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I was given this as a gift for my daughter at Christmas when she was 6 months old. It states it is suitable from 6 months to 2 years. I think it is suitable from whenever your child can sit unaided as although it is designed to encourage crawling my daughter is not quite there yet but loves to play with it in front of her when sitting.
The average cost appears to be around £15 which I think is good for this kind of toy and batteries are included. The ball comes in two colours, a unisex organge and a girls pink.
The general gist is that this is a ball that once switched on and touched will come to life and roll around on its own. So it is a reactive toy that encourages your child to crawl after it. However it is not unrealistic and does stop after a short distance so they do not need to run a marathon to catch it.
It also includes lots of lights and sounds. There is an off button and two sound levels. It has the usual children's themes of animals and numbers etc. With a range of songs and sounds some you will recognise but adapted to fit the ball, for example it sings a song like row row row your boat but the words are 'roll, roll, roll the ball back to me'. Each part of the ball has some thing interesting on but my daughter loves the top as it spins, lights up and has a moving lady bird which she tried to grab. It also has little ribbons hanging from the top.
The ball is not too heavy so can be easily picked up by an older child. I can see my daughter using this toy for a while because as her mobility grows so will the uses.
I had never really seen these type of product around before I bought it. I just happened to come across it by chance when I was searching on eBay for some new toys for me then 6 month old baby. After seeing it I looked for it for sale online to see what price they were new and what sort of reviews it got as well as what it did.
It is a small ball (a bit smaller than a football) and it has a motor inside which very cleverly rocks the ball around in different directions gently. The idea of it is that your baby will be fascinated by it as it moves, has lights and sound and it will encourage them to crawl towards it as it keeps moving.
It has 3 animal buttons (cat, dog & monkey) which make animal noises when you press them as well as saying what the animal is. There are 3 other buttons numbered 1, 2 & 3 and are a circle, triangle and a square each with a picture of a small animal on. When they are pressed it will once tell you the shape and the second time you press it you will hear what the image is on the shape e.g one caterpillar. These buttons also light up. The ball also plays several tunes and sings if your baby is not pressing any of the buttons.
On the top of the ball is a spinning disc with a white swirl inside and a swirling ladybird that can be pushed round and round. On the outside of the spinning disc are 6 coloured material tabs which are great for your baby to grab. It has a low and high volume setting and takes 3 x AA batteries.
It has lots of bright colours and is full of features. My son loved this ball when he was learning to crawl, whether it actually helped him crawl in any way is debatable but even after he could crawl he was more than happy to play with it. My 5 month old has now started playing with it and is very interested in trying to catch it as it rolls around.
I bought this ball second hand for a few pounds but I think they retail for around £10 which in itself is a good price. It is a very fun toy and does provide alot of entertainment. The ball moves very gently so you don't worry about it bumping in to your baby. I bought another similar type ball that moves very fast and is a bit more violent when it moves so I won't get that one back out until my daughter can move out of its way!
I bought this crawl and learn ball for my son for Christmas. He was seven months old at christmas, and just starting to try and crawl so I thought this would be perfect for him. At the time I purchased it, it only cost me £8.99 on Amazon - bargain for this toy! I have seen it since in other shops such as Tesco for nearly £15! Even at £15 though, it is a brilliant, toy, and I still would be happy with it, at that price. For £8.99, this is one of the best toys I bought my baby. It comes in orange and pink, I bought the orange one for my son, but this colour could be for a girl too.
This keeps my baby amused for hours every day. He will sit up and just play with it on his lap, just touching it and watching the lights. Or he will play with it during tummy time, and try and reach for it. This ball when you switch it on, rolls about. It doesn't roll off to the other side of the room, but it rolls just slightly away from your baby, to encourage them to crawl and reach for it. My son gets so frustrated when he can't reach it! It is definitely pushing him to try and crawl faster, he really tries hard to go after it.
On the top of the ball it has little ribbons, going around the top, which are different colours, this allows you to pull the ball closer or pick it up, with one hand, rather than pick the whole ball up which can be difficult to grip. My son is always pulling and tugging on these, they are a great little extra that my son loves playing with. On the very top of the ball is a ladybird, which you can spin around, and my son is fascinated by it! It spins at the gentlest touch so it isn't hard for them to work out what it does.
The ball also has flashing lights on the top and on the numbers. The numbers are on a shape, so when you press them, it says what the shape is, for example, circle. So it is great for when they are older when they are learning numbers and shapes. The numbers also have cute pictures on, a caterpillar, snails and bees to make them more fun and interesting. The ball also has three animal buttons too, a cat, a dog and a monkey and when you press these buttons, it makes the sound the animal would make.
There are so many different colours on this ball, yellow, red, orange, white, blue, it is so colourful and eye catching, it immediately grabs my sons attention as soon as he sees it. He is only eight months now, and it is a little too heavy for him to pick up on his own, but I can see this toy lasting a good few years. It is great for them to learn with up until 2-3 years old.
There are songs that this ball plays, which are easy for a small child to sing along to and learn the words, although they are doing my head in! I hear them so many times each day! There is a loud and quiet volume button on it, and it takes 3 AA batteries, which you put in the bottom of the ball. You need a screw driver to put the batteries in so your baby cannot get them out.
This is definitely helping my baby to try and crawl, he is fascinated with the colours, the lights and sounds, and I would recommend this toy to anyone with a baby of similar age or a little older.
We got this toy when Tyler was about 6 months old. Hes now 18 months old and occasionally I'll get it out for him to play but Id reccomend it more for babies in the under one range.
WHAT DOES IT LOOK LIKE?
Its an orange ball. It has a lady bird on top with can spin round. It has a few ribbon tags for baby to grab on to.There are also a selection of buttons for baby to press- of shapes (with numbers in) and animals.
WHAT DOES IT DO?
Its interactive and responds to you pressing buttons, rolling the ball and spinning the ladybird. It has flashing lights and plays music. It also has a motor inside it which allows it to roll about by itself. It doesnt roll so well on fluffy textured carpets but flat carpets or hard floor it seems to work fine.
I'd say the volume control is pretty good too. There are two options and I have sometimes found with vtech toys these options seem to translate as LOUD and LOUDER but the quieter option definitly is just that- quiet.
DOES IT ENCOURAGE CRAWLING?
It can do. Im pretty sure this was the toy that encouraged my son to roll back to front but not the one that actually got him crawling. He would get a little frustrated before he was fully mobile but he learnt to crawl soon after we got this so it wasnt a huge problem. He equally liked sitting and playing with it or crawling around with it.
I didnt think this would be particuarly suitable as he got older but at 18 months hes very much into pressing buttons (he loves cause & effect) and he likes to watch the ball move about. However now he is used to other balls he likes to throw this and I get a bit worried he'll break it so I dont get it out all that often. Its reccomended for up to 2 years but I think by 2 theyd be too rough with it.
It takes 3 AA batteries which you insert in the base of the ball- youll need a screwdriver to do this. The battery life was pretty good considering the amount of time tyler spent playing with this. I think it lasted us for around 6-7 months before it gave up and it was one of his main toys.
You can get for just under £14 at tesco although you'd probably find cheaper on Ebay. For the amount of fun we got out of this ball I'd say its definitly worth the price.
The Vtech crawl and learn ball is great, we bought this for my daughter as a christmas present when she was 4 months old knowing that we would get a lot of use out of it. Our friends had one and i loved the concept of it, the ball has numbers 1-3, shapes of circle, square and triangle and seperate animal buttons as well as animals on the number and shape buttons. It plays a fair variety of tunes and the lights flash randomly with each tune that is played, the ball rolls independently rotating around and rolling gradually away from where it started. It also has some silk tags on the top as different texture to explore and things to grab.
As our daughter got this so young at first she would watch the lights flash and listen to the music, she started to reach out for it just while sitting between our legs.
As she got older we would put it above her head while on her back to encourage rolling over and now lay her on front and put it in front of her to encourage crawling. I would say that this ball hasn't made her do any of these things but i do think to a point babies will do this when they are ready.
Nonetheless this is a great toy that she loves and is one of her favourites, she now at 8 1/2 months old loves to hit the buttons, she particularly likes the ladybird on top and often grabs that, while sitting she will push the ball about in front of her and roll it up over her legs to try and cuddle it and eat it!
I think this will be used for many more months and will become a great learning tool for numbers, shapes and colours as well as animals and their noises.
We bought this from tesco for about £14 but it is readily found in most shops for £15 and under.
My son was given the VTech Crawl and Learn Bright Lights Ball for Christmas when he was six months old. I was really pleased as quite a few of our mummy/baby friends have one and I had heard great things about it. We have a few VTech toys and I know the brand to be good quality, entertaining and educational, although I find the songs their toys play are often very irritating for adults!
- Packaging -
The ball was packaged in a bright blue box which was easy to remove. It requires 3 AA batteries to operate which are easily inserted in a compartment at the base of the ball; all you need is a screwdriver. The first batteries we put in lasted us 3-4 months.
- The Ball -
The ball itself is made from robust hard plastic in the lovely bright colours of orange, turquoise and white. There is an on/off switch and two volumes, quiet and loud. I find quiet is much easier on my ears! As soon as the ball is turned on it will start moving around in all directions on its own, playing songs and lights will flash. There are several different features of this ball which light up and play music.
On top of the ball is a yellow plastic circle which lights up and has a 3D lady bird on it. The yellow circle can be spun by moving the lady bird and this will light it up and play a song. My son really likes playing with the little lady bird. Around this circle are six small brightly coloured pieces of ribbon. These are great for teaching babies about textures and my son loves holding the ball and playing (or sucking!) the ribbon.
On the side of the ball there are several buttons to press. There are three animal buttons: cat, dog, and monkey. When pressed the animal makes the appropriate noise and then a voice states what the animal is, e.g. Woof Woof, Dog. If the same button is pressed again a little tune will play and the animal joins in singing along! Although very irritating for an adult this seems to be great entertainment for my son. It also teaches children about these three animals.
There are three more buttons: a purple circle with the number one and a Caterpillar, a green square with the number two and two Snails, a red triangle with the number three and three Bumble Beas. These light up when pressed. Each button will either tell you the number, animal or shape of the button when pressed, or a song will play. Pressing these is fun for my baby but I also like the educational element. All the buttons are large and easy for baby to press.
- Encouraging Crawling -
The main focus of this ball is that it encourages baby to crawl as they will want to chase after it. The ball will roll off but will stop, allowing baby to catch it. When we first played with this ball my baby couldn't crawl. I found rather than encouraging him to crawl he would simply get frustrated when it moved out of his reach. Also he would often roll onto his back and couple of times the ball rolled straight into his head. Needless to say we weren't very fond of the ball and we barely used it. However, once he started to crawl we tried the ball again and he loved it! He would push it away from him and then chase it all over the house. He sometimes pushes it quite hard and then laughs hysterically as it shoots across the room. I would say it is a great toy to have once your baby is already crawling and can provide a lot of entertainment but if your baby can't crawl don't expect the ball to help teach him or her.
- Age Range -
The ball is aimed at babies of six months to two years. I imagine if my baby isn't bored of it by then he will certainly be too rough with it so I'm not sure he will be using it up until the age of two. We will probably use it until my son starts walking.
- Durability -
The ball is very long lasting thanks to its robust plastic design and has survived crashing into walls and furniture on numerous occasions and isn't damaged in any way.
- Price and Availablity -
The ball is widely available in toy shops, online and in some large supermarkets, retailing at around £15. I think this is quite good value for money, especially considering how many features it has.
- Would I Recommend? -
Overall I would definitely recommend this ball as it is educational, entertaining, long lasting and good value for money. My only criticism would be that it didn't actually encourage my baby to start crawling as I had expected. As my son loves this toy I think I can put up with the irritating noises and tunes!
I was given this ball when my son was first born; I got it out of the cupboard when he was 3 months old and it has been one his favourite toys since. At first he would just hold it and tap it listening to the music and watching the lights. Then he would chase it around the house trying to catch it.
It is a magical moving ball that rolls on its own. On top of the ball is a ladybird that spins and rotates which activates songs. Around the sides are other animals such as a monkey and a cat that you can press and they make animal sounds. There are also three shapes with bugs on them that can be pressed and they say numbers and the name of the bug, these all light up. The buttons are chunky and robust.
The ball seeks to encourage crawling so rolls in different directions but it stops quickly so it can still be just within reach. It also teaches numbers, animals and colours. There are small ribbons on the top of the ball to help babies discover texture, my son found these fascinating.
It is marketed from 6 months to 2 years. I found that at about 1kg it is fairly weighty which is good to start with, but now my son is 18 month he tries to kick it and also throw it so I would say once this starts the life of the toy is coming to an end.
Overall, I would definitely recommend it to others; in fact I bought one for my friend who had a baby in January.
This is hilarious, I think I actually enjoyed it more than my son at the time, who was around eight months old. It has bright attractive colours, numbers and textures all over to help promote your babies development. It also has a rolling motion, which my son was terrified of. I have to say its a great educational toy and my friends son loves his. I tried re-introducing this again when Alex got older but he has shown no interest.
It has two settings for the volume and a lovely ladybird that spins around on top. Personally i think that it depends on the child and his/her interests its reasonably priced at around £11.00 on Amazon, which is good value for money as it has so many different and fun lights and sounds. My son is basically only interested in wheels and footballs!
I am actually having a giggle to myself as we have a eight month old border collie who just adores this toy. She presses all the buttons and chases it when it starts rolling. Very funny to watch. So if your child does not take to it a puppy will!
My 7 month old son was showing signs of wanting to crawl. He had all the moves but just not the co-ordination to actually move. We bought him this toy whilst out one day from the ELC as they were having a 20% off day. It looked fun and said that it encouraged crawling. We have also had other toys from Vtech that have been good quality and that my son has enjoyed playing with so we thought we would give it a go.
When we got home, we put our son on the floor and switched the ball on, placing it in front of him. He immediately began to bat it about and it sang to him as it rolled out of reach. He found this incredibly frustrating as he was unable to get it back. I therefore had to nudge it back within his reach. Cue us doing this several times before he got fed up and began sucking the table leg instead!
We have had several attempts with this toy with the same outcome each time, he will play with it for a short while before getting fed up and frustrated. He much prefers sitting up with it between his legs and pressing the buttons. However, his favourite thing about this toy is the brightly coloured ribbons attatched to the top that he likes to suck to death!!
The toy plays several pleasant tunes and sound effects when the various coloured light up buttons are pressed, this means that babies are able to play with and enjoy this toy even if they are unable to crawl. However, I would say that rather than using to encourage crawling, it would be of more use to a child that can already crawl as they will be able to follow the ball rather than get frustrated by it moving away.
This toy is educational, teaching numbers, animals and motor skills, however, it is certainly not one of our favourites. Maybe in time, we can grow to love it.
This is a toy that I have looked at a couple of times and thought about buying for my daughter although I had decided not to she was bought it by a relative for her birthday recently. The ball is available all over, I have seen it in toy shops and supermarkets and it seems to cost around £15 although a lot of places have 3 for 2 offers on at the moment so you may be able to get it cheaper this way. I think this is a reasonable price for this toy and I am glad that my daughter was given this as it is brilliant.
The ball comes packaged in a bright blue box that is open at the front so that you are able to try it before you buy it to get a feel for what it can do. The box is sealed on all edges with sellotape so you know it is new and then you simply lift it out which means no need for scissors or screwdrivers like a lot of toys these days. The ball is made by Vtech so you know it is going to be educational as well as fun for your child.
The ball is made of hard plastic and has so many bits to it it is hard to know where to start, the main part of the ball is half orange and half white with a battery compartment on the bottom which can be opened with something thin and flat rather than just a screwdriver which I always find handy as screwdrivers seem to grow legs in our house. The toy takes 2 x AA batteries but these are included so that is a bonus, I hate when you get a toy for a child and then there are no batteries it always ends in an upset child or a mad dash to the shops. On the box you are warned that the batteries included are for demo purposes only and that they are not long life batteries but at least it allows your child to play with their new toy when they get it. The ball is aimed at babies from 6 months to 2 years as it is aimed at helping babies crawl but there is also so much more to it.
There are loads of buttons on this ball one of which obviously is the on/off button, when you turn it on there are two volume options which I always try to keep set at the lowest as with 2 young children playing with noisy toys I quite often have a headache! When turned on the ball automatically starts to vibrate and roll around, you never know which direction the ball is going to go off in. I find it funny watching my daughter trying to chase this ball around the room and she keeps laughing at it so although she cannot tell me she certainly seems to be enjoying playing and chasing the ball.
==1, 2 and 3==
There are 3 buttons aptly named 1, 2 and 3, the buttons are different colours, display a different insect and are different shapes and they light up when the ball is singing or when the buttons are pressed. When each button is first pressed it starts to sing "roll, roll the ball" when you press it again it tells you the number and what animal is displayed on the button, pressed again the baby is told what the shape of the button is. I like that the buttons teach a number of things rather than just one and that the buttons are not too hard to press, my daughter has no problems pushing them and inbetween them being pushed if they are not pushed again quick enough the ball will sing random songs which helps hold the babies interest.
Inbetween the 1, 2 and 3 buttons there are three buttons in the shape of animals, there is a cat, a dog and a monkey. These buttons are very bold coloured and when pressed you get the noise of the animal and then the ball announces the name of the animal, if you press the button for a second time the ball plays a song but without words and then you have the noise as if the animal is singing along. I found the singing animals a bit of a strange option to have on a toy but my daughter finds it funny when her sister pretends she is a dog and barks along with the song too.
==The top of the ball==
On the top of the ball there is a large yellow circle which lights up and flashes along with the other coloured buttons, around the outside of this circle there is a ladybird which stands out form the ball and whizzes around the circle when the ball is rolling around the floor, my daughter has worked out how to whizz the ladybird around when she manages to catch the ball that is and seems to like twizzling it round and round. There are also 6 coloured tags of fabric which according to the box are easy to grab tags but they are only about an inch long so I don't see how these are easy to grab especially for a 6 month old.
I think this toy is great and well worth the money, the toy automatically shuts off if it isn't touched in a while which I think is great as my daughter loses interest in things quite quickly and will the return to them again later. The ball doesn't work very well on long piled carpets and rugs and simply seems to quiver rather than roll but on short piled carpet and hard floors it works great. The ball is very brightly coloured and the flashing buttons make it appealing to babies which afterall is what you want from the toy. I like the fact that the toy teaches so many different items and feel it is never too young to start teaching young babies things such as numbers and colours. My daughter has played with this everyday since she got it and certainly seems to be enjoying it therefore I would recommend this toy.
The Vtech Crawl And Learn Bright Lights Ball was given to Freddy at Christmas last year when he was almost nine months old. At the time Freddy was unable to sit unaided let alone crawl, and so this was a toy that he found delightful and yet immensely frustrating. Six months later and this is a toy that Freddy has just about got to grips with but also one that I as an adult find has some serious flaws.
==Roll, Roll The Ball==
Billed as being suitable for babies over six months on paper the Vtech Crawl And Learn Ball sounds like a fantastic toy. It certainly ticks the box in as far as being brightly coloured with lots of activities goes. Being manufactured by Vtech it goes without saying that this is an electronic toy that has aspirations to educate your child. Requiring three AA batteries (why the odd number, does Vtech not realise that I hate odd batteries being left stuck in a drawer), this ball features lights, sounds and movement. The ball is easy to switch on and has two volume levels, Freddy has little difficulty pushing the slide switch across, but there doesn't seem to be a lot of difference between the two volume levels, both of which are loud enough to hear without being so loud as to drown out everything else. Once the ball is switched on it immediately bursts into song singing "roll, roll, roll the ball" to the tune of row the boat. Way to go Vtech, confuse my child who absolutely adores row the boat (especially the scream in the second verse). As well as singing the ball also flashes it's lights at this point and begins moving randomly as a weight moves in it's inner workings.
Before I go any further, I'm really going to have a mini-rant about the weight. At just over 400g this ball is far too heavy for the recommended age group. For the youngest of babies (6 months-1year) it's simply too heavy for them to be able to lift confidently. When he first received this at 9months, Freddy was unable to sit independently and so would lay on his back holding the ball above him. But the ball was so heavy that he could only hold it for a couple of minutes meaning that he would get frustrated and I would have a heart attack as I watched him expecting him to drop it on his face at any moment. And if he had of dropped it, it would have hurt as not only is it heavy but it is also made of hard plastic, so be prepared for bruises. Once baby starts reaching toddler hood and begins to learn to throw and kick, then the ball becomes only just short of lethal. Should it be thrown across the room and come into contact with anything breakable then the worst definitely could happen and if it is dropped on your toe it definitely hurts.
Right that's that rant over (don't worry there is another one to come), on to the better aspects of the ball. Starting with the six buttons around the circumference. These buttons are all large, easy to press and set off a number of different sounds as well as flashing lights. Three of these buttons are different shapes and colours with numbers on them while the other three are animals. Pressing on the buttons sets off a number of different sounds, including animals noises, numbers, colours shapes and a very irritating song (flashing lights and music too, it's fun playing games with you) as well as setting off the motor. While the idea of the ball moving randomly is great, there are a couple of problems. Firstly the actual motor is very loud and almost drowns out the music (especially on the lower volume).
The second problem is that for the baby who hasn't conquered crawling the random movement becomes quite frustrating as the ball moves out of their reach. Freddy used to get quite upset that the ball would move just as he was playing with it. It would have been a good idea if that movement could have been switched off. Then once the child has started to learn to roll a ball, they can be very confused when this ball doesn't go where they expect. Even when switched off the ball doesn't roll in a straight line and I have occasionally caught Freddy looking very confused as it simply rolls back towards him.
When he first received this, Freddy's favourite part was the top of the ball which features a large yellow light surrounded by silky tags and topped by a ladybird that can be spun. Spinning the ladybird once more sets off lights, sounds and movement and even now Freddy loves to sit and spin the ladybird. The silky tags add a tactile element to the ball, but to be honest the only use Freddy has found for them is to pull the ball towards him.
Before I get onto my next mini-rant I'm going give the ball a little praise, what I really like about the sounds is that the voice is clearly English, with English pronounciation. Personally I hate toys that speak with an American voice (Fisher Price anyone?) as they pronounce many words differently to us and even have different words for the same thing (cookie/biscuit). Although it is often drowned out by the motor, the voice is also quite distinct and very friendly.
And onto my next rant, which is about the batteries. Firstly I must say that the battery compartment is firmly sealed and unlike many toys it doesn't use cross-head screws. This means that it's a lot easier to open without having to hunt out a screwdriver as the screw heads are actually large enough to undo with a knife if necessary. Once installed the three AA batteries last a reasonable amount of time, a decent set of Duracell last about three months. Again I'm going to say, what's with the three batteries, do toy manufacturer's have shares in battery manufacturers or something, what with all those odd batteries. A clue Vtech, AA batteries come in packs of four, so either use two batteries or four not three.
While some of the songs are annoying when the batteries still have full life, this ball becomes extraordinarily irritating as the batteries start to wear down, with the voices slowing like a record played at the wrong speed and an interminable whirring that seems to last for ever. Of course I could simply change the batteries, but try convincing a fourteen month that they need changing when the ball is still making noises (of a sort). I would have preferred that once the batteries run down it just stopped working (as many other of his electronic toys do) rather than it try and keep going. I would also have liked for this toy to switch off automatically when not played with for a period of time, or at least to keep quiet. I swear this ball gets lonely as every now and again it bursts into song in the hope that Freddy will come and play.
Vtech would like us to think that this ball is especially educational, what with it saying shapes, numbers and colours singing songs and moving to encourage the baby to reach and crawl. And I suppose that as far as the encouraging baby to crawl it's true, Freddy will crawl across the room to get to the ball. But at the same time he'll crawl across the room for any number of other toys, including the ball I bought him for a pound from the pound shop. In fact that cheap and cheerful ball is far more fun as far as Freddy is concerned, because he can throw it across the room and then chase it. As for all the buttons, yes they do reward emerging fine motor skills, but again so do many other toys and I'm certainly not convinced that the numbers, colours and shapes are really going implant themselves into a six month old baby's brain. In fact I'd go as far as to say that the lack of context means that it's actually less about teaching than it is about making parent's feel they are doing more for their child.
This ball was bought as a gift for Freddy by his Nana and I'm so glad I didn't buy it myself because I'd be kicking myself by now. With an average price of £14.99 this is a brilliant idea that simply has too many problems. Of course the main problem is the weight, the ball is just too heavy to be practical and Vtech really don't seem to have thought about how children in the recommended age group treat their toys. If a toddler sees a ball then they are going to either throw or kick it, and it's not nice being at the receiving end of this. As far as the younger babies go, it's simply too heavy for them to hold and therefore becomes frustrating and possibly even dangerous. The repetitive noises (especially one particular song) also become quite mind numbing for adults, which is a slight problem as I would never allow Freddy to play with this unsupervised as there is far too much of a risk of something getting broken as he throws it.
So in case you haven't guessed I really dislike this toy, but at the same time Freddy loves it. He really gets quite excited when he sees it and will play with it several times a day for a fairly extended period. This makes making a recommendation really difficult, because I as a parent would only give this one star out of five, but I'm pretty sure that as a child, Freddy would give it five. So I'm going to split the difference and give it three stars out of five and recommend that you only buy it if you are willing to accept the possible dangers and the need to quite closely supervise your child while they play with it. (A much better idea is to simply buy your toddler an actual ball, after with that they can roll it, throw it, kick and chase it and you can join in too).
Since having a baby 8 Months ago and realising what a huge range of Toys there are available and trying out a few different Manufacturers and Brands, I've found mine and my son's favourites and one of these brands is VTech. I've noticed that the vast majority of the toys they make are Educational in some shape or form as well as being greatly entertaining for Babies and Toddlers.
I hadn't heard of the VTech Crawl and Learn Bright Lights Ball, it was when I was in a local Charity Shop that I saw it on the shelf still in brand new conditon for £2.50 and since it was VTech I thought it was definetley worth the money and I was optimistic that it would be beneficial AND fun for my baby as with other VTech toys.
The ball is brightly coloured and it is quite a hard plastic so I was a little bit concerned about my son when he was playing with it lying on his back and holding it above him, I was scared that he might drop it on his face or head because with it being quite a heavy little ball with such hard casing, it would really hurt him if it did. He wasn't able to sit up on his own yet so he was really only playing with toys while lying down, so at first the ball only got played with when I had him sitting up in front of me and I would help him play with it on his lap. This was when he was about 5 Months old, now he is 8 Months old and can sit up on his own and is even trying to crawl, this ball is getting used a lot more now!
When switched on, the ball spins and twirls around the floor by itself without you even having to touch it which I thought was really clever! At the same time it will flash and light up and say different phrases and sing different songs - the one it plays the most is 'Row Your Boat' but it says "Roll, Roll, Roll the ball gently as can be!" instead. There are also different shaped buttons which can be pressed and they light up when your baby presses them, they will also say their number or shape aloud. The buttons are chunky too so even the tiniest of fingers should manage to press them. There are even pictures of a Cat, a Monkey and a Dog which all make the relevant sounds when pressed and they are all very cute. If the ball receives no touch or actions for a few seconds, it will recognise this and start to sing again or encourage your baby to play with it more by saying "Roll me!" or "Come and Play with me!" If the ball continues to receive no interaction it will say "Bye Bye" and stop its singing and sounds.
There are little "Tags" similar to those found on a Taggie Blanket around the ball which make it easier for your babies little hands to grab onto it and pull it toward them, I think they were a clever addition by VTech. The one thing you have to be careful with is making sure you Turn this Ball off when it's not in use, because it does go so quiet if it's not being played with that you will think it is Off when in fact the Switch is still turned On and of course this will run the Batteries down quicker. We've left ours on overnight a few times by accident though and our Batteries are still going strong and haven't had to be changed yet!
I'm sure all Parents have came across one or several toys that are really loud and annoying to listen to! Fortunatley, VTech have taken this into consideration when making this toy and have included 2 Sound settings which allow you to have a little bit more control over how loud it is. I've also found that this ball hasn't gotten grubby or sticky even though my son is playing with it all the time. The shiny, hard plastic that it is made from can just be wiped down and it has remained in good condition.
This toy is reccomended for 6 Months + but as I mentioned earlier, I didn't really allow my son to play with it properly until he was 7-8 Months old as I was concerned about the hard shell the toy has. I think it was more entertaining for him at this age anyway. It is certainly helping my son as he is Learning, Growing and Exploring, I'd say the main skills it develops are; Motor, Visual, Linguistic and Musical! I'm sure as my son gets a bit older it will help him when learning his Colours, Numbers and Animals!
The Batteries in the toy are 2 x AA which come with the toy when you buy it. Its Dimensions are 17 x 17 x 17 cm. It is definetely a great little toy for getting your baby chasing around after their toys and on the move! I certainly got it at a bargain for £2.50, but it is usually £15.99 in most Toy Shops including Toys r Us and Amazon.co.uk
Looking back to when the boys were starting to become more mobile and pulling themselves into a crawling position, Mr Lools and I were very keen to encourage them to take movements forwards. One toy which we bought that claimed to help with this was the VTech Crawl and Learn Bright Lights Ball.
***What Is It***
The VTech Crawl and Learn Bright Lights Ball is a motorised ball which "magically" moves on its own. The ball is the size of a small football and made from hard white plastic. The ball has animal shaped buttons on it (A dog, cat and monkey) and when pressed these make animal sounds. There are also multi-coloured shapes with numbers on them which when pressed say the shape, the colour or the number. There are also parts of the ball which light up and flash. In addition to ribbons which stick out of the ball.
The ball requires 3 size AA batteries which are supplied with the toy.
VTech state that the Crawl and Learn Ball is suitable for children from 6 months to 2 years old. The toy encourages babies to become more mobile, whilst being stimulating as it flashes and makes sounds. For older babies and toddlers, the ball has many learning features, with buttons to press to help learn about, numbers, colours, animals and shapes.
The toy is perfectly rounded and has no parts that could come detached but if I was giving this to a 6 month old baby I would take caution that the baby is constantly supervised and is not allowed to lie down on their back and play with the ball. It is a very heavy toy and if a young baby dropped this on themself whilst playing this could hurt or cause injury.
The VTech Crawl and Learn Bright Lights Ball is available from a large number of retailers, including Argos, ELC, Toys R Us, Tesco, Smyths and Boots to name a few.
The price of the product ranges from £9- £17.99 although Vtech state the RRP on their website is £14.99. I purchased this toy for my boys in October 2010 from ELC for £9.99. It is worth shopping around as it is a toy which is often on special offer or has money off.
***Playing with it***
Once removed from the packaging the VTech Crawl ball is turned on with a simple on off switch on the side of the ball. This is quite small therefore will most likely require an adult to do so rather than a child. The on switch has the option to be set to the on half volume option or the on full volume option. I find that the on full volume option is very loud and the music and sounds played by the ball at this volume mean it is difficult to have a conversation without the need to raise your voice. The half volume setting is preferable as it is loud enough for a child to hear without causing nuisance.
Once the ball is turned on it plays a sound immediately and will roll on the floor. The ball sings "roll, roll roll the ball" to the tune of the song "row, row the boat". As the ball plays sounds it also flashes and moves around on the floor due to the motor inside of the ball. The movement in the ball is in circular movements and although quite fast, it does stop every 10 seconds or so to encourage children to play with it or catch up with the ball if they are chasing it.
My boys play with the ball on laminate flooring and the ball moves fine once turned on it doesn't need any encouragement to move. On the occasions we have taken it to friends' houses that have carpet, the ball does move quite slowly, and often requires a bit of a push to get it moving.
My boys love nothing else but crawling and chasing the ball around the room squealing as they go. They started playing with this toy when they were 7 months old and were just learning how to crawl. The crawl ball encouraged them to move forwards as they often would not crawl unless there was something in front of them. After a few weeks of play they were a lot more mobile and more confident to actually chase the ball around and get back into a sitting position once they had caught up with the ball.
The ball is packed with features as it is literally covered in lots of different buttons all the way around which activate different sounds and make lights flash. There are ribbons on the top of the ball which stick out of the ball by about 1cm which are for tactile stimulation. The buttons on the ball are very easy for a baby to press.
At 13 months old my boys are able to pick up the ball and hold it. However the design of the ball means that it is quite difficult to hold made worse by the fact that it is very heavy. As a result the ball gets dropped almost constantly. This worried me as I thought the ball would be damaged however it is in full working order. It is my ears that take the battering from the bangs and crunches of the ball being dropped.
The VTech Crawl Ball is an excellent way to develop a child's skills in a variety of areas. Simply holding the ball, pressing buttons and chasing the ball help to develop motor skills. This is in addition to encouraging a child to discover and explore as the ball is a way of encouraging them to move about.
The ball is a great way to encourage a child's sensory development. The ball is made from a variety of textures such as ribbons and raised plastic pieces. My boys seem to really enjoy touching the ball and running their hands over it. The sounds and lights add to this, which is especially enjoyable for younger babies.
The VTech Crawl Ball also benefits from helping to aid with a child's language development. There are buttons to press which introduce the alphabet, shapes, colours and animal sounds. The words spoken when the buttons are pressed are in a clear English accent which makes it easy to understand what is being said and copy these words.
This is a great toy from V Tech. The Crawl and Learn Bright Lights ball is a colourful, attractive toy for children which helps encourage both physical and mental development. And for under £15 I think that this is excellent value.
As much as I think the ball helped with encouraging the boys to crawl, I do think that this was part of their natural development anyways. Me holding a toy and moving it about in front of them would probably have had a similar effect. This is a good aid however meaning you do not need to be sat manically waving toys at your child as you coo words of encouragement.
My only reservation about this toy is how heavy it is which I feel makes it slightly dangerous for young babies and also makes it quite difficult for toddlers to pick up. On a daily basis I hear a crunch or bang as the toy is thrown onto the floor. We so far have had no accidents or damage to the flooring or furniture but I am not going to rule this out. Those with real wood floors may want to reconsider purchasing this toy as it will definitely make dents and marks on your floor if placed into the arms of an excited toddler!
Overall a satisfactory toy, great for encouraging movement from babies and packed with educational features.
The VTech Crawl and Learn Bright Lights Ball is no ordinary ball! It's a sturdy ball-shaped toy (recommended for babies & toddlers from 6 to 24 months old) which encourages babies to crawl and learn. I thought this would be a fun toy for my baby niece.
My niece is now 12 months old and she's had the VTech Crawl and Learn Bright Lights Ball for a few months now. She was already crawling when she got it, but it has still encouraged her to move about and play with it.
The ball is made of plastic (like most kids toys) and is coloured cyan (blue), orange and white. It has 3 number buttons to press which also light up, as well as 3 animal buttons (cat, dog and monkey). At the top of the ball is a ladybird than can be spun around (the top also lights up), as well as 6 colourful ribbons sticking out from the top.
When the ball is turned on (there are 2 levels of sound to slide the switch across to), the ball starts moving and playing a song before asking the baby/toddler to "roll me!". When we first gave the ball to my niece, she was somewhat surprised at the ball moving by itself and didn't quite know what to do! However, she soon took to it.
There are a number of different songs that the ball plays (such as Row, Row Row the Ball, which is pretty much "Row, Row, Row the Boat" but with slightly different words!). All seem to encourage the child to play.
The number buttons light up when pressed, as well as saying the number, shape or colour of the button and even the noise of the animal on pictured on it.
The animal buttons more often than no play the sound of that particular animal (e.g. pressing the cat makes a "Miaow" sound), but sometimes the ball will also say what animal it is.
Now my niece is getting older, she isn't just pushing or rolling the ball and pushing the various buttons, she is also picking the ball up. Due to the mechanics inside the ball, it isn't the lightest of toys, but that doesn't stop my niece. The problem with her picking the ball up is that she's now inclined to either just drop it or to try throwing it (luckily she can't throw far at the moment!). As the ball is quite heavy (for a little one, at least), dropping it results in quite a thud and us adults cringing in case the toy breaks. However, this ball has now been dropped on many occasions and is still working as well as it did on the day I bought it. It's certainly a sturdy toy, that's for sure!
Also, whatever batteries VTech put in this ball, they are either very high quality or the toy doesn't use as much energy as you'd think it would. We've had the ball for a few months now and, despite regular play, we still haven't needed to change the batteries.
The VTech Crawl and Learn Bight Lights Ball has provided my niece with plenty of play time so far and I'm sure she'll be playing with it for quite a while yet. I'm also sure it'll still be in good working order by the time her sibling (due in March) is old enough to play with it too.
It's certainly well worth the £14.99 we paid for it at the time from Argos, but I have recently seen it for £11.95 from Amazon.
Highly recommended by me and my niece!
This is a nice toy for babies who are not quite crawling yet because it encourages them to roll over on to there tummy and gives them a reason to as well.When the baby plays with it it dosn't roll away to far that it goes out of there reach compleatly like a football would so they can still wriggle and get it.They love the bright lights and music that it plays.
It says that this toy is suitable for up to 24 months but I feel when they get to about 18 months they grow out of it because they start throwing it thinking it is a football and it is quite heavy and could land on there feet! Saying that it is very durable and it has been dropped many times and still works.The ball sings to the baby and has numbers not it and animals to but I feel there is other toys out there that have more learning in them because it rolls away its very random and the baby is more interested about chasing it rather than listening to it.