“ Brand: Mothercare / Age: 6 months / Type: Learning Toy „
My 4 month old daughter received these as a gift Christmas 2008. They are a pack of 6 cubes in a plastic container so you can keep them nice when your child's not playing. This isn't however, very child friendly. The cubes are machine washable which is an added bonus when you have a child who adores putting things in there mouth!!
Each side of the cube has a letter of the alphabet and a picture and 5 of the cubes make a crinkle sound whilst the remaining one has a bell.
Mothercare state they are to encourage reading, co-ordination and physical development and I would agree with all of those points.
Although Mothercare state they are for 6 months and over my daughter adores the bright colours and at four months is enjoying exploring how to pick bigger things up.
They will be a useful tool over the coming years when she slowly learns how to spell.
A useful accessory to any toy box!
My husband and I bought these for our son when he was 5 months old, he was starting to sit unaided and making his way round the room on his tummy. We needed more toys for him to play with and as I had enjoyed my blocks as a child I wanted my son to have some too.
When I first saw the blocks I liked that they were soft, anything to keep my son from harm. I liked the bright colours and the fact they had the alphabet and pictures on them.
My son loved these from the first time he started playing with them. At 5 months he was a little too young to pick them up easily though, as the blocks are quite large and his hands small. He is now almost 8 months and a pro at picking them up. He finds them amusing when we stack them up for him to knock over. He likes the crinkle noises they make and enjoys shaking the one that contains a bell.
-There are 6 blocks- 5 crinkly, 1 containing a bell.
-They are machine washable- I tend to put them in a pillowcase on a cool setting and they dry quickly.
-Each side of the block is a different colour- yellow, purple, orange, green, blue and red.
-Each side contains a letter and corresponding picture, i.e. E-elephant and U-umbrella.
-They encourage manipulation, movement and exploration.
-Taste lovely; well the amount my son has them in his mouth they must do.
-They recommend this toy from 6 months, we bought them for our son at 5 months and this may have been a little young. He struggled to grasp them.
-At first they can be used for stacking/knocking over, picking up-hand-eye coordination.
-Now my son is 'commando crawling' he likes chasing after them, picking them up, moving them from place to place and has tried stacking them. The fact he is a boy and very heavy handed means they're never actually stacked when he tries.
-From around a year, they can be used to learn colours, letters and what the pictures are.
-As the child gets older they can be used to spell simple words too.
Overall a long lasting toy that is one of those toys that should be in everyones toy box.
I received these cubes as a gift when my child was about 2 months old (took a while for relatives in Scotland to get them transported down by my dad). These cubes retail for £8.99 and are available in Mothercare stores and on their website www.mothercare.com
The cubes are about 10cmx10cm and have bright fabric outers with a soft sponge inner. The cubes are machine washable on a cool cycle. They come in a plastic case with a handle for easy storage, but unfortunately this case then needs to be kept clear of the child due to suffocation risk - using an alternative material may have prevented this being necessary. In the pack I got 5 of the cubes have a crinkle texture and one has a bell on it. Each cube has 6 alphabet letters on it, each with a word which begins with that letter and an illustration.
The stated age range for these cubes is 6 months plus, but I began using the cubes with my son at 2 months. At this age we built stacks of two or three cubes beside him while he was lying on the floor and he would develop his swiping skills by knocking them down. Having a cube with a bell in it helped with this as he gained sound as well as visual feedback.
Since 4 months, he has been sitting supported and the cubes have helped him develop skills in picking up larger objects with two hands. He has enjoyed the crinkle textures at this stage.
From the age that a baby can sit independently - 6-7 months, I imagine these cubes can further develop motor skills and co-ordination by using them to stack.
As a child approaches 2 years I imagine these cubes will be useful in helping develop knowledge of letters and sounds. Many of the letter/word combinations are good for this r-ring, s-sun , j-jungle, w-worm, z-zebra, x-x-ray, q-queen, n-nut, e-elephant, r-robot, m-moon, d-doll, a-apple, t-teddy, d-daisy, c-cat, y-yoyo, a-anchor, m-money, b-bee, k-kite, l-lion, l-lemon, h-hippo, g-gate, u-umbrella, o-orange, e-egg, m-monkey, v-van, p-panda. Some are poorer choosing to use the sound as part of a constanent blend eg d-drum, f-flag. Some are using the letter where it makes a different sound than it's main phonetic one which may confuse young children - o-owl(ow, no o sound), g-giraffe (makes a juh sound instead of a guh sound), i-ice-cream (ay instead of ih).
From 3 years onwards the cubes have been constructed to create basic words from them. constanent-vowel-constanent (cvc) words include dad, mum, cat, dog, sat, rat, hat, pat, run, sun, hit, mit, ran, mug, jug, jog, leg, peg, met, set, sad, mad. There are also a number of more complex words that can be spelt but I wouldn't recommend it as a teaching tool as patterns cannot be seen.
Overall though, it is a very long lasting toy
Start baby off with stacking and before you know it they will be able to recognize letters, colours and images!