As a relatively “new” mom (my son is now almost 15 months old, side note: where has the time gone?!?) I’m constantly worried about whether or not he is getting stimulated or challenged enough. I can see it happening right before my eyes: he is determined to figure out how things work, why something falls when he throws it, what sounds a particular object makes. I take my job as his first educator very seriously and fully understand the trials of finding products that both entertain and encourage learning and development.
Play, to me, is a huge part of the developmental process. I find he understands things better if we are playing a game or with a toy. This fall, we were approached by Galt Toys, a well-respected and established product line based in the UK. Galt has recently become available in the US, ideal for parents and families looking for the latest in educational and developmental toys and gifts.
Galt just launched The Galt Toys Dr. Miriam collection, a collaboration with UK parenting guru Dr. Miriam Stoppard. This collection of First Years toys for babies and toddlers consists of 21 wooden, plastic, and soft toys designed to encourage learning through play with each toy offering a host of engaging features for little hands and minds to explore. The collection includes traditional favorites such as stacking rings, baby walkers, and activity games.
To introduce us to the line, we received the Pull Along Puppy, First Farmyard Puzzle and Stacking Tower for review.
A wooden puppy with a springy tail and cheerful face, The Pull Along Puppy encourages balance, coordination and independence as the child walks along pulling the puppy. All wood is from renewable sources, which is pretty fantastic, and Johnny seemed to enjoy pulling his new pet up and down the hallway. Really adorable and pretty affordable, coming in at $25 (amazon!)
I have to say, as cute as the puppy was, the biggest joy for my son was in the Stacking Tower. With 7 cups to stack and nest (and a fun flower to put on top), I totally became THAT MOM oohing and aahing over how intelligent and curious my genius son was, placing the cups one on top of the other. They are meant to encourage manual dexterity and hand-eye coordination, which I not only saw firsthand but also made me feel like I was really making a difference in his development during this stage.
He was also totally obsessed with the First Farmyard Puzzle (his very first puzzle!). He seems to immediately understand the process of putting the puzzles in their correct spots and the easy to grip handles made fitting them in their place a breeze. The wood tray was light and not cumbersome at all. I was worried they’d be thrown like a weapon at first, but he was entertained for quite awhile by the lift-out animals and was surprisingly gentle with them.
The line is incredibly impressive and having a personal tester at home to try them out made me a new loyal follower. I’m looking forward to trying other products in their line, especially as he gets older. Another bonus: each toy comes with a book written by Dr. Miriam on how to most effectively use the product. It’s all very well-thought out and high quality.
Galt has several other collections for all ages including Puzzles, Arts Crafts & Activities, Science & Discovery games, and an entire Girl Club collection with fun things like Fashion Sewing Kits and jewelry crafts. Must have items for any Christmas list!
Galt Toys sent me these products for review free of charge. My opinions, however, are entirely and completely my own. And my son’s. If he could speak.