I was recently offered an opportunity to review a puzzle by ImagiPLAY. ImagiPLAY’s motto is “toys with integrity” and they strive to set themselves apart by producing “quality products that connect with nature, have eco-friendly sources, and hold educational value, ImagiPLAY works to benefit the earth we share and the people that inhabit it.”
ImagiPLAY recently sent me their Counting Bunnies puzzle to review. It sells for $17.99 on their site and is recommended for ages 3+.
Here is the description of the puzzle:
This whimsical puzzle makes learning to count fun. Mama bunny is #1, followed by 2-7 baby bunnies all trying to get at the carrots, #9 & 10. Hand-crafted & hand painted with child-safe paints. Made from plantation-grown rubberwood, an environmentally-friendly hardwood.
When I first saw this puzzle, I was a little concerned that Jake would be bored with it. He will be five in December and has been reading, writing and counting well past 10 since he was 3. My perceptions, however, obviously did not take the play aspect of this toy into account because now I can’t keep him away from it.
Here are some shots of us opening the puzzle and Jake playing with it:
Like I said, I was skeptical that this toy that appeared to be so simple yet for ages 3+ would keep Jake’s attention. I am so used to seeing kids toys that do everything except cook dinner (boy wouldn’t that be nice) that a toy that requires the child to use their imagination was a bit unrecognizable to me. It didn’t light up, it didn’t make sounds, it didn’t require batteries! The funny thing was, that despite my doubts, he didn’t even hesitate when I took it out of the box. He wanted to play with it. He didn’t ask “doesn’t it do anything?” or “where do you put the batteries?” He was drawn to it regardless.
He played with the Counting Bunnies puzzle in so many different ways. Aside from the basic lining them up in numerical order on the base, he made a game out if and at one point was using the entire counter. He easily played with it for over an hour the first time, and at least 1/2 an hour each time after.
The puzzle itself is very bright and sturdy. I LOVE that it is made from an environmentally friendly wood and that it uses child-safe paints. It is well crafted and although subtle, the pieces do only fit best interlocking in a certain way to help aid with the counting and getting the bunnies lined up in order. I do have one suggestion for the puzzle makers and that is to provide an organic cotton drawstring bag or some other method to store the puzzle in, or keep the pieces from falling out. In our house, shelf space is at a minimum and the little bunnies fall easily off the base when not kept out of reach. Which means they are prone to getting lost in “hurricane Jake” (his room).
Overall, this is a great puzzle. The quality and the imagination possibilities make it pretty versatile for a wide range of ages. Even some kids under age 3 (with proper supervision) would certainly enjoy lining up the little bunnies! This is a toy that will definitely hold up because it is a quality wooden toy, and is something that can be saved and handed down to future generations as well.
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