February 2016 Little Thinker Box Subscription Box Review

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IMG_2055Kidable Adventures Little Thinker Box is a preschool subscription box for ages 3-6.  The Little Thinker Box includes four components: Read, Create, Explore and Learn. The Learn component is divided into three different levels: Head Start, PreK and Kindergarten. Choose the level that’s right for your child!

IMG_2057The February theme was Penguin.

IMG_2059The box is always packed in a really neat manner — the tissue makes for a nice presentation, and the lesson segments are explained well in the introductory letter to parents.

IMG_2060Although the packages no longer come grouped in plastic bags by components, you could still easily do a component per week, or you could work through them all on a rainy weekend.

All the actual instructions plus the parental guidance is included, along with all the supplies! The Read, Create, Explore, and Learn format was designed based on customer and expert feedback.  I like the bit of structure it lends to the boxes — the numerous activities are more manageable conceptualized in smaller bites.

Read

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This National Geographic Kids Penguins ($3.99) book was great! My son and I both learned a lot about penguins, including where they can be found and differences between species of penguins. During our play later on, he pretended the penguin erasers were king penguins which I thought was pretty cool since before today, he had only heard about emperor penguins.

I also liked that the folks behind Little Thinker Box included some questions to ask once you’ve finished reading the book with your child. The questions were listed on the information card above.

Create

IMG_2068This month’s package included two crafts for the kids to make at home. The first craft my son wanted to try was the 3-D penguin. All supplies for this craft arrived in a self-contained bag.

IMG_2129Both crafts utilized Oriental Trading Company kits similar to those found in the Doodlebugs Busy Bags monthly subscription (also by Kidable Adventures). As my son really enjoys that subscription also, he was excited to make his penguins.

IMG_2131He was very proud of his penguin. My daughter liked it so much, that taking the picture was challenging. She wanted it all for herself!

IMG_2150I love that the penguin stands so well! He’ll make a nice centerpiece on our table for dinner tonight!

IMG_2069While the first craft was very doable, this one is even easier! All that is required is peeling and sticking!

IMG_2123As straightforward as peeling and sticking is, it does provide a fun, easy way to help reinforce fine motor skill development.

IMG_2125I love the cute collection of refrigerator magnets I’m accumulating through all of our craft time!

Explore

IMG_2070The Explore segment encourages creative play.  This month included two fun creative play projects: waddling like a penguin and playing with penguins in a native habitat.

IMG_2109After inflating the cute penguin ball, my son placed it between his two feet and waddled around the house like a penguin. He thought this was very fun.

Next, I mixed together the fake snow and water in a large bowl and spooned it onto the penguin plate. After playing with the fake snow for a while, my son added the penguin erasers to the mix and announced that they were king penguins playing in the snow. Fun! I also love how this activity encouraged sensory exploration in a very engaging way.

IMG_2112My son had so much fun playing with his frolicking king penguins that it was difficult to get him to take a break for a picture. He wanted to keep this around the house, but with a little one running around, I told him we had to throw the fake snow away.

IMG_2121I’m especially grateful that the fake snow is non-toxic, so even if a little bit accidentally falls off the plate before it reaches the garbage can and gets into my daughter’s mouth, it won’t be the end of the world.

Learn

IMG_2065The learn segment brings some additional structure to the theme, focusing the kids on a school-style workbook.  It’s a great tool for focusing the fun in a way that translates well to a more formal academic setting.

The activities this month included  multiple games that required rolling a die, counting, creating a scatterplot, being silly, identifying rhyming words, recognizing patterns, adding, subtracting, counting by fives and figuring out the missing number in addition problems. My son had a lot of fun with the activities! I loved how the booklet introduced him to rolling a die (I have visions of Yahtzee games dancing through my head right now!). The activities ranged in difficulty from Headstart to PreK to Kindergarten, so children could pick and choose which activities were best suited to their own developmental needs. The Little Thinker Box also included a bonus game this month that was similar to twenty questions. While it was fun, my son will need a lot more practice with this type of game before he beats me. Overall, the learn section this month felt as if it were a collection of fun games. We both loved that! I hope there are many more dice games in the coming months! They were awesome!

I love this box and all the updates! The new format is solidly organized and well-planned, the included snack is a nice touch, and, most important, my preschooler was engaged and thinking the whole time we were doing the activities.  Although my son and I tried to complete this box quickly for the sake of this review, this box is designed to provide activities over the course of a month. I’m sure that we will continue to read about penguins and waddle around like penguins for months to come.

Visit Little Thinker Box to find out more or to subscribe!

The Subscription: Little Thinker Box
The Description: Monthly subscription service for children preparing to enter Pre-K or Kindergarten. Each month the child is sent a themed-based activity box that focuses on reading, writing, math, science, and other skills; using fun games, crafts, and experiments. Each month’s theme is a surprise!
The Price: $29.99 per month

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