“ No ink, no brushes no paint to run! Amazing drawing toy which uses water instead of ink. Hours of no mess fun. Two pens included for double the fun. Large mat folds away for easy storage ncludes letters and numbers learning fun too. Manufacturer's recommended age 18 months +. „
Aquadraw is a range of drawing mats for toddlers. The mats are often referred to as Aquadoodle.
There are various character mats available including Thomas the Tank and Peppa Pig. The mats can also be bought in a smaller sized pack which is intended for travel use.
The classic aquadraw mat doesn't feature specific characters. It is suitable for children over the age of 36months and the box contains an Aquadoodle drawing mat and a pen. The mat is ready to be used straight from the box and all that is required is some water for the pen.
Basically this is a large, plastic backed mat which is mainly white. It features various coloured pictures as a border including a ball, frog etc which are arranged in alphabetical order. One side of the mat has counting activities. Within the mat, there is a huge drawing area for free style drawing. The letters of the alphabet are traced onto the mat in upper and lower case lettering and a picture under each set of letters. The numbers up to 10 are there aswell.
The purpose of this mat is to provide drawing fun but without the mess. Your child is presented with a pen which needs filled up with water. They can then get to work on drawing and colouring on the mat. The water activates something inside the pen and on the mat which changes it to a blue colour which becomes visible on the mat. Unlike a piece of paper, the mat can be reused as the colour fades and disappears.
Current prices for the classic version :
Amazon UK - £19.30
Argos - £19.86
Ebay - £15.99
As a young toddler, my son hated using crayons and pencils (he has grown out of that now). I loved drawing and colouring as a child so wanted to encourage him to do the same. We bought our Aquadraw classic in December 2010 when our son was 19months old. He still uses it 2years on and it was definently a good purchase. Now he prefers to draw on proper paper and present his masterpieces to myself and other family though the mat is still dragged out when my nephew visits as he cannot be trusted with crayons in my house after scribbling all over my sons bedroom wall!
Anyway, at the time we wanted to get the Thomas version but settled on this one after spotting it for around £10 on ebay at the time. I feel anything up to £15.00 is an acceptable price for this mat as it has been well used in our home and well appreciated. The mat itself is huge and if you are short on floor space, this may not be a good choice. It is easy to use on carpet, wooden flooring on placed on a table.
I don't have a measuring tape to give the exact size but I will note that this mat is rectangular in shape and spacious enough for 2 toddlers to comfortably draw without bumping into each other. There is only one pen supplied though we have another from a mini mat collection so both boys can draw together. The mat is well made and you would expect that from a brand such as Tomy. It is reasonably thick and durable.
~Time To Draw~
This mat has grown with my son. From the moment we spread it out on the floor he loved it. The pen is long and chunky but easy for a toddler to grasp and draw with. The good thing about the pen (though it confused me at first) is that the top screws off in a different direction from what you would expect. I suppose this is to stop a child from constantly emptying it! The pen doesn't require much water in order to be full up and lasts well when full. This is a good thing as it means I can watch Boo drawing for a while without needing to constantly run back and forth to the tap to fill it up.
So at first my son simply scribbled on the mat and created his own little pictures of Mummy and teddy bear. The nib of the pen holds the water well and it flows nicely without being leaky or too drippy. The mat does of course get wet but not to the point of being saturated. My son has tried and tried again to draw on Mummy using his magic water pen..oh and the walls too but to no avail. It really isn't messy at all but gives my son the feeling of painting and drawing at the same time as the nib of the pen glides effortlessly across the mat.
There is plenty of space to draw various pictures on this mat and at first, the blue colouring comes through quite strongly. It starts to dry quickly but takes a while to fade. At first, all the pictures would fade completely but the mat has retained some of the blue colouring and no longer looks as fresh and white as it once did. If your child is concerned about losing a picture then this sort of mat isn't for them as the pictures do not last and the nib doesn't provide accurate enough lines for detailed pictures in my opinion. This never used to bother my son but now he takes more pride in his drawings so he isn't so keen on using the chunky pen. The smaller pen from the mini mats is a little finer and more accurate.
The pictures that are outlined inside the mat frame are varied and reflect the letter shown above them. My son likes to colour them in and various colours show up when the pen touches them. They were vibrant at first but like everything, start to fade. The pictures relate to everyday things such as a dog, a ladder, a car etc and are realistic enough for my son to recognise them even from a young age. Mummy can also draw with Boo using the spare pen - fun times! I personally like to flick the pen creating pretty blue droplets on the mat but Boo doesn't like me doing this :(
My son used to be happy drawing for a good 30mins and would get lost in his pictures. He was amazed by the fact the pictures dried and disappeared and he calls this his magic mat which I find rather cute. It is a good option when your child decides on a spur of the moment that they have to draw and is much easier than getting the crayon box out.
~Time To Learn~
The mat would look a little boring if it were not for the complimenting pictures around the edges. I feel that the pictures, numbers and alphabet really do add something extra to the mat. It is possible for my son to have fun drawing but also be learning something at the same time. The permanent pictures around the edges are very bright and stand out from the mat. Again, they reflect images which a young child would recognise such as an ice cream cone, a monkey and a snail. My son learned these quickly and still likes to point them out. We can play a game to break up the drawing - Mummy will point to a few random pictures and ask Boo to name the thing in the picture.
The alphabet letters are quite faint on the mat and even when drawn over, they do not stand out well at all. I think as a parent, I would have preferred them to be more noticeable. My son knows the alphabet well though mainly from me teaching him and also a book that we use. It is good to see the letters in upper and lower case to give a bit more variation. The number corner is another excellent addition to the mat and the pictures above the numbers add another game. My son can count up the different images which include seven shells, four fish etc.
Whenever our mat has been used, I leave it out to dry. It can be folded straight away but I find this stops some of the colour from disappearing and makes the mat look grubby. Our mat is folded down fairly flat and stored under the toy box ready for the next use. Despite being large when folded out, this mat is lightweight and can be folded down neatly. This makes it ideal to take when visiting family as it keeps my son occupied and Papa can join in too!
My son does like this mat but moreso when he was younger. I would say it is perfect for children from 18months or when they take an interest in scribbling and it really does save your walls and carpets from being targetted! It was definently a top purchase and has lasted well. It hasn't torn or been damaged and the pen is still going strong. It has fun and educational values and my son enjoys scribbling on it. He won't use paint so this is the next best thing - well more watercolour than paint but still great fun!
Overall we can recommend the Aquadraw classic mat.
Thanks for reading!
I first came across the aquadoodle drawing mat when a friend's child was playing with it and thought what a wonderful idea it was. It has since become a favourite of ours to buy for nieces, nephews and friend's children at birthdays and Christmas.
The Aquadoodle mat is made by Tomy. The idea behind the toy is to teach children about drawing with no mess (well nothing that can cause damage anyway!) The toy retails at around £20-£25 depending on which variety you opt for and if you can find any decent offers at the time of purchase. There are also smaller travel versions available for a cheaper price. We have only ever purchased the Classic Drawing Toy as here and this costs £25.
The toy is very simple, in the box you get the Aquadoodle mat and the Aquadoodle pen. The concept of the toy is that you fill the pen with water and then draw on the mat to create shapes and pictures. After a few minutes this fades and your creation disappears and the mat can be used over and over again. The toy is suitable for children from 18 months but, in my opinion, this really depends on their ability. We have bought it for children at 2-2 ½ and they have loved it.
The mat is fairly large - this really needs to be used on the floor. It is large enough for most 2 year olds to lie down on, which means plenty of 'draw around me' demands! Around the border of the mat there are colourful pictures printed on. Each of these begins with a different letter of the alphabet and this works round from A to Z on the mat. Underneath each of these you can colour using the water pen and reveal the corresponding letter of the alphabet, in capitals and small letters. As with the drawing, once dry this fades again and can be coloured to reveal once more.
The pen included is a lovely size to be gripped by little hands - suitably round and fat but not too big. It is relatively easy for an adult to take apart and fill with water but seals securely so that it doesn't leak or the child can't pull it apart. When drawing, the water moves from the pen at a nice pace, it doesn't gush or trickle, so no frustration here either. It also lasts well, so you are not inundated with requests to refill the pen. There really is very little mess involved with this toy, unless your toddler learns to 'flick' the pen to create droplets on the mat - then you may get spots of water around your room!
This is a lovely toy that children seem to really enjoy to play with, loving the 'magic' of making the letters appear and then watching as they disappear again. It can also be used as a learning aid, using the letters and pictures around the border to help children learn the alphabet. It also helps children learn to grip the pen and draw. It is well made, with the material mat lasting really well with no fraying or discolouring. The pen also seems pretty durable, withstanding any drops and bumps well. The one improvement that I would make is include two pens in the box rather than just the one. By including just one it means that children can only play alone and any can cause arguments between siblings/with other children and there is plenty of room on the mat for two to play. I believe that extra pens can be purchased separately however.
In summary a lovely toy that can encourage children to be creative without you having to worry about the mess, and something they can learn from too.
These mats are brilliant both my children totally adore the mats. I do too no mess other then a spilage of water every now and then.
The children think its great watching the mat change from white to blue when water applied then they love watching it dry so they can start all over again. We have had this product for a good 2 years now and as deffiently been used well. It looks as though it will last another 2 years too. A slight tint of blue to the mat now it as been used a lot but is still more then good enough to use.
My elsdest loves using stamps on the mat and making patterns. We also have the disney princess one its like magic. Amazing products for children of all ages including adults, no mess and resuable without going through pages of paper and lots of paint.
My little man is going through a real drawing stage at the moment - we have art sets, paper, pens and crayons coming out of our ears at the moment. However as he is not quite 2 and a half we have had quite a few mishaps, with things being coloured that perhaps shouldn't be (thankfully most thinks come good with a good scrub or a cleaning wipe!!) After conferring with some of my other Mummy friends I found this was all normal and my child was not becoming a hybrid Picasso devil, but one of them kindly donated a Tomy Aquadraw which her child no longer used.
I must admit that Aquadraw was a toy that had completely passed me by - the drawing phenomenon seemed to come on completely overnight - so I had no idea how it worked. You get a large plastic mat, probably just over a square metre in size, and two magic pens. All you need to do is fill the pens with tap water, and draw away on the mat. The water comes out like blue ink on the mat, and doesn't run or make any sort of mess. The pictures last around 15 minutes before drying away - this can be handy when little man doesn't want me to play with him and gets the hump with any of my scribbling!! The only down side is that you can't save any of the pictures.
Around the edge of the mat are lots of brightly covered pictures in alphabetical order - Jelly, Koala, Lorry etc. Underneath them on the mat the letters are imprinted in magic ink, so that if you colour over them the letters show up - this will be great for when he is older and he can copy the letters, but at the moment we are still at random scribbles! We do a bit of identifying the pictures, and talking around the letters and I think it is sinking in, but mainly I have just used this mat to let his imagination run wild, and I am safe in the knowledge I can get on with a few jobs without worrying that the house will be decorated while my back is turned.
Luckily ours was a freebie, but this particular mat is available from Argos and other retailers for around £20. The mat is thick and tear proof, and I think we are more likely to lose the pens than break them. This is one toy that is played with everyday without fail, often several times, so I would say it is excellent value for money. My only gripe with was it is that the pictures are only one colour, but I have just seen a Rainbow Aquadraw, which comes out multicoloured and with stampers and paint brushes as well as the pens, so this is one we will look out for in the sales. You can also get character ones like Disney and Thomas. If you have a little one that likes to decorate things he shouldn't then I would definitely recommend one of these, and if anyone knows how to get blue felt pen off of Pink Boots then please let me know!!
For christmas my son got the Tomy Aquadraw Classic. At the moment it is £19.79 from Argos. After thinking long and hard about a present which is fun and educational (that he doesn't already have) the aquadraw seemed like the perfect solution.
It is designed for children aged 18 months and over but as my son started scribbling earlier I got it for him anyway, all it means is that I have to watch that he doesn't suck the water pen.
The mat is a large plastic sheet that has colourful images around the edge. Three sides have objects from A to Z, i.e. Aeroplane, ball, cat... with the word written underneath them. the fourth side has the numbers one to ten (written) with the corresponding number of objects above the word, the name of the images also start with the first letter of each number, i.e. One Orange, Two Trains -and there are two trains above the number Two etc. (I cant think of an easier way to explain it I am sorry..but either way it's colourful, fun and educational) The images around the edge are fun by themselves; they allow me to point to the images and try to teach my son to say them. So far he has learnt 'ball' and tries saying 'fish'.
Now for the magical bit. The mat comes with a plastic pen with a fat nib. It's roughly the size of one of those thick easy grip crayons, so that it too is in fact easy to grip. The 'pen' is filled with water by twisting the nib and simply filling with tap water. The twist action on the pen is the opposite was to normal (lefty Lucy....) so that even if your child has mastered the art of unscrewing things they will be stumped by this. I was stumped to be honest and even though it is clearly written on the pen I still twist the wrong way and eventually realize why its not opening ha ha.
Once ready you can use the water pen to draw on the mat. The water reacts with the mat leaving a blue mark acting like the ink from a real pen. There is a big space in the middle for your child to draw or scribble whatever he likes. The image stays for a while and eventually fades away so they can draw all over it again. The magic pen means that I can happily leave my son to scribble away and it doesn't matter if he goes off of the mat and starts on the carpet...or his face!
Around the edge -under the images I described earlier- are MORE images that are faded out. Its Only when you add water that they come to life and you can see their bright colours. Again these images correspond with the images on the outer edge, This time there are letters in upper and lower case to go with the image and numbers around the other edge. Again, this lets you teach your child, not only can you teach him numbers and words but also he can trace the letters and learn how to write.
I am very impressed with this mat. The water dries in just the right amount of time. It does get dirty quite quickly though, we have only played with it a handful of times but already there are a few marks and its not due to us not taking care of it I'm not sure why its got dirty to be honest. Other than that I love it, I would recommend it to anyone with children...or even those without. I've found myself stealing the pen off my son to have a go ha ha its very relaxing
Tomy Aquadraw is a wonderful invention especially for people with kids as messy as mine. This Aquadraw set allows kids to draw magic pictures with nothing more than water and it is mess free.
The Aquadraw set consists of a 90cm squared mat which can be placed on the floor or on a table (any table because remember there is no mess), there is also two pens which you fill with water, then when the kids draw on the magic mat pictures or words that they draw or write appear in blue colour right in front of their eyes as if by magic.
Kids can also have a small bowl of water with them if you choose and they can then dip their fingers or hands in the water and use them to draw, my kids have a set of sponge stampers (not part of the set) that they love to use with this mat.
It only costs around £20 and is very durable so you are getting a toy that will keep the little ones entertained for a long time at a good price, oh and did I mention there is no mess??
The box states this is suitable for kids 18 months and over which I would say is just about right although my son did get this for his first birthday from someone and was able to scribble away on it no problem.
It is over a year old now and still going strong and the kids have never got bored of it, so it was £20 well spent by whoever spent it!!
Aqua draw is a fantastic concept, dont ask me how it works i havent got a clue, and please dont spoil the magic for me by telling me.
Our aqua draw cost me £19.99 from argos, in the box you get a large, dinner table sized drawing mat, two pens and two stencils.
The mat has the alphabet and numbers around the edges which i think is great for children to be able to copy and learn from.
The idea with this is magic, you fill the pens with water and draw onto the mat, the picture comes up on the mat in blue against a white back ground and when it drys it fades away.
We have had hours of fun playing with this, i love it as i can leave the children to play alone with this without the worry of them drawing all over my house as all that is in the pen is water.
As we do not have a lot of floor space in our house for them to play with this i have stuck it to the wall with velcro so not only is it fun but also doesnt take up any room.
My daughters also like to paint onto there aqua draw mat with a paint brush and a pot of water.
This is most definatley the best £20 iv ever spent.
Magic Water Mummy ?? (Also Appears On Ciao Jenny76)
My three year old had his birthday on Saturday and one of the presents he received was Tomy Aqua draw which he is completely obsessed with and I must say out of all the toys and games he has and there are a few this is by far and away the most played with already. The real beauty of this is that it produces absolutely no mess at all and the pens are filled with water not ink. We bought it for him from Tesco at £19.99 and were very impressed ourselves.
What You Get:
Large Aqua Draw Mat
2 Stencil Boards
2 Water Pens
The Aqua draw system is a brilliant idea basically it consists of a huge mat which has a blue coloured layer beneath which is covered with a white sheet, around the edges are dotted outlined numbers and letters with colourful pictures all the way around. The mat looks plain until you take one of the two pens included and fill it with water. The end of the pen twists off for filling with water and then just twists back on again. The nib is like a felt tip pen but sucks water from inside and wets the end for drawing onto the mat.
The magic comes when the wet end of the pen hits the mat and comes out play just like a felt tip pen but with the bonus of not being able to be used for drawing on the walls and carpets as well as no mess on the hands and face as is popular with my little ones. The set also comes with two sets of stencil templates which are made of bendable plastic so cant be snapped, my boy loves to set it down and fill in the stencil with the pen creating loads of different patterns and pictures from clouds and the sun to hearts and circles.
The mat is also very tough and sturdy made from a very durable but soft plastic and well stitched with a lining around the edges. You can wash the mat in the washing machine on a low temperature but due to the nature of the water based pens I tend to just give it a wipe with a wet cloth to clean. Beware the little ones may try using real pens on it as mine has so I only get it out when he is being supervised and especially not when pens and pencils are in the same room.
The Aqua Draw is designed for children from the age of 18 months but perfectly safe for use from an earlier age, the educational benefits of the Aqua Draw are really good especially with the dotted lined numbers and letters which can be filled in with the water pens to encourage recognition of letters and numbers and how to draw them. The stencils are great and can be used all together to create some very nice pictures and scenes and the drawing lasts about 15 minutes or until dried out then it is blank again and ready for drawing on all over again.
This would provide any child with hours of fun and I highly recommend anybody who is thinking about it to buy it for their children or relatives with children. At the price of £19.99 it was a bargain and much more worth the money than the Teletubbies version which was very limited in comparison and more expensive. Thank you for taking the time to read my review.
I bought this for my daughter when she was 18 months, she loved being able to draw and I was able to relax and not worry about her getting anything on the floor!
The mat easily folds out to a good size, its ideal if you have 2 young chilren as there is no fighting to have a go! Also comes with 2 pens that you fill with water which is great, one usually went walk about so is great to have a spare.
There is a alphabet and numbers around the edge that children can colour in as you count.
The pens open anti - clockwise which is confusing at first but you get used to that, think it stops little hands from opening it!
Drawings usually stay on the mat for about a minute, then it disapears so you can start drawing again.
Its very easy to wipe clean, we have had chocolate and milk spilt on it and just wiped it a little with water and some washing up liquid.
Could do with coming with a bag to store it in, box is not very small and takes up alot of room.
Overall though, a fantastic gift whether for one child or two
I was really pleased when I discovered the Tomy aquadraw. It states that you can draw magic water pictures and it's true and there's no mess!
You are provided with a large drawing mat which measures 90cm by 90 cm so you do need a large table or a bit of floor space to use it! The mat has lots of stimulating pictures around the outside in alphabetical order as well as all the letters and numbers. Children can practice their numbers and counting skills and learn their A, B, C while tracing over these.
There are two special pens provided. These need to be filled with water and then as the children start to draw on the mat, their images appear before their eyes - like magic! Because there are two pens they can interact with another child while they are drawing which makes it a good social expereince. We did lose the pens for a while though which meant that we could not draw on the mat. I haven't found out whether it is possible to buy spare pens.
Children can also use their hands and feet to make patterns and impressions once they have got them wet so it's great for those children who like messing about with water.I assume there is some particular preparation applied to the mat to allow it to work but they do not say what it is on the box.
I think the main advantage is that there is absolutely no mess and when they have finished it can just be put back in their box.
However, one disadvantage is that the drawings fade within about fifteen minutes so it is impossible for the children to save their precious artwork.
It costs round about £20 so will not break the bank!
I have two little girls aged three and seventeen months. My eldest has really enjoyed using the aquadraw for a while and my youngest is just starting to take an interest. It does state that it is for 18month+ on the box though so I do have to be careful with the younger one.
When i saw this i just had to write a review.
I put this down on my two year old Keeley's christmas list and i am so happy i did. This is the best invention for kids of pre school age with an arty flare.
Its just under a meter square, with a backing of waterproof mat and a top layer of white material. There are two stencils with it (one of shapes - square, circle etc and one of flower, cat etc ) and two refillable pens. The pens i'm still not used to filling up, the arrow says to open the opposite way, the brain insists on trying the correct way. Presumably this is to stop little people opening and spilling water everywhere. Surrounding the edge of the mat are the alphabet, numbers and pictures. Big surface area inside of border to draw on. No need to go too much into the material etc as it does the job and does it well.
Keeley will play with this for hours. I put it on the floor she lies down and gets into her squiggles. The stencils are great as she feels she is making recognisable shapes. She also has fun saying what the pictures are on the border of the mat. She counts the pictures and tries out the alphabet. She likes flicking the pen to make splash marks and we wet her hand to make hand prints. She will insist on making you get on the floor and join in though. Which is the biggest reason to get this. With two year olds too young to be at big table on their own, the mat is too big for her table and forget the high chair she stopped using that ages ago and it would not fit anyhow. So only option for the younger children is to put it on the floor. As there is no ink you can be re-assured your carpet will stay the original colour! Keeley gets to draw to her hearts content and i'm a happy stress free mother for an hour or so.
This product could be improved by providing a carry case or strage case/bag. I have to hunt around in a box of toys for the pens which upsets an impatient Keeley!
Price range £15-£20. Most toy shops stock this now.
Great present and there is an upgrade version of Thomas the Tank enguine which you can create track marks and the toy train will follow them everywhere. I haven't got this one but would consider buying for nephews etc.