can also stay up to date with what's new from Manhattan Toy, by connecting with them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube!
Want It? Win It!
One lucky MBP reader will win their choice of an Imagine I Can Magnetic Play Kit! Choose from Travel Time, Fashion Friends, or Character Mix-Up! Just use the handy dandy Rafflecopter entry form below to enter for your chance to win! Giveaway is open to US residents, 18 and older.
Special thanks to Manhattan Toy for allowing us to have fun with and learn by playing with another one of their magnificent play kits, and for offering our readers the chance to win one, as well!