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Out-of-The-Box Fun: Toddibox {Review + Giveaway}

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The Toddibox: Terrific or Terrible? What’s The Verdict?

Started by a group of early childhood educators, Toddibox is a “monthly subscription box filled with multi-disciplinary activities and a storybook based on a theme. The box is filled with fun and inspiration for children aged between 3 to 6 “. It promises to provide parents and children the opportunity to bond over meaningful, creative, fun and mind-enriching activities.

Now, being an educator myself, you all know what a fuss-pot I can be. So the following review comes in my usual honest, and detailed (‘cheong hae’ if you prefer) style. If you want, you can skip all the way to the bottom to get the verdict ( and details on how to win a Toddibox to try!).

My box arrived on Friday , and once my boys (2 and 4) got up from their naps, we started ‘attacking’ the box.

A Bit More About Toddibox Materials

Inside a Toddibox

Activities You ‘ll Get:

Each Toddibox will come with 1 storybook and 4 different categories of prepared materials:

  1. Ten Fingers: craft and hands-on activities
  2. Thinking Tots: Literacy & numeracy activities
  3. Tempo & Beat: Music & movement
  4. Test Tube: Experiments

Every activity comes packaged with an activity guide (for the parent) detailing the instructions for carrying out the activity.
For certain activities, there may be suggestions for activity extensions.

Who Is It For?

It is targeted primarily at children aged 3 – 6, but they say it can be modified for children younger and older.

What was in mine?

My review box came filled with Christmas-related activities. We had 8 items:

  • Book: 1
  • Ten Fingers Activities: 2
  • Tempo & Beat: 1
  • Test Tube: 1
  • Thinking Tots: 3

Our Review
{My detailed review of EACH Toddibox activity is found in this PDF document: TPP Toddibox Activities REVIEW.
Read it if you are a particular sort of parent.
If not, head straight down to else skip to bottom to get my VERDICT & Giveaway Details!}

Little 26 m.o. Zee concentrating on his Christmas tree

Zee and Grandma making the Christmas crepe paper wreath

Lee, 4, intent on being a scientist

MY VERDICT

Activities: What I liked
Overall, I think that the activities do provide children meaningful engagement.

I really like that the activities were neatly packaged into individual clear ziplocked bags that I can just pull out to do.It’s nice that they had the marker and glue I needed for some activities packed in there too. Having the materials all ready is really helpful for me because yes, while I can go google ideas and all, the material preparation can take a lot of time I don’t have. (Eh, stay-home mom really means I have the cooking and cleaning and laundering all to myself to ‘enjoy’, every minute of the day. Don’t forget my umpiring of kid-wrestling matches! :P)

The guide sheets had very clear instructions and that really is great because I tend to be a mom-on-the-fly, and don’t really do much pre-activity planning. So when we do stuff, I need information to be quickly accessible to me to know what to do.There is a range of activities.

What I didn’t like too much

The Thinking Tots activities seem to need a little more thought put into them (pun intended) to maximize the learning possibilities and the engagement hooks need to be strengthened.

My Wishing List

For me, Toddibox is an educational fun product that I would put a big fat ‘Tick’ on. But being the incurable educator-curriculum designer I am , these are just some suggestions for what I would like to see in future Toddiboxes:

  • A stronger learning connection across activities. E.g. It would be more meaningful if numeracy and literacy activities could build upon the storyline of the book provided.
  • General Knowledge & Cross-cultural Learning: It would be good to have non-fiction information about the origin of Christmas, its significance and how it is celebrated in different cultures.
  • Pre-punched holes in handouts: For easier filing
  • A learning journey chart or book for child and parent to complete as they tackle each activity. This may even include a reflection component for the older kids to write down their learning take-aways.

Investment Value
Each box is retailing at $39.95.

With 8 things in every box, you pay an average of $5 for each activity. This $5 per activity goes into paying someone else to do the work of i. hunting ideas, ii. Preparing materials.Ideas? The internet if full of ideas already right? You could easily go find them yourself!
Materials? The provided materials not expensive, and can be easily find at places like Popular and Daiso too. You can also buy them yourself easily.But as you and I , being busy parents, know doing either takes time.So is this worth us spending the hard-earned money to pay someone else the time to do all our legwork while we just focus on doing the activity with our children?

Simply, is this WORTH buying?

This is where I have to be completely honest.
The investment value depends on the type of parent you are, your parenting beliefs, and your lifestyle.

I personally think that it is a worthwhile investment for parents who:

  • Are busy
  • Want to do more meaningful, focused activities with their children
  • Feel inadequate and unsure how to start
  • Who have the financial means to do so

In homes where mom is not primary caregiver, but another adult e.g. grandparent or helper, I think a Toddibox would also be a meaningful activity box to have (because really TV, toys and iPads are great but they cannot be used ALL the time).

Now, the big question must be: Will you get it yourself, Sarah?

Actually, I am right now quite tempted to get it for some close friends with young children. I know they will find it a meaningful gift because they often share with me that they often find it difficult to plan things to do with their children.I am not going to be subscribing yet because (1) budget constraints ( we’re still primarily a single-income family) (2) haven’t yet decided on what learning focus areas I’m going to pursue for homelearning in 2013.

But you can bet I will be keeping a close eye on the future Toddiboxes for themes that are of interest and relevance to us. While I won’t subscribe just yet, I will buy individual boxes that catch my fancy.Photobucket{ Love Gifts Christmas Giveaway}
3 Blessed Readers here are going to be able to try the Toddibox for yourself in Jan 2013!

To stand a chance to win a Toddibox, simply follow these 3 easy steps:

1. Like The Playful Parents Page
2. Like The Toddibox Page
3. Leave a comment below to tell us
WHAT theme or activity you find most enjoy OR most difficult exploring with your kids.
You must also indicate your name, email, and age of your kids.

IMPORTANT! All 3 steps must be done in order to qualify for the draw.
Contest ends next Monday, 17 December 2012, at 1159h.

Winners are chosen by random.org, and decisions are final.
Contest is only opened to Singapore residents.

## GIVEWAY NOW CLOSED ##

MORE GOODIES
If you really like what you’ve read about Toddibox, and would like to subscribe,
you can enjoy the following discounts till 31 Dec 2012
:: 6-months subscription: Get a month free on top of current published price.
:: 12-months subscription: Get 10% off on top of published price.

For subscriptions completed before 31 Dec 2012,
Toddibox is also giving a 10% discount voucher for $100 or more spent on ToddiParty boxes.
(Discount Voucher expires 31 Dec 2013)

To enjoy these goodies, just use the code – PLAYFUL- in the Comments box on the Order Form.

Disclaimer:
I was given a complimentary Toddibox to review with my children. But the opinions and comments here are 100% my own.

* UPDATED: Winners of Giveaway *
Congratulations to these blessed Mummies for winning a January Toddibox each!
1. Winnie Lam
2. Rosalind
3. Shirley
Enjoy!
Do check your email for details and do reply within 48 hours.
If not a new winner will be chosen.
(Winners were picked by random.org)

23 Comments

  1. Activity that I most enjoy with my kids: cycling around
    Age of kids: 3 and 5 years old

  2. Love playing zingo n similar type games with my 3.5 yr old boy, wld love to add more art n craft activities in the mix

  3. I love to go outdoors and explore with my two kiddoes. And yes, i need help with art and craft stuffs!

  4. My boy is an avid scientist. I find it difficult to keep feeding him with more information :)

  5. Kids are aged 2, 4 & 6.
    Activities includes running amok in the neighborhood, cycling, craft & cooking together.

  6. The most enjoyed activity with Tristan is doing theme project which include learning fact, reading related storybooks, field trip/excursion and craft. After which he will present his project for school’s show and tell. He’s 4.5yo now.

  7. Great honest review! I share many of your sentiments.

    Won’t be joining in the draw (though I’ve liked all the pages already i think haha), since will be hosting giveaway too.

  8. My boy loves Art and Craft. It will be fun to have one to try out with him.

  9. My 3yo boy is beginning to appreciate crafts more. Lately, he has been bugging me to do crafts with him. His favourite are sticker based, cut and glue, and threading/sewing. He also likes simple science activities such as ‘what attracts to magnets’, ‘what floats or sinks’, etc. I would love to do more science activities with him but I don’t always have all the required materials on hand.

    Age of kid: 3yo

  10. Enjoy doing craft with my 4-year-old, but find it difficult with another 1.5-year-old trying to grab all the materials.

  11. Looks like fun!

  12. Enjoy heading out with my kids (3yo and 1yo) for them to explore the nature and great outdoors. Indoors-wise, we love doing craft work that can allow us to make, create and have fun together!

  13. I enjoy reading to my twins cos they always surprise me by the questions they ask. I dislike doing art and craft with them unless everything is all nicely prepared cos I’m lousy at art! My kids’ ages are 1, 5 and 5.

  14. The activities that I most enjoy doing with my girl is being creative and fun-loving with any forms of arts & crafts; dirtying our hands with playdoh; and exploring limitless ideas on building with Lego bricks. ;)

    In short, be creative and have fun!!

    Age of kid: 5 years old

  15. Wow! You’re fast! I just got my ToddiBox today n it’s still unopened! Super busy day! :)

  16. My ger is currently 26mths and we enjoy doing craft works and would love to explore further together. It’ll definitely be a great bonding session!

  17. My 3 years old son enjoy doing art n craft & watching art attack. This toolbox’s activity will be great for him . Can’t wait to try the activity in the toolbox with him! :)

  18. Age of kids: 6, 3.5 & 19 mths.

    Both girls loves art & craft but mummy is finding it very difficult nowdays as lil bro is a “destroyer” :P

  19. My 27mth old son Isaac loves pretend play and sing-a-long sessions!Even my 4mth old daughter loves watching her gorgor engaging in these activities!

  20. I enjoying pretend play the most with my little tot of 20 months old e.g. pretending my feet are a slide and she slides down on them~ *whee*

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