Keeping children entertained and engaged during the summer months can be tricky. For us, we try to keep up with summer learning routine, as we work on Preschool prep with B, who is three years old. Our family is sort of all over the place during the summer months. We have a few little mini trips planned, a family vacation planned, and then we have other activities that will be keeping us busy, like Vacation Bible School, etc. Sticking to a schedule sometimes doesn't seem possible, which is why it's helpful to me, to have some fun and educational products to have fun and learn with during the summer months.
When we were given the opportunity to work with Oriental Trading Company, I was thrilled. I am a long time fan of their products, which are used everywhere from churches to classrooms and in the home, as well as other places. Oriental Trading offers fun, affordably priced party supplies, home decor, educational products, craft supplies, and more! They are based in Omaha, Nebraska, and have been around since 1932! Oriental Trading Co. was one of the very first companies to offer value priced novelty products, and has been recognized as one of the Top 50 Internet Retailers, and one of the Top 50 Catalog Companies!
We received a big box of goodies to use for our summer projects, and for me to incorporate into our summer learning plans. So many colorful products!
B couldn't wait to see what was in the box!
It was extremely hard for me to narrow down what to select from Oriental Trading Company, as they have hundreds of great products! As I poured over their colorful website, I found myself gravitating toward some of the indoor/outdoor activities, and some of the summer themed craft kits and projects. My goal was to select a good mix of items that were fun, would spark a bit of creativity, would fall in line with some of our sumemrtime lessons, and would be great for outdoor fun and learning.
One of the first items I chose: Pop Up Golf Game
I selected the Pop Up Golf Game as a fun indoor/outdoor activity for B. At three years old, this is a great game to keep him entertained, as well as to help him work on his hand/eye coordination. The golf game is made of nylon, and is on a thin frame, which easily bends for quick pop-up set up, and folds quickly and easily when it's ready to be put away.
'What is this, mommy? Is this a fun game for me?'
B was so excited to the see the golf game laid out on the floor. The day our goodies arrived from Oriental Trading Co., it was raining, but I told B that we could set the golf game up inside of the house, if we were careful with the balls. Sometimes I really wish we had a partially finished basement!
The Golf Game came packaged in a colorful box, and came with a nylon carry bag for easy storage and portability.
B immediately unzipped the bag, and discovered the four lightweight plastic golf balls. He was all smiles as he counted them, and then waited patiently for me to get the game frame set up.
'Four balls to toss! Oh, boy!'
The frame for the pop up Golf Game is super leightweight, easy to carry and move around. I set it up in less than 60 seconds. There is a flap at the bottom, which connects to the back 'wall' of the game frame, and once they're connected, it keeps the golf game sitting upright. It stands on its own, and can easily be moved, once set up. It can fold flat for storage, or it can be folded and twisted back up to fit back inside of the nylon zip and carry bag.
The Golf game frame, laid out (face down) on the floor. It was super easy to push the bottom into place, connect it to the back with the Velcro strip, and then stand it up.
The golf game all set up, and ready to be played!
The Golf Game is a lot of fun! It's sort of like a bean bag toss game, with little golf balls. There are five holes for the players to try to toss the balls through, each one offering a different number of points. There are three slots for the balls to come back through, and there is a strip of nylon to catch the balls as they are returned. The golf game has fun golf terms on the pop up frame, like Par, Hole in One, and Bogey.
B had a blast playing with this golf game! We have played with it inside, outside, a number of times, and he has asked just about every member of our family to play it with him when they've been over to our house. We'll be sharing this game with our friends at church for Vacation Bible School this summer, and I have a feeling that we'll be taking it with us on our little weekend trips, our vacation, and setting it up when we get together with family for cookouts, and such! It's a great game to have if you have children, if you entertain during the summer, or if you volunteer with kids- any time of the year! My goal is to keep this item properly stored when not in use, so that we can use it over and over again for many years to come!
Another fun outdoor toy we received, a Rocket Launcher!
B has really become fascinated with space and astronauts lately, so we have been doing some fun learning activities at home, and watching some educational videos, to give hi an idea of what it looks like for people to go into space! He's already told me that he would love to be an astronaught one day! B is really still a bit too young for a lot of rocket toys, but Oriental Trading Co.'s Rocket Launcher is just the right size for him, and it's safe for him to use.
Daddy gave B a hand with the rocket launcher for the first few times, and once B got the hang of it, he was good to go!
Once B got the hang of how to use the launcher, he was launching the rocket without much help.
The rocket launcher comes in three pieces- two of them being plastic (for the launcher), and then the rocket is made of soft foam. Basically, you put the launcher together, and then insert the tip of the launcher into the hole at the base of the foam rocket. Simply pull back on the launch cylinder, quickly push it in, and watch the rocket fly off into the air!
Take a look at our first rocket launch...
B loves this toy! He and his daddu have certainly been having a 'blast' with it! We have to be careful, however, and make sure that we're not using it in a strong wind, which could carry the rocket away. Just remember that it is made of foam, and is extremely lightweight. We're also sure to put the rocket away when we're done playing with it. We don't want it to become yucky from sitting out in the rain. I know that we'll be having lots of fun with the rocket launcher all summer long! I am thankful that the rocket is made of foam, and is safe to play with!
We also received this wonderful 11-piece bubble wand assortment!
To add to our summer fun, I selected a super fun bubble wand assortment for B. We love to go outside and play with bubbles... it's one of those fun, easy things we can do when we're sort of bored, and something that we both enjoy playing with together. We actually make our own bubble solution at home, to cut down on the cost of having to purchase it all the time (we go through a lot of bubbles!). It's so much fun for us to have a little kitchen science lesson, and then head outside to see if our bubble solution works well enough. Sometimes we wind up having to add extra liquid dish soap, which is always fun for B.
B, discovering all of the fun bubble wands that were included in the set we received from Oriental Trading Co.
The Fun Bubble Wand Assortment came with ten different bubble wands with short handles, which are easy for little hands to grasp. B loves having so many different wands to choose from when we play with bubbles. There are lots of fun shapes, some of the wands have a bunch of circles for making multiple bubbles, and there are even butterfly and turtle bubble wands. We love just twirling around in the yard to see how big our bubbles can be! We have neighbors to the left and right who have friendly doggies, who love to chase bubbles, which just adds to the fun for us! Our neighbors actually specifically let their dogs out into their fenced in yards to chase our bubbles!
Off he goes...
Bubbles in action...
We love having so many fun bubble wands for everyone in the family to take turns with and enjoy! We also like having these on hand for the neighbor children to come over and play with, as well. Everyone loves to play with bubbles! Oriental Trading Co. has tons of bubbles and bubble wand sets to choose from to give you endless hours of summer fun!
Fly in the wind wrist rings...
Last but not least, we received some super fun fly in the wind wrist rings! We received a set of six rings- three blue, and three red. The red rings have red, yellow and orange nylon ribbon strands attatched to them, and the blue rings have blue, green, and purple ribbon strands attatched to them. The plastic rings are easy to grip, or can be worn around the wrist. We enjoyed taking the rings outside, and holding them up in the wind. When the wind blows, the colorful ribbon strands dance in the wind, creating beautiful swirls of color!
B loves the fly in the win ribbon rings!
We enjoy being creative with the ribbon rings! We make up our own dances with them, pretend to be colrful butterflies, or try to make different dancing shapes with them in the air! They certainly keep us moving, and they are extra fun to dance around with when there's music playing! We've been having lots of fun with these, and can't wait to share them with our friends at some of the summer programs we'll be paricipating in! I can only imagine how fun these are with a bunch of kids using them, and I may wind up purchasing additional sets to use for VBS, and next year's music class for Weekday Church School!
If you're looking for some great outdoor fun products this summer for your kiddos, day camp, VBS program, or for added fun at a family get together, check out some of these great picks...
20 Ft. Parachute
3-in-a row carnival game
Bug Happy Hoppers
Play Camp Tent
Flag Disc Toss Game
With so many fun outdoor games, activities, crafts and projects to choose from, Oriental Traing Co. will help keep your little ones entertained, moving, and learning while having lots of fun when they're on summer break! All of the items we received to try out were under $30.00, most of them were under $10.00! I am thankful that Oriental Trading Company makes it fun and easy for parents, teachers and volunteers to stock up on wonderful resources and fun products for kids to enjoy- anytime, and that they make it so affordable! Their website is easy to navigate, and the selection is out of this world!
Want Them? Buy Them!
Head on over to Oriental Trading Company to browse all of their wonderful products, and to start planning your summer learning activities! You can also sign up for e-mail savings, as well as connect with Oriental Trading through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, and Google+.
Special thanks to Oriental Trading Company for allowing us to review and share about some of their fun outdoor products for the summertime! Stay tuned for another Oriental Trading Co. review, featuring fun summer-themed crafts and projects for kids!
Have a great Friday!