A good language enhancing toy will spark a child’s imaginative play. It is a delight to watch them build on their story as they take a prop and change the action, surroundings and storyline.
Yesterday, I made a “Silly Roller” critter with my little four year-old friend, Duncan. Choosing from the three roller options–a pineapple, ladybug or elephant, Duncan chose the pineapple car to make, complete with a banana for headlights, grapes for the exhaust, a pear man to drive and a blueberry girl as passenger. The double-sided cardboard shape, made by Alex Toys, came with lots of stickers and punch-outs to assemble the car, as well as a set of wheels to pop on the completed vehicle. Assembling the car was just the beginning of the language fun. Talking about where the pieces go, what their function was and asking for the next piece spurred on conversation. When Duncan’s pineapple car was complete, I sat back and watched him enter a land of imagination for an hour.
He stepped outside and sat down with his car. He rolled it across the patio, through puddles to make tracks, down steps to the grass, over sticks, down the slide and past a rock. Grabbing a piece of blue chalk, he started drawing a line on the big rock, declaring it a road for the pineapple car which then navigated the craggy rock. Back down the rock, the pineapple car rolled across the lawn to more puddles.
When it was time for me to leave, Duncan was asking for the glue so he could add some small sticks to decorate his pineapple car. More ideas–more action to come.
Mix a little art and creativity and you’ve got a great language learning and play day.
The opinions expressed in this review are solely those of the author. “Silly Rollers” were provided for review by Alex Toys.