“ Brand: ELC „
I purchased this game from the Early Learning Centre when my son turned 18 months as I felt he had developed sufficiently to be able to sit and concentrate on games and I wanted a few things that we could play together with. This game looked perfect for that and, at £8 (reduced to £6.40 at the time) it would hardly break the bank. It is suitable from 18 months.
The game consists of five fabric 'leaves'. These are coloured on one side, each a different colour - yellow, green, orange, red and blue. On the other side they are all purple in colour with a number from 1-5 in white on each. There are also 15 wooden bugs contained. These are circular in shape and look like ladybirds. The bugs are each painted a colour that corresponds with the five colours that are used on the leaves - there are three in each colour. Contained in the box there is also a small cream linen bag that closes using a drawstring. This is for putting the bugs in.
The game can be played in various ways, which is great as you can tailor it to suit your child's development. It also means that you get a good life out of the toy and, when you play it in a different way, it is as good as new again. From 18 months, I used this to help teach my son his colours. At first he just liked to pick bugs out of the bag and place them on a leaf (any leaf would do!). As we played a few more times, he began to understand that the colours on the bugs matched those on the leaves and learnt to match them up. From this, he learnt to recognise the colours and when I asked him to 'pick a red bug' or 'where's the green leaf' he could identify the correct colour.
The bugs can also be used for numeracy. My son loves to count the bugs with me and also the number of spots on their back. It is a shame that all bugs are identical in this respect and all have four spots. As he gets older, I intend to use the other side of the leaves to aid number recognition and ask him to put the corresponding number of bugs on each leaf. The bugs can also be used for simple maths sums - adding up and taking bugs away.
For such a cheap, simple game this is fantastic. It really holds my son's attention and he loves to play it. He always asks for it too, which is a good sign! He has gained so much benefit from this - learning his colours, learning matching skills and counting. He has also been able to develop manipulative skills in picking the bugs out of the bag and placing on the leaves. The game also allows an opportunity to teach him to take turns and to share. I really can not recommend this game highly enough, it is also really small with not a lot to it so storage is not a problem either. Fantastic.