|REVIEW|kinetic sand review

 

Ok, I hold my hands up!  I'd heard of Kinetic sand but had never seen it and in all honesty I thought it was a bit of a gimmick!  T had put it on his Christmas list so when we were given the chance to review, I didn't even ask him, I knew he'd want to.

 

We were sent the kinetic sand sandcastle set which contains, 3 moulds, a double ended tool, a play tray and a bag of kinetic sand.  Let me just add here that the photo on the box suggests that there's enough sand to fill the tray and to have enough left to use the moulds, in reality, you'd need another 454g bag of kinetic sand to do this - not really a proble, just something I think is worth pointing out. 


The texture of this sand is amazing, it just doesn't feel anything like sand, it's absolutely amazing, T delighted in showing me how you can create a ball that 'can actually bounce'.   He has quite literally spent hours playing with this set, I'm amazed by how occupied he was with it, adding his play doh tools to extend his play.

 

I've made sure that Father Christmas gets the message to get some more as I know he had his eye on the glow in the dark sand!

 

T found it easy to press the kinetic sand into the moulds and create the castle etc.  Although it was very clean, I was paranoid it would get everywhere so I put it on the tuff spot, im glad I did as it soon came out of the tray provided 😊

 

T made a 'castle' with all of the kinetic sand and then...
 

Decided to 'smooch' it with his feet!  'This feels so funny, Mummy' he kept saying trying to encourage me to have a go (I didn't!)  overall kinetic sand got the big thumbs up from us, I cannot believe we've not tried it before.

It can be purchased at all the toy stores and on Amazon, this kit retails for £19.99 and is from age 3+.

 
 
Disclaimer: we were sent this product in return for our honest review, all opinions are our own.

|FUN|Carol-oke giveaway and Nick Jr. Kids competition




Do your little ones like singing? Any budding karaoke stars out there?   Nick Jr. are currently running a competition for your child to star on TV?  Upload a video of your little ones singing Deck the Halls and fill out the entry form for a chance to appear on Nick Jr. Plus tune into Nick Jr. for snowy adventures every day from 8am.  Competition open now until 9 December 2016, with 5 winners selected every week.

The winning entries will then be shown throughout November and December. The first Carol-oke will broadcast on Monday 28 November on Nick Jr.  There will be one Carol-oke per week, featuring five kids.  


http://www.nickjr.co.uk/carol/

A bit of information on the competition:

·         Videos must be more than 10 seconds and under 30 seconds.  
·         No branding – including toys and clothes
·         Only one child per video
·         No background music



We are also offering you the chance to win a fab Nick Jr. goody bag containing:
1.   My Nick Jr. Crayon set
2.   My Nick Jr. Colouring Book
3.   Nick Jr. Umbrella
4.   Nick Jr. Ready steady dough set
5.   Nick Jr. Bag

Enter below, but make sure that you have ticked all the boxes as incomplete entries will be disqualified.  Ends Friday 2 December 2016 23.59.

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: this is a sponsored post.
SuperLucky Blog Giveaway Linky

|FUN|spy kits for kids, Great Gizmos review

 
 
Who doesn't love spy gadgets for kids?  I'm not sure if I or T were more excited about this review 😂. T is really into spy's at the moment, so when we were asked to choose a couple of spy kits for kids to review we had no hesitation! 
 
I chose the KidzLabs Intruder Alarm and KidsLabs Spy science spy messages kits both available from Great Gizmos.
 
Both kits are for age 8+ but T had no problem putting together the intruder alarm with a little help. And was able to do most of the message kit himself. 
 
 
The intruder alarm kit is basically a fab, simple circuit board, which your child creates and T had lots of fun doing. 
 
 
A small screwdriver is required to put it together and ideally the components need to be screwed to the wall and door, although double sided pads were included to attach. 
 
 
The alarm lets off quite a high pitched noise!  I don't fancy T activating it before bed and forgetting when he gets up in the night! 
 
 
The secret message kit contained so many activities, T is still working his way through them! 
 
The kit comes in multiple parts for the child to put together themselves. T did need help doing this but an 8 year old would have no trouble at all. The parts come together to form a 'secret message journal' complete with decoders, special pens and a morse code tool. 
 
 
T had lots of fun asking me to write him words on the special secret message paper and he used the decoder to read the words I'd written. He felt very grown up with his journal and has carried it around with him since making it. Especially the secret agent card! 
 
He's also really been enjoying learning about morse code, which was a lovely traditional addition to the kit. 

We really enjoyed reviewing these kits, which would make fantastic gifts for any budding sleuth this Christmas. 
 
Disclaimer: we were sent these products in return for our honest review. All words and opinions are our own. 

|FUN|native American small world sensory play


T loved this Native American small world sensory play tuff spot. He had so much fun playing with it. 

For a long time T has really enjoyed the Western videos on the Playmobil YouTube channel. I thought it would be nice to create a small world for him to introduce him to Native Americans.  Whilst this is not our history or culture, I think small worlds are a great way to teach the very basics of other cultures so when T learns about them at school, he already has a basic awareness.  

I managed to get this fab Native American Playmobil set secondhand and knew that T would love it. 

 

I started off by putting a sheet of A2 blue paper on the tuff spot. 

 

Next I added the teepee base and put some chick pea and brown lentil pebbles and boulders along the 'river'. I would actually have covered the whole tuff spot if I'd have had enough. 

 

I also added some hay to try and suggest a barren landscape! 

T really liked having the boulders to fill up the canoe and running his hands through them, sorting the hay from the pulses and making the horse walk through or over them!  He really enjoyed the sensory aspect almost as much as playing with his characters. 

 

As you can see, he was super-excited when he came down and saw this. 

We talked about how Native Americans were living in the US long before the early settlers, that teepee's were made from animal skins. We looked at lots of totem pole photo's online and talked about the carvings and what they could symbolise. 

We kept it out for about a week and T spent lots of time playing with it. 

 

Visit some of the other blogs below for a more accurate and historical look at Native American heritage.  Perfect for older children. 
 
I'm joining in with the Native American Heritage Month Blog Hop for this post.  I'm afraid that their giveaway is only for US viewers.
 
Native American Heritage Month | Multicultural Kid Blogs
 
Welcome to our third annual celebration of Native American Heritage Month! All month long we'll be sharing posts about sharing these rich cultures with kids. Find our full schedule of posts below, and don't forget to link up your own as well! We're also having a giveaway (see below for details and to enter!) You can find even more ideas on our Native/Indigenous Cultures Pinterest board: Follow Multicultural Kid Blogs's board Native/Indigenous Cultures on Pinterest.

Giveaway

Grand Prize Native American Heritage Month Giveaway 2016 | Multicultural Kid Blogs
 

Grand Prize

From MotherTongues: Himdag Walk in Balance T-Shirt (women’s or unisex, S-XL) US & Canada shipping only From Quarto Knows: Native North Americans by Joe Fullman & History of Indian Tribes of North America, 3 Volume Set by McKenney and Hall US shipping only From Abrams Books: Sitting Bull: Lakota Warrior and Defender of His People by S.D. Nelson, In the Footsteps of Crazy Horse by Joseph Marshall III, & Hiawatha and the Peacemaker by Robbie Robertson & illustrated by David Shannon US shipping only
 
1st Prize Native American Heritage Month Giveaway | Multicultural Kid Blogs

1st Prize

From Firefly Books: Ojibwa: People of Forests and Prairies, Iroquois: People of the Longhouse, & Encyclopedia of Native Tribes of North America all by Michael G. Johnson US & Canada shipping only From Daria Music: Set of 2 Dance Whistle Kits from Crazy Crow Trading Post US shipping only From Wisdom Tales Press: Red Cloud's War: Brave Eagle's Account of the Fetterman Fight by Paul Goble & Indian Boyhood: The True Story of a Sioux Upbringing by Charles Eastman (Ohiyesa) US shipping only
 
 
2nd Prize Native American Heritage Month Giveaway | Multicultural Kid Blogs

2nd Prize

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|FUN|Kazoops, Just Imagine CD





Do your kids watch monty and Jimmy Jones the pig on Kazoops?   Do you find yourself singing along to the songs?  Well now you can buy the album! 

The brilliant songs featured in the series from writer and singer Scott Langley have now been turned into a 20 song album for your children - and you to enjoy! 

Kazoops is all about Monty, a six-year-old boy who challenges life’s questions both big and small with the help of his limitless imagination and his best friend, Jimmy Jones, the family pet pig. In each episode, the duo enters make-believe worlds to challenge everyday preconceptions such as ‘do things have to be the same all the time?’ or ‘do all games really need rules?’


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=30-IT28dWYI

The album was released on 28 October and is available on the following digital service providers; iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Pandora and Youtube. 

The full album or individual songs can be purchased digitally. 


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rfz-k6OWmDo

The album is launched first in English and will be released in other languages in 2017.

Disclaimer: this is a sponsored post. 

|LEARN|simple Maths practice with bubble wrap sweetcorn number cards

 

It's all about the maths for T at the moment, he's addicted to Mathletics and loves doing the activities in his maths practice books!  He asks every day to 'do maths' so I've been trying to come up with a few ideas to vary it a bit and keep him interested!

T likes most vegetables but he really won't eat sweetcorn! So I thought we'd do a few sweetcorn activities and see if I can't convince him it's his favourite vegetable again 😂 well, let me tell you, this hasn't worked sadly, he's more adamant than ever.

So, one of the activities we did was to make some cute sweetcorn number cards using a bubble wrap printing technique I learned from my friend Nicola at Crafty kids at home which she used for her fab bubble wrap trees I got the idea to make the bubble wrap sweetcorn from Activity Village although, I've adapted it slightly to suit our needs. 

We used: I've added in links to the products I used for this post, if you use them I receive a small commission from Amazon
White card
Green paper
Yellow paint*
Orange paint*

* similar items have been chosen in my affiliate links if the exact product was not available.

 

We attached the bubble wrap to our loo rolls using an elastic band as shown in the a Crafty kids at home post, T liked that he could do this on his own!  He then used yellow and (a little too much!) orange paint to daub onto some sweetcorn shapes that I had pre-cut.

 

They looked really effective once all done!

 

I then cut out some husk shapes from the green paper as T didn't want to try, he then stuck the sweetcorn ears to them to make the cards.

I wrote numbers on them using a sharpie.

 

We had lots of fun using these cards and our tactile numbers.  I set up simple equations and T used the cards to complete. 

 

I also set up some 'what number is missing?' puzzles, T particularly likes these and since we started this activity he's now doing this one backwards which he prefers! 

 

We soon added our 'tactile' numbers so we had greater possibilities and were able to extend our activities.

 

What maths activities and practices would you add??  I'll be following this up with a post on various activities you could do with a set of numbers. 

You can see all our Autumn kids activities here.

|CREATE|15 Christmas gifts kids can make


At the time of publishing this post, there are 6 weekends left until Christmas, I know right!  How did that happen? Anyway this means you have plenty of time to make some gifts with your little ones. 

Here are some great gift ideas for silblings, teachers, friends and grandparents, including some lovely keepsakes which could be used year after year 😊

T and I hope to start our handmade Christmas gifts this weekend too, so we'll have some posts coming up showing what we've made this year. 

I hope you enjoy these ideas, if you make any please remember to tag/credit the originating blog. 

 
1. Love these  Homemade crayons from Clare's little tots they would be lovely to make for friends, cousins or siblings! 
 
 
 
2. This DIY Kid doodle colouring book from Arts and Crackers is such a fun and original idea, any adult colouring fanatic would love one of these, I'm guessing lots of Nana's and Grandma's!
 
 
3. These are very cute and would make a great sibling gift Slime ornaments from Little Bins for Little Hands
 
 
4. Who wouldn't want one of these fab Christmas tree salt dough ornaments from Mommy's Bundle I'm really tempted to make these, even though they are perfect for smaller children. 
 
 
5. The effect on these Heart scribble mugs from Messy Little Monster is absolutely great!! So effective!! 
 
 
6. Another little project great for little fingers, this Fingerprint Lights Photo Frame from Teach me Mommy would make a lovely keepsake. 
 
 
7. Our Lolly stick Christmas tree ornaments are super easy for little hands, T's Grandma and Nana put theirs on the tree every year!
 
 
8. Spoil an Auntie or teacher with this DIY gingerbread body scrub from The Gingerbread House
 
 
9. Know someone who has a magnetic pin board? These Textured painted magnets from Cutting Tiny Bites would make a great gift!  
 
 
10. These Bubble wrap salt dough Christmas ornaments from Crafty Kids at Home would make a lovely gift, perfect for little hands and so effective en mass!
 
 
11. Cute alert!!! Older kids would love to make these No-sew sock snowman from Easy Peasy and Fun and I know they would make a welcome gift for everyone!!
 
 
12. In our house this would make a perfect gift for Dad!  These Snowman Hot Chocolate Spoons from Smart Savvy Living are super simple, can be mass made and are really effective. 
 
 
13. Start collecting your loo rolls now!!  These Loo roll Chocolate boxes from 3 Princesses and 1 Dude are just perfect if you need a gift for a lot of people, like teachers or nursery staff. 
 
 
14. These Reindeer Thumbprint Ornaments from The Happy Housewife really would stand the test of time, they are so cute, definitely keepsakes! 
 
 
15. Another fantastic keepsake ornament, these Santa Handprint Ornaments from Messy Little Monster could be loved year after year. 
 
 
 
And if you want some gift tags for when you wrap your gifts, why not have a look at these from The Natural Homeschool.com