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    Review: Big Oball

    June 28, 2011 by Brandy Vencel
    This is the first time Timberdoodle has sent us something to review that isn’t in book form…and my are we having fun with it! Introducing the Big Oball:

    Isn’t this the coolest thing you’ve ever seen?

    They also sent us details on their toddler core curriculum package, which I’ll get to in a minute.

    But first: The Big Oball.

    The day this arrived, O.-Age-Two had acted bored all day, so this was Providential to say the least. What I didn’t anticipate was all the trouble this would cause: every child in our family wanted to play with it! So, yes, it is for toddlers, but yes, big kids will like it as well.

    Here is what we like about it {I asked the children for input}:

    • It’s lightweight, so it’s easy for even the littlest ones to toss or roll around.
    • The big holes in the ball make for easy gripping. This means that even babies can “catch” it in a way they can’t catch solid balls. This has probably been the nicest benefit–my 9-year-old can now play catch with his little brother, something he’s anticipated for a long time.
    • The ball seems indestructable. This is something that you have probably noticed if you’ve ever acquired toys from Timberdoodle. They are very strict about quality–toys we buy for little ones won’t be broken by the little ones, or by the big ones who borrow them! This ball can be smashed down, but instantly regains its shape when you let go. We’ve also let visiting babies chew on it, with no visible wear.
    • E.-Age-Nine is fascinated by the color patterns. He likes to watch it spin and see how the colors all fit together. He is naturally engineer-minded.
    • O.-Age-Two says, “Ah like mah ball!” {I don’t know where he gets the southern accent.}

    My only complaint is that it really got my toddler throwing…so then I had to create some boundaries on where in the house he was allowed to toss it around!

    He loves this ball, loves having a toy that belongs only to him, and loves sharing it with his older brother and sisters. I definitely have it on my short list for toddler birthday party gifts!

    Timberdoodle Toddler Core Curriculum
    When they sent the ball to us for reviewing, Timberdoodle was also kind enough to include one of their toddler core curriculum planning folders so that I could see all of what they are suggesting for toddlers. I have found that as I have more students needing lessons, I also have more need for things to occupy my little ones. This is a fabulous list of ideas…and it also reminded me of things I already have in my cupboards that I should get out in August for the start of the new school year.

    Here is what is on their toddler curriculum list that we already purchased and have in our home:

    • Lauri A-Z Puzzles. We have these in both upper and lower case. I used them with Daughters A. and Q. as a sort of game when they were learning their letters. Toddler O. gets these out from time to time, but I have to be careful to watch him as he tends to lose the smaller pieces if I’m not careful. My daughters still play with these regularly, even though they are on to real reading lessons now.
    • Wedgits Starter Tote. Q.-Age-Four was given this for Christmas a couple years ago. Initially, she cried because she thought it was a toy for boys! However, comma, she informed me yesterday that Wedgits are some of her very favorite things {right up there with homemade chili}. These days, O.-Age-Two plays along; the two of them sit at our little toddler table for two and build their creations in {relative} peace.
    • FantaColor Junior. This is another old Christmas gift that has passed the test of time. The only warning I have about this is that if your child is still putting toys in his mouth, this is not the right toy for him! Son O. choked on a couple of the pieces before I realized that he just wasn’t old enough for it. These days he is playing with it the right way. I think I’ll get it out today once it is too hot for playing outside.

    In all, their core curriculum is a great place to go if your toddler mystifies, befuddles, or otherwise challenges your limited brain power {as mine does me}.

    Legal Disclosure:

    As a member of Timberdoodle’s Blogger Review Team I received a free Big Oball and Toddler Core Curriculum Planning Folder in exchange for a frank and unbiased review.

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  • Reply Brandy @ Afterthoughts June 29, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    Well, I’m glad to know this ball has a long future with us. πŸ™‚

    And to think, Rahime, that you will have a new little one to play with it sometime soon!

    Phyllis, This is a highly sophisticated literary device.

    HA. πŸ˜‰

    I think I started doing that when I was in a silly mood back in college and I never really got over it. πŸ™‚

  • Reply Phyllis June 29, 2011 at 11:13 am

    I want to add to your IFAQs: why do you say “However, comma”? πŸ™‚

  • Reply Rahime June 28, 2011 at 8:39 pm

    We’ve got a ball like that around here. It’s a big hit with the toddlers (and older kids…eh, ‘Chung) that pass through here, and has lasted forever.

  • Reply Kansas Mom June 28, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    We bought that ball (or one eerily similar) back when First Son was a baby. It’s still one of our favorite toys, four babies and seven years later! It was great to take to the park when we lived in the city because it was easy to wash and hooked right on the handle of the stroller – just thread it through the holes – so we didn’t have to dig through the basket underneath or carry it in a bag.

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