I recently had the fantastic opportunity to try out some products in my classroom from the company called MindWare. MindWare shares a site with Oriental Trading. Which I think is pretty cool! This company has the slogan for their awesome products that says: “Brainy toys for kids of all ages!”. After trying 3 products out, I have proven them absolutely CORRECT!!
I love to change up my early morning work time in my class with activities that the kids can manipulate and use to get their brains in gear for the rest of the day.
I hate to say this, but I’ll just put it out there….
I am sometimes not successful with this,…something that seems so perfect in my head, doesn’t always turn out the way I’d like
when I pulled these brainy toys out, my kinder cubs were so excited and were looking forward to the rest of their day!! YAY!!
One of the fun toys I put out were the Keva Brain Builders and Brain Builders Jr. . These inexpensive wood puzzles come with 20 small pine planks and 30 puzzle cards. The Jr. set has 20 cards but each side has a puzzle…so that makes 40 puzzles! The pine planks are very high quality and smooth. The planks and cards come compact in a little zippered bag. This makes it so easy to keep the entire set stored and ready to use anytime!
Now, if Brain Builders had been around when I was young, “Boy! Howdy!” (as my momma would say) I would have been so much better at putting together furniture and other things as an adult!! This is because the puzzle cards have 2D diagrams on one side and the solution on the other. The object of the puzzle is to turn these 2D diagrams into 3D objects. Then, you are able to check your work by looking at the solution side.
The 2 pics below show the 2D side and the solution side of a card. The cards are labeled beginner, intermediate and expert.
Brain Builders are for ages 7 and over. However, my little kinder cubs didn’t have too much difficulty with the beginner level cards.
I love the Brain Builders set. I think it would also make a great gift for a kid who really loves to build.
I could even see a child incorporating the objects he or she builds into playing with Barbies or any kind of action figures.
The Brain Builders Jr. Set was perfect for my kinder cubs and I found many ways to incorporate them throughout my instruction.
The students could build letters, numbers, and shapes using the planks. I also like to incorporate them with my STEM bins.
The cards have pictures on both sides. There are a total of 40 puzzles. My students really enjoyed duplicating these pictures with the planks.
Another way that I could use some of the cards, was to show a card to a student and have him/her count the number of planks he/she can see in the picture. Then, the students could count out that number of planks before assembling the object.
Yes! These Brain Builder Sets were a hit in my classroom!!
But wait!! There’s more!!
MindWare also sent me Pattern Play!!
My kinders were immediately drawn to this unique puzzle because of the colors! Again, all of the blocks that come with this set are high quality! There are 40 cards that children can look at and try to duplicate using the unique blocks.
When I first got Pattern Play out, I had to get my hands on it too!!
There were 2 sweet kiddos helping me! It is a terrific puzzle to teach spatial relationships. Because all of the blocks had angles, the kids had to really think about which way to turn the angle on the block so that it would fit correctly. Not only were they thinking about that, but they had to also think about the size and the color of the block to use!!
Wow!! What a way to wake up their brains so early in the morning!
Then when we got finished with the entire puzzle, we were so proud of ourselves and we were giving each other a high five!
I just love those kind of moments!!
But the teacher in me couldn’t stop there….
We had to discuss what shapes did we see throughout the puzzle.
The best way for me to store this brainy toy is by leaving the last puzzle intact and putting it into the box until it gets used again!
After having the opportunity to try these products out, I will definitely be looking for some more Mindware products to add to my “brainy toy” collection!
Click HERE to get to MindWare.com!
Click HERE to find some lesson plans that go along with MindWare Brainy Toys!!
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Please be sure and follow MindWare on Facebook: www.facebook.com/MindWareToys
And on Twitter: www.twitter.com/MindWareToys
And on Instagram, too!! : www.instagram.com/MindWareToys
Because I loved these products so much, I am giving away 1 of the Brain Builders or Pattern Play sets.
Just enter my rafflecoptor below:
Lastly, please know: “This review is based strictly on my opinion. I was provided the sample free of charge by the company to provide my honest review. No other type of compensation was received. All ideas and opinions are my own.”
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