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My son received a set of Galt Jungle Pals Skittles at Christmas. They are for children aged over 12 months but, as they are soft, we let him have them at 9 months. The set seems to retail at around £13 online.
The set contains six skittles - all a different jungle animal - and a soft felt ball. Each skittle is soft and made of fabric and contains a rattle so can be shaken to make a noise. The ball contains a jingle bell so rings when rolled. The animals are brightly coloured - so not a true representation of the animals they are meant to be. This makes some of them a little difficult to identify! The animal in the set are: a lion, giraffe, elephant, monkey, leopard and zebra. Each also has a number 1-6 marked on their front. The ball is equally brightly coloured - split into six different coloured sections.
The set comes packed in a pvc carry bag with a red fabric lining and handle. This is good for keeping the set together and clean in the toy box and also for taking the toy out with you. The set is also completely machine washable so easy to keep clean. We have washed it once and they have washed up really well.
The idea of the toy is to enable baby to learn to play skittles and thus develop hand-eye co-ordination and ball rolling skills. The skittles can be stood up and the ball rolled towards them. They are quite difficult to get to stand independently, especially on carpeted floors and this is something that frustrates my son as he tries to stand them. They stand much better on hard floors but, as the base is fabric (albeit a flat design) it is never completely flush and they may have benefitted from a plastic bottom.
At 9 months, my son enjoyed exploring the textures of the skittles and shaking them to hear the rattle noise. As he became more confident with his crawling, he enjoyed a game of knocking these down with his hands as I moved them around the room. As he approaches 12 months, he is learning to stand them up and also learning how to roll a ball. As he develops further, I think he will enjoy trying to roll the ball at the skittles to knock them over - developing his motor skills.
I think that this is a lovely toy that will be used by my son for quite some time. There are lots of learning and development opportunities offered by this set - animals, colours and numbers as well as counting how many skittles have been knocked down. This also gives toddlers the opportunity to work on their co-ordination in a fun way. Had we not been lucky enough to receive these as a gift, I definitely would have purchased these for my son as they are such a lovely set. Highly recommended.
My youngest daughter was bought this toy for Christmas just gone, I have looked them up on the internet and they currently sell at £12.79 on Amazon.
The game comprises of a soft ball with 6 soft skittles and they all come in a zip up PVC bag with a carry handle making it easy to transport the toy. Each skittle is numbered 1 to 6 and each one is made to look like a different animal, there is
1 - blue, red and yellow and made to look like a cat (I think) there is a white number 1 embroidered on the front of the skittle and the Galt symbol embroidered on the back.
2 - number 2 is an elephant which has panels of pink and green around the skittle, I don't really like the pink and green colours together, the elephant has big pink ears with blue insuide and yellow wool for hair, the number 2 is embroidered on in yellow.
3 - number 3 is a cow and the panels on around the sides of the skittles are black and white in colour with yellow wool hair sticking out of the top of his head and a pink panel on his face, the number is embroidered in blue so stands out really well, I think this one is quite cute.
4 - this one is made to look like a lion and I would say this one is the cutest out of the 6, his panels are in yellow and orange and he has a big smiling face, his mane is made out of a felt type material in green and the number 4 is embroidered on in lilac.
5 - this one is red and blue down the sides in alternate panels around the skittle, the head is a monkey and is in red and yellow, the number 5 is embroidered in green.
6 - this one is made to look like a giraffe, the panels around the skittle are lilac and then a yellow with orange splodges on it like a giraffe print, this one has blue fur running down the back of his head and a pink face, the number 6 is embroidered on in orange.
The ball is split into 6 sections which are pink, lilac, yellow, red, blue and green and the ball has a bell inside which jingles. Each of the skittles have a rattle inside so each of the pieces make a noise.
The idea of the game is simply like skittles you stand each piece up and form a traingle shape which you child then uses the ball to roll across the floor and to knock down the skittles, the pieces don't really stand all that well so it can be difficult to get all 6 stood up to start the actual game. I have found that my daughter at 17 months can't quite grasp the idea of rolling the ball but my four year old loves playing the game. My youngest daughter likes to play with the skittles and takes them all out of their bag to put them all back in which is quite funny as they are all supposed to stand up in the bag so they all fit but of course she just throws then in and then gets annoyed that they won't all fit.
I think this toy is a good price as it will be played with for years to come, the pieces are pretty robust and have no fraying or loose threads and they do get thrown around alot, if and when they do get dirty they can be washed in the washing machine. The pieces are all very colourful and you have the added extra that you can use them to help teach numbers and we play animal sounds with them too, I like that they have a strong bag to put them in as it makes keeping them together easy. I would say this is a good toy for a good range of ages and my two daughters love it.