“ Manufacturer: Orchard Toys / Type: Problem Solving „
We have been playing a lot of dice games recently, and this is one of the games which seems to especially appeal to the children in my class.
As with many of the Orchard Toys games there is a definite educational link. This game, which is concerned with matching numbers and colours has been designed to:
* Link with National Curriculum Maths
* Improve colour recognition
* Encourage observation, personal and social skills
* Encourage turn taking
PRODUCT AND PACKAGING...
The game comes in a nice bright box with a picture of some jolly monsters on the front and bits of information about the game on the sides and the back of the box.
Inside the box I find:
* instruction booklet
* 1 spinner
* 1 die
* 4 monsters with 8 pieces to each monster
We get all of the pieces to have a look at them and noticed that there were eight pieces for each of the 4 monsters- a head, face, two arms, tail, two legs and a tummy for each. We had thought that there would be six pieces for each monster, ie coinciding with the numbers on the die, but actually some numbers appear more than once.
All of the pieces are a good size and are nice and sturdy- not the kind of body parts which will get damaged the first time they are handled by children.
PLAYING THE GAME...
The idea of the game is that the children have to collect all of the pieces to make up their monster. Although there is a spinner allowing children to swap parts with other players, we tend to play the game a lot more simply, and don't use the spinner at all.
Basically, as expected, the die is rolled and the player picks up the body part with that number on it. If they don't need the body part then the simple way to play the game is that the player misses a turn. I like this way because it does encourage turn taking and although at first the children required a turn taking board they are now able to accept when they need to miss a turn.
There are more complex rules as written on the instructions but I find it more enjoyable when the children aren't bogged down with rules and regulations.
WHO IS IT FOR?
The game is recommended for children aged 3-6 years and I would tend to agree with the recommendation.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY...
The game costs £9.50 but is currently reduced to £4.99 and is available from good toy shops and online at www.orchardtoys.org
The game is a great way to teach and consolidate numbers and colours in a fun way. It also encourages turn taking and social skills.
The game parts are well made and even after lots of playing they show little sign of wear and tear.
Thanks for reading