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Spiral-Designer – Creativity for Little Ones reviews a craft toy from Ravensburger.

Spiral Designer 1Most of us are familiar with Ravensburger puzzles, but did you know they also make artistic items as well?  The “Spiral-Designer” is one such item and it will awaken the inner creative side of your child’s personality, keeping them occupied with new design ideas for hours. The possibilities are truly limitless with this amazing all-in-one kit. The sturdy colorful 10½” x 10½” x 2¼” box contains all the supplies your young artist might need including 1 drawing frame, 1 template ring with 4 design discs, 1 frame for the mini Mandala Template, 1 mini Mandala Template (such designs are known for their geometric circular pattern), 2 felt tip pens and 10 sheets of drawing paper.


Posted in Crafts

4M Crystal Growing Kit — Sparkling Crystals Form Right Before Your Eyes reviews a science kit from 4M.

This is a great little “Crystal Growing Kit” that you can find on Amazon for around $10. The key here is to follow the directions very carefully, which not only ensures the success of your crystal growing but it provides a strong foundation for learning about science and teaching kids to follow instructions.

We tested this kit with a six year old and an eight year old, and I would say it was perfect for them, although you could even go a little younger if you are prepared to assist with the project. Everything you need is included in the kit except for water. We began by dissolving the powdery crystal mixture in hot water and letting it sit for 15 minutes. Then we transferred that to the clear crystal display case and waited another 30 minutes for everything to settle. Next we put in the multi-colored crystal seeds, and according to our watch, the preparation process took about 60 minutes.


Posted in Building, Crafts, Learning, Novelty

Aquabeads – Just Add Water reviews a creative playset from International Playthings LLC.

Aquabeads 2

“Aquabeads,” originally developed in Japan, are multi-colored small beads that when pushed together form unique and clever designs, all with the help of a little water. There are numerous playsets available, each very simple to use, and a perfect match for children ages 4 and up. Best of all, there is no mixing or messy parts needed when using this colorful toy.

The playsets include special layout trays with templates to guide the designs. Kids simply arrange the beads using a template, spray with water (sprayer enclosed), let it dry and presto you have a creation. Somehow the water magically makes the beads stick together. Another nice feature is the templates can be used again and again. The possibilities are endless when you can choose from so many different playsets, and even purchase bead refill packs. The sets are very affordable, generally costing no more than $19.95, with refill packs going for $7.99.


Posted in Crafts

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