“ Brand: Orchard Toys / Ages: 2-6 / Players: 2-4 „
I purchased this Lotto set from Orchard Games as a gift for my son for his second birthday. He has a love of animals and activities such as puzzles so this seemed to combine his two loves. There were not many games available for his age but this one is for ages 2 - 6 years so this seemed ideal for him. I paid £6 for it with free delivery from Amazon, where it currently retails for £8.94. The game is for 2-4 players and is designed as a simple first lotto game. The box itself is brightly coloured with pictures of animals (as you can see above) and this meant that it instantly appealed to my son upon receiving it. Inside the box, there are 4 play boards each with a picture of a farm scene at the top and then at the bottom items from that scene and a farmer. There is a dairy farm and bee keeper amongst the more 'traditional' farm scenes. There are also the playing cards that need to be removed from the cardboard edging on the first use. You are also provided with a set of instructions - these are very basic so not hard to remember. The aim of the game is to be the first to collect all of the cards on your board. So, to play the game, all of the cards are turned face down in the centre and the instructions are given as follows 'Players take it in turn to turn up one of the farm cards, making sure the other players all see what it is. If the player has the same picture on their farm board, they place the card on the matching square, making the noise or the action of the item pictured on the card. If it is not on their board, it is returned to its original place on the table, and play passes to the next player. Once a player has collected all their farm cards, they try to find their farmer by turning over one of the farmer cards to see if they can match the one on their farm board. If they can match the farmer, they win the game; if not, they try again on their next turn' My son is 2 and a half and we play a slightly simpler version of the game - we do not return the cards to the middle but just match to the correct board as I do not believe he would quite grasp that memory aspect to the game just yet. However, my son loves the game none-the-less and this means that we have somewhere to progress to once he is ready. My son asks to play this game everyday (which I must admit does get a bit monotonous for the adult concerned!) so this gives a good idea of how much he enjoys to play it. He loves to identify what is on the cards and match them to the board. I think that this game has really aided my son's development in a lot of ways. It has been a good introduction to 'turn taking' - a concept that he grasped very quickly with this game - hence has helped his social interaction skills. It has also developed his vocabulary as he has learned words like 'scarecrow' from the picture boards. Another good skill he has picked up is matching as he matches the farm cards to his board which helps with early literacy. We also count how many cards we need to complete our boards as well as discuss what we can see/what noises animals make. The fact that he is learning so much whilst doing something he find so much fun is such a plus point for me as a mother. I really can't recommend this game highly enough. Yes, there is not much to it and it can get a little grating on me as the adult but this is precisely why it appeals so much to my young son. It is easy for him to understand and play and particularly good for families to include younger children in a family game. It's a lovely introduction to playing games at an early age and is fun and educational too.
For Easter my parents brought my son the Old McDonald Lotto Game. He was 20 months old and I thought it was way too old for him to enjoy and was surprised to see the recommended age was 2+. I'd never seen or heard of Orchard Toys before but was pleasantly surprised with the quality and the enjoyment he got out of it. Straight away the box caught the eye with the bright colours and animal pictures on the box. The title "Old McDonald Lotto" is printed at the top in white writing under in smaller white writing says "with a moo moo here and a moo moo there". There is no doubt when looking at the box that it's part of the Orchard Toy range as the logo is in the corner and the box style are all very similar. On the back of the box there is an educational guide showing how the game aids certain areas of education. The game piece are made with recycled cardboard, the card board is thick and does not bend easily. The pictures on the pieces are drawn extremely well. They pictures are true to life animals in their basic form so their would be no doubt in a child's mind what animal it was. The are bold and colourful to catch the youngsters eye. The general idea of the game is farm yard/animal bingo. There are 4 boards all with different pictures on and 28 cards to be picked. The idea is the person who completes there board first wins. The instructions say everyone is to have a board and all the picture cards face down. You take it in turns to pick a card and if it matches a picture on your board you can place it on top. If it doesn't match the card is placed back down. Once the first person has completed their board we have a winner!! It encourages animal noises to be made when a match is found (this is my little boys favourite part). This game is excellent for matching skills, observation and memory skills and developing social communication. I would definitely recommend this game as it's fun and educational and all for only £8.94 (Amazon). The age guide is 2 - 6 years old which I totally agree with and can be played in a group of up to 4 people. This game and packaging is made from 100% recycled material so another big plus for Orchard Toys.
Board games are something that we like to do as a family although we get less time to do it now my kids are older and at school more. Time seems to disappear on clubs and homework, but if we get chance, we do like to spend some better quality time in this way. This is a game better aimed at younger children in my opinion. We revisited playing this last weekend with my niece and my two sons, aged 2, 4, and 6. My boys already seemed to find this gentle game a bit too easy though they were willing to play it so they could play with their cousin. The recommended age is 2-6, though I question if it might be more like 4 or 5 for the upper limit. My sons certainly expect something a bit more challenging or fun these days but then again we have played board games together from them being two themselves so they need more challenge than a child new to games. The game is made by Orchard Toys who make high quality products from thick cardboard which is ideal for little hands. It can be handled by little fingers without the pieces bending and getting spoilt. This particular game is for 2-4 players, and is partly a memory recall game, and also based upon the game bingo. There are 4 large gameboards showing a colourful farm scene, then the bottom part of the board shows 6 smaller squares where the items from the big picture such as animals or items from the farm like scarecrows and tractors. To the bottom right hand side there is a rectangle which shows the farmer from the scene on your board. The aim of the game is to find your 6 square pieces, and then to find your farmer - the person who manages this first is the winner. To make it more tricky, all 4 of the farmers and the 24 farm items are all placed face down in the middle. Each player picks up one card on their turn, and the person most likely to win is the one paying most attention and remembering where the cards are located. The fact that there are only 24 smaller cards and 4 bigger ones means that there are not so many to keep track of for the longer player. It makes it more likely they can actually win without the parent and older siblings helping the younger player. It does mean however, that for older players, this is not that challenging and the game will be over pretty quickly as it is very easy to keep track of where your pieces are. With 4 players, a round of this game takes less than ten minutes, so it is perfect to keep a toddlers brain occupied without losing concentration. While the game is simple, it does help expand a childs vocabulary - hey look, you found the cow there. What is that animal you found? It also improves concentration and memory recall trying to remember where your pieces go. The farm is also a perfect scenario as it is common place enough for the 2 year old child to have experience of it and recognise the items being shown on the cards. It is also good for encouraging children to take turns and work on increasing their concentration span to get to the end of the game. The cost of the game is under ten pounds for a new copy on amazon. I think you could perhaps find this cheaper buying a second hand set, which would be fine in my opinion as the pieces wear well with normal play so it would still look good. I think the new cost is perfectly fine though as it is a fun game for young children and would be well played with for a while. It's a bit less academic than some of the games we have from Orchard toys as there is no dice or counting involved, but nevertheless there is still a fair amount of value in playing this game.
==The Purchase== My youngest daughter always gets a little jealous when I am playing a game with my eldest daughter so I decided to have a look for a game which would be suitable for playing with her as part of her Christmas present. We were first introduced to Orchard Games when my eldest daughter brought one home from school as part of her Chatty Matters activity bag so I knew how good they were and so searched Orchard Games on Amazon to see what would be suitable. The really good things about Amazon is you get a lot of information about the games and so I was happy to find that this game seemed suitable for my daughter and was the correct age range being for ages 2-6 years. I paid just under £7 with free delivery however I have checked the current price and it is currently selling at £5.98 which is fantastic value in my opinion as it is such good fun and educational to boot. ==The Box== The game comes packaged in a cardboard box which is a decent thickness and nice and strong to keep all the pieces in. The box was wrapped in cellophane when it first arrived which means of course you know you are the first one to have played with it and that all the pieces will be inside the box. The box is very brightly coloured and has the name of the game across the top in bright white lettering and then "...with a moo moo here, and a moo moo there....." written underneath it. The picture on the front of the box is of a farmer surrounded by animals and items from on the farm such as the bee hive, a Pig, a tractor and a Cow and then in the bottom corner the box tells you the game is for 2-4 players and for ages 2-6. On the reverse of the box you have a picture of all the pieces that you will find inside the box along with a list of the contents which are 4 farm boards, 24 farm cards, 4 farmer cards and an instruction leaflet. There is an educational guide on the box which tells you educationally what the game promotes which is, Reinforces object matching skills, Encourages observation and memory skills, Develops social communication, Links with the Early Learning Goals and National Curriculum Literacy Key Stage 1. When I read this on the back of the box I was pleased with how much this game could promote especially when it is suitable for children so young. ==The Pieces== Inside the box there are 4 playing boards, each playing board is about 8 inches x 10 inches and is made of hard board, the top half of the board has a picture on it of a scene on a farm and then on the bottom half there is 6 small squares with different animal or farm item in them and then a rectangle which has a picture of the farmer in it. The farmer and the 6 objects in the squares are all within the picture above them for example one of the boards has a farmer in a bee keepers outfit getting the honey out of the beehive with a Goose and a sleeping Cat at his feet and a Sheep and a Dog in a field behind him surrounded by a fence and then a little green tractor travelling up the hill in the background. The items you have to find on your board for this one is a Sheep, 2 Bumble Bees, a Dog, a sleeping Cat, a Goose, the Green Tractor and finally the Farmer in the Bee keeping outfit. Each of the boards works with the same idea and the others have scenes of a farmer mucking out a pigsty, a farmer using a horse to plough a field and finally a farmer milking a cow. I really like the boards and the way they are laid out and to begin with I just used the boards for Emily to find the animals as my Mam after playing the game with my eldest daughter on Christmas day had told me she didn't think that Emily would grasp it. The pieces that go with the boards all have a white background and then have the picture of the item in the middle, the pieces all have rounded edges to make them young children friendly which of course is brilliant. Within the box not only was there an instruction leaflet which was very easy to follow but there was also a leaflet showing what Orchard games are available and also what age range each one of them is meant for which I have found very useful as it has pointed out a couple more games which may be suitable for both my daughters to play with. ==Playing the Game== The game is very easy to play which is exactly what I expected with it being suitable for ages 2 and up, you simply take the 4 farmer cards and the 24 farm item cards and place them face down on a flat surface, you place the 4 farmer cards separately. Each player picks a farm board and then you take it in turns to pick a card from the farmer items section and see if it matches an item on your board, you take it in turns to pick the cards until one of you manages to fill your 6 squares up on your board, once the 6 items are found then you just have to find your farmer and the one who does it first is the winner. The first time we played the game following from my Mam saying she didn't think that Emily would be able to play the game herself, myself and Emily played as a team against her sister Sophie. The game was very easy to set up although Emily did keep trying to pinch the pieces but after she was told she had to wait she was fine. We began playing and Emily held the board for us and when we found a piece that matched she was able to put it onto the correct space on the board, it was of no surprise to me that she could match them up as she is very good at the wooden style pull out jigsaws. We continued playing and if Sophie picked up a card which was on our board I would point out to Emily which item we wanted and then once Sophie replaced the piece asked her to get the item and she was able to do so with ease. We played the game a couple of times that evening and we made a big fuss and cheered whenever each of us won which got Emily really excited. We also used the pieces to ask her what noises the animals make and she loved making the noises and to make her more familiar with some pieces we changed the names of them a little such as moo cow for the cow and green chug chug for the green tractor which seemed to help her. The second time we played the game I decided that after her performance the previous night that we would give the game a go with her playing with her own game board. We found that Emily can grasp the game really well and she really loves playing, she doesn't like when someone turns her card over and she has to wait for someone else to have their turn before she can claim it but I just sit next to her and just remind her to wait her turn and she remembers again which is great in my opinion considering she is 2 years old and not only that but she is nearer 2 than 3. ==Opinions== I love this game and so do both my girls, Sophie is 5 years old and she still enjoys playing the game more for the fact of playing a game that Emily can manage than it being a favourite game of hers as it is too easy for her although saying that she seems to keep picking the same cards up and forgets that she already knows what the card is. Emily gets really excited about the game and when we finish a game she shouts "again, again" she gets really upset when I say it's time to put the game away. I love the fact that Emily is learning so much from this game and not only the facts of matching, taking turns and memory skills but also animal names and sounds which are obviously a basic for any young child to be learning. The game is fantastic quality and the pieces are all made of thick board and we have played with the game many times through the last few weeks and there is no damage to any of them. The pictures on the boards and pieces are all bold and brightly coloured without having too much detail for your child to concentrate on. The one suggestion I would have for Orchard Games is that I would have a couple of extra blank playing pieces in the box so that if a piece accidentally got lost you could at least replace it with a blank one rather than not being able to use the farm board that needs the item. I cannot praise this game enough, I get bugged nearly every day to play the game and myself and Emily have played just the 2 of us when Sophie is at school and she is able to play one on one really well, the next step for us is for the girls Dad to join in so that she can learn to wait even longer between her goes and help her learn some patience. I have found that after a few rounds of this game I am sometimes left a little hoarse as I am constantly telling the girls whose go it is and reminding Emily to wait her turn as well as making animal noises and cheering. We all give this game 5 stars, I was surprised to find Emily can manage to play the game and my Mam was even more surprised but I am glad she can as the game gives her so much enjoyment and it is really lovely to see. I am now looking forward to buying some moe Orchard Games suitable for Emily and seeing how she progresses.
My son was given this for his 2nd birthday and we both instantly loved it for several reasons. Firstly it is a farm set and my son loves anything to do with animals and farm machinery. Secondly the images are fun and easily identifiable. Thirdly the game is made from very durable, thick card and can withstand any battering my little man chooses to give it (it even survived being chewed on by my 9 month old, teething nephew!) The came consists of 4 large playing mats and 24 individual picture cards. The large cards have a farm scene on the top and 6 smaller images relating to the picture below. The scenes are of a beekeeper, lady farmer ploughing a field with a horse, lady farmer milking a cow in the traditional stool and bucket way and a male farmer mucking out the pigs. Each of the smaller cards matches the small images on the large playing mat. The set comes with an instruction leaflet but I can't comment on that as I didn't read it! The first few times of playing we worked together to name all the images and match them to the playing mats. As mentioned he was 2 at the time but has picked up names very quickly. Now the game is used in a very versatile way, on occasions my son plays on his own and lays out all the playing mats, turns the small cards upside down and just works through until he is finished. My favourite way of playing together is to take turns to pick a card and if it is an animal to make that noise and he has to guess which animal it is (I usually take out all the non-animal cards first to avoid confusion). We also play the traditional way and take turns to pick a card and try to match it to our card. The box says it is for ages 2-6 and for 2-4 players. As this was a gift I don't know how much it cost and I havn't seen it in any shop since. We love this game and would highly recommend it to any parent of young children.
My daughter was given this for her 3rd birthday. She loves playing games and this one soon became one of her favourites. The games consists of four playing boards, 24 farm cards and 4 larger farmer cards. They are packaged in a 'top opening' box. Any game or jigsaw that comes in a box like this (rather than the traditional box with a lid) always gets bonus points from me! They are easier to store, as they can be stored like books, making it much easier for children to access them. (Boxes with lids have to be piled on top of one another, so when the bottom on is needed, the whole pile gets upskittled!) They are also easier for children to carry as even if dropped, the pieces will remain inside. As with all Orchard Toys, everything (box included) is made of substantially thick card so is able to cope with the battering it is likely to get from toddlers. The game is for 2 - 4 players and the recommended age is 2 - 6 years. As I said, we were given this when my daughter was 3 years and she grasped the concept of it immediately. A there are generally only 2 of us playing we play with two boards each. Each player take a playing board (or two!). The top of the playing boards depict a farmyard scene which includes a farmer and various farmyard jobs/animals/vehicles/etc (milking a cow; ploughing a field; a beekeeper and mucking out the pigs!). Below the scene are 6 squares, each containing an image from the scene. Adjacent to these is an image of the farmer shown in the scene. The farm cards and the farmer cards are placed face down on the table (or floor!). Each player takes a turn at turning a farm card over and seeing if it matches an image on their playing board - for added fun you can make the relevant noise/do the action. If it does match you place it over the image, if not turn it face down again. Once all 6 images have been collected the player can then turn a farmer card over to try find their farmer. I was very pleased to see that two of the farmers are women! The images are bright and colourful, the farmers/animals have lots of character and are very clear. It is nice that along with the more commonly known animals/equipment (e.g. cow; pig; tractor) there are some of the less common ones (e.g. woodpecker; milk churn; turkey) allowing you to introduce your child to some new words. This is a well made and well designed matching and memory game that is easy for young children to grasp. I would highly recommend it!
I am still relatively new to the Orchard Toys range, and after buying my daughter a couple of the games I soon realised how fabulous they are and decided that I wanted more of them. About the company For those of you who aren't aware of Orchard Toys, they are a leading manufacturer of educational games and puzzles. Established in 1971 by Keith Harvey, the company was bought out on 2004 by the Export Sales Director. The company was initially based in Nottingham and are now located in Wymondham, Norfolk. When manufacturing their games and puzzles, Orchard Toys use 100% recycled products for both the games and their packaging. All products are designed with their motto "learning made fun" and they ensure that all games and puzzles "combine bright innovative design, durability and quality with sound educational principles" The Packaging After looking through the Orchard Toys website, one game was leaping out at me and that game was Old MacDonald Lotto. The box is immediately eye-catching with its bright colours and cute picture on the front. The title of the game is at the top of the box in bold white lettering with smaller text underneath stating "with a moo moo here, and a moo moo there". The majority of the front of the box is covered with pictures of animals and farmyard items surrounding Old MacDonald himself. the familiar Orchard Toys logo stands out against the background so it is immediately clear who manufactures this game. On the reverse of the box you will find an educational guide which you will find on all Orchard Toys products and this particular game has been designed to: * reinforce object matching skills * encourage observation and memory skills * develop social communication * link with Early Learning Goals and National Curriculum Literacy Key Stage 1 Tha back of the box is just as bright and colourful as the front, and shows you the contents of the game along with some larger bright pictures of some of the animals. Inside the box you will find: * 4 farm boards * 24 farm cards * 4 farmer cards * 1 instruction booket The Game The idea of the game is to be the first person to fill their farm board with all the pictures. To play the game each player needs a farm card which shows seven pictures in total - six farm pictures and one farmer. To begin the game all the farm and farmer cards must be placed on a flat surface face down and the players take it in turns to pick a card and if it matches a picture on your board you can place it on top. (If it doesn't match the card is placed back down). The instructions state that when you match a card to your board you can make the animal sound as you place it on your board but of course this isn't compulsory! The game continues until a player has matched all the cards to their pictures on the farm board. My Opinion I personally think Orchard Toys have yet again excelled themselves with this game, it is a really fun game with the added educational aspect which is helping the children learn through play. My daughter loves playing this game, and sometimes she will want to do the noises of the animals but other times she just likes the simple lotto game. One thing I really like about the game is that the farm boards not only show the pictures required but at the top of the board all the animals and items are included in a scene from a farm so tthe child can see them where they would appear on a farm. This game does help enhance a child's memory as they are required to remember where cards are that other players have put back down, but it also teaches them about farm animals and items that they maybe haven't come across regularly, such as: Scarecrow Milk churns Woodpecker Tractor The price of Old MacDonald Lotto is currently £9.25 on the Orchard Toys website though you may find it slightly cheaper elsewhere on line, but I think that the price is about right for such a good game. The age range of this game is two to six and to play the game you need two to four players. I cannot recommend this game enough, I think it is fantastic and my daughter really enjoys playing it, though she still hasn't grasped the concept of winning and she likes to give me the card she picks up if it is on my card!