Sago Sago Toys Mini Plush Gift Pack by Sago Sago- Review

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What we love…

soft toddler friendly toys that bring apps to life and encourage imaginative play.

What we’d love to see…

Crayons and markers to decorate the outside of the box

Summary

Fun toddler and preschool safe toys with no eyes that allow you to have imaginary play.

Our Rating

 

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Bring your apps to life with soft cuddly toys from Sago Sago!  These 6 in plush toys feature Harvey the Dog, Jinja the Cat, Robin the Bird, and Jack the Rabbit and are the animals featured in apps.  They are soft and fun for toddlers and preschoolers – even my first grader liked seeing the toys bring the apps to life!  The animals have no “eyes” or items that can be pulled off which makes them toddler safe and means you don’t have to worry about them going in your child’s mouth.

My toddler was fascinated with the box – he loved opening and shutting the cardboard door and playing with the toys when it arrived.  My older son decided to decorate it for him with markers and crayons.  The animals are soft and easily cleanable.  The directions state you can use cold water, but I also used baby wipes with lots of success after a spill of juice on the dog.   We also used them to name the different animals and colors as well as the sounds they made which was great for receptive and expressive language!

In terms of improvements, including coloring pages, or crayons or makers inside the box would be great. My kids both knew about Sago Sago and I had one of the apps on my iPad when they arrived. There are hang tags which give you a code for a free Sago Mini Friends app which you can install on your device.  There was no advertising of the apps inside the box, and another child might not have made that connection.  My older son also wanted to see crayons or markers inside the box so he could begin his decorating right away!

Overall, these are fun plush toys that will bring your kids hours of fun – my kids loved playing with them and going in and out of the house.

 

NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.

Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her two sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. My older son loves technology and loves testing out the “latest and newest” apps and tech. I love sharing information about apps and products with others to help them make decisions without feeling overwhelmed with all of the choices.

Pet Portrait Studio Magnetic Playset by Build & Imagine- Review

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What we love…

Bright, colorful, sturdy magnetic panel and wood dolls encourage open-ended play in creating both the physical toy and storytelling with the characters.

What we’d love to see…

A storage bag for the magnetic accessories

Summary

The Pet Portrait Studio Magnetic Playset by Build & Imagine is a great toy to encourage children to  both build and use their imagination.

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My daughter is great at imaginary play – her dolls are always talking away to each other, her twin brother on the other hand loves to build. I love to find toys for them that work for them to play together and that encourage her to build and him to exercise his imagination. Build & Imagine, make a series of toys that encourage children to do just that – first they get to build with the magnetic playset, then use it for storytelling and imaginative play. I recently tested out one of their newest playsets- the Pet Portrait Studio.

The set comes with 10 magnetic panels- 6 square, 2 right-angle triangles and 2 isosceles triangles. Each panel is double sided with different designs on each side. The panels can be put together in any configuration the child likes to create a StoryWall which acts as backdrop for imaginary play. They can use all the panels or just a few, create a one story building or multi-story. The square panels have pictures of indoor and outdoor scenes on them including an art studio, a grooming salon, a darkroom and a photography studio. There is no right or wrong way to put them together, each time they play  children can create different combinations.

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Once they have built their StoryWall the child gets to add characters to the story. The set comes with 2 wooden dress-up dolls, a boy and a girl, and 4 wooden pets- 2 dogs and 2 cats. There are lots of magnetic accessories too. As well as using the accessories to dress the pets and animals the child can also use them to decorate their studio- each panel has a star on one side of it, and the magnets will stick to the starred surfaces. The accessories include clothes, a pet bed, leash, grooming and art supplies. There are also lots more magnetic pets that can stick to the walls- including dogs, a bunny, a snake, a lizard and a toucan.

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With all the different animals and pet-themed rooms and accessories this set is great for creating stories about pets.

The magnetic panels and stand up wooden dolls seem sturdy and well-made and are very bright and colorful. I found that a few of the accessories, such as the artist palette and grooming brush, that were designed to stick near the edge of a doll were a little tricky to keep in place. However, the magnets stuck very well to the panels and bodies of the animals and dolls. The one criticism I have is that its easy to lose all the small magnetic pieces so I’d like to see a storage bag included. A nice feature is that all the different play sets can be used together so if you own more than 1 Build & Imagine set you can create even more play possibilities. I would love to also see more magnetic accessory sets sold as an add on item.

 

Overall, the Pet Portrait Studio Magnetic Playset by Build & Imagine is a great toy to encourage children to  both build and use their imagination. They use their left brain to build the backdrop and their right brain in acting out imaginary stories. I like that it is something that will appeal to both my son and daughter and that they can play with together.

Designed for ages 4+ (and not suitable for younger children due to small pieces), this is a toy my 8 year olds still enjoy.

Available from Build & Imagine, Amazon & specialty retailers. Price: $49.99

NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.

 

 

 

Mary is originally from England but now lives in California with her husband, dog, cat and three children. Mary and her family love Apple products and own an iPad2, iPad3, iPad Mini, iTouch, iPhone5 and several MacBook Pros. They also love cub scouts, skiing, camping and hiking. The family iPads are also used for therapy for their daughters Apraxia (speech disorder).

Giveaway for Sammy the Bear – Bluetooth enabled interactive plush toy from Bluebee Pals

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To celebrate their inclusion in our 12 Great Gifts for Tots to Teen Christmas Gift Guide Bluebee Pals have generously given us one Bluebee Pal Sammy the Bear to giveaway!

 

BlueBee Pals are totally adorable stuffed toys that connect to your iPad, iPhone or other device via Bluetooth. They act as a speaker for the music or app playing on your device and can also be used as a speakerphone for your iPhone or other SmartPhone. The animal’s mouth even moves in time to what is being said/ sung to give the illusion that the animal is actually talking!

You can read our full review here

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Giveaway

If you would like to win a Bluebee Pal Sammy Bear, please enter via the widget below. Winners will be emailed and must contact The iMums within 48 hours to claim their prize. This giveaway is open to USA ONLY and a valid mailing address is required to claim the prize. Please ensure you have read and understand our Terms & Conditions. Good luck!

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Mary is originally from England but now lives in California with her husband, dog, cat and three children. Mary and her family love Apple products and own an iPad2, iPad3, iPad Mini, iTouch, iPhone5 and several MacBook Pros. They also love cub scouts, skiing, camping and hiking. The family iPads are also used for therapy for their daughters Apraxia (speech disorder).

Review and Giveaway for Flash & Thunder Interactive Game and Graphic Novel from INVICTA Challenge

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What we love…

Encourages kids to read, teaches history, inspires leadership skills

Summary

I think Flash & Thunder is a great gift, it will appeal mostly to boys but some of the other INVICTA Challenge stories in the pipeline will appeal to both boys and girls. The story is based on a real-life episode during WW2 and whilst playing the child will learn history, get an insight into leadership skills and how tough it can be to make the right decision. I love that there are so many elements to the game- the detailed action figure, studying the mission cards, reading the maps, reading the story, making choices, watching historical videos and playing the video game.A great value for $34.99 !

Our Rating

 

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Flash & Thunder is the first Interactive Game and Graphic Novel from  INVICTA Challenge. INVICTA Challenge is on a mission to engage kids in reading and inspire them through telling stories about real life American heroes.

Flash & Thunder is set during WW2 and tells the story of Turner Turnbull, a Native American paratrooper, and his incredible leadership during D-Day.

When they open the box the player will find a card describing the INVICTA Challenge, an operations packet with 15 mission cards, 2 maps and a detailed posable 6″ action figure.

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INVICTA is Latin for “the unconquered” and an acronym for the 7 pillars of leadership: Integrity, Nobility, Valor, Initiative, Curiosity, Tenacity and Accountability.  The mission of the company is to tell real life leadership stories and inspire kids to become leaders.

The player must study the operations packet and the maps before reading the novel. The mission cards are glossy full color 2 sided cards that cover  a lot of background information. The player learns about the Nazis, the history of WW2 leading up to D-Day and the planned Allied Invasion. They also learn about the troops on both sides that are involved in the story, their gear and weapons, how they fight, as well as  learning about some of the characters they will encounter. As well as color pictures and maps the cards also have copies of historical black and white photos from the time.

As they read the story they need to make decisions that decide the fate of Turner and his men and affect the course of history. They have to take into consideration what they have learned about the enemy, the terrain and the big picture of the invasion plans. Throughout the book they need to make decisions and try to think like a leader as they replay decisions Turnbull and other leaders had to face. Will the mission succeed or fail? That depends on how well they have studied the operations packet. If they make the right decision the story moves forward, if they make the wrong decision they see the consequences of their action and the mission fails, they can then go back a step to make a different choice.

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After studying the operations packet and reading the graphic novel they can go online to INVICTAChallenge.com. They have created nearly 30 videos that bring the operations packet to life putting the story in historical perspective and showing video clips from the time. They can also play an interactive video game which is an animated digital version of the graphic novel. The online content will become available in app form soon.

INVICTA-Challenge_two-paratroopers-on-ipad_WEBOverall, I think Flash & Thunder is a great gift, it will appeal mostly to boys but some of the other INVICTA Challenge stories in the pipeline will appeal to both boys and girls. The story is based on a real-life episode during WW2 and whilst playing the child will learn history, get an insight into leadership skills and how tough it can be to make the right decision. I love that there are so many elements to the game- the detailed action figure, studying the mission cards, reading the maps, reading the story, making choices, watching historical videos and playing the video game. I love products that encourage children to read and with this game if they want to succeed they can’t just jump into playing the video game they really need to read the mission cards and study the maps first to guide them in the decision process. A great value for $34.99 !

Available from Barnes & Noble, Amazon and the National WW2 Museum.

Note from INVICTA Challenge: In honor of our first hero, we helped create a Turner Turnbull Scholarship with the Chahta Foundation, a nonprofit that works alongside the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. We donate a portion of our game sales to this scholarship supporting a Choctaw Nation student in his or her 2nd year of college.

 

Giveaway

If you would like to win a Flash & Thunder Interactive Game and Graphic Novel please enter via the widget below. Winners will be emailed and must contact The iMums within 48 hours to claim their prize. This giveaway is open to USA only and a valid mailing address is required to claim the prize. Please ensure you have read and understand our Terms & Conditions. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.

 

 

 

Mary is originally from England but now lives in California with her husband, dog, cat and three children. Mary and her family love Apple products and own an iPad2, iPad3, iPad Mini, iTouch, iPhone5 and several MacBook Pros. They also love cub scouts, skiing, camping and hiking. The family iPads are also used for therapy for their daughters Apraxia (speech disorder).

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