“ Manufacturer: John Adams / Type: Reading - Writing / Age: 4 Years+ „
Silly sentences is a puzzle with a difference. There are 124 pieces to this set which include nouns, verbs and adjectives so that you child can make sentences out of the puzzle. The idea is for your child to make silly sentences to entertain themselves, while still learning how sentences form in the process. I thought this was a brilliant idea. My son never stops being silly so to use this to an advantage, and make an educational game out of it is brilliant. It has proved to be a huge hit in our house.
In the box we were greeted by a massive amount of puzzle pieces. These include nouns such as boy, girl, princess, kangaroo and many more. There is an official game suggested on the box but we just tend to lay the words out in front of us and make a sentence up from the cards that take my children's fancy. The official guide is to lay the nouns face down on the table and share out the remaining pieces. You then take it in turns to lay down one of your cards to make up a sentence with the nouns that are already laid out. The first player to use all of their puzzle pieces up wins.
The nouns all have pictures on so that your child can use it as an aid to know what the piece is. This is perfect for my little girl who is only just beginning to read as it gives her some reassurance along the way. The cards are also colour coded so nouns are grouped under one colour, as are adjectives and each different group of words can be separated into groups by colour.
Age recommendation is 4-7 years which I think is correct. My four year old daughter loves playing this, but it is my son who is 6 that enjoys it most. He absolutely loves the idea of making silly sentences. He usually runs from anything that may be educational, but with this set, all he was worried about was which silly sentence he could make next. I did think with the lack of variety he would become bored quickly, but he has spent hours with this puzzle set. It really has encouraged him to concentrate on how a sentence is formed rather just reading words in a book. I have noticed some improving in his building of sentences, and if there was more variety it would have been perfect for years to come.
What we love about the set is that because it is a puzzle, the pieces will not fit correctly together if it is not a correct sentence. For example the start of the sentence has a flat side so nothing can go before it. Also 2 nouns cannot be placed together or an adjective placed after the noun as the pieces just will not fit together. This means that as little one is putting the sentence together they can use the guides to make a correct sentence.
Even with 124 pieces you are limited to the amount of sentences you can make. The number of verbs available really lets the set down. There are just four in total, so everything jumps, climbs or ate something. With the amount of nouns available it seems a waste to have so few verbs as it really makes the sentences repetitive. A lot of the words and punctuation are repeats so you are unable to make that many sentences despite a huge number of pieces in the set. We have found there to be enough to keep my children interested, but if they had included a larger range of words it would have helped longevity.
My son absolutely adores this set. He was very amused that the sandwich card was labelled hero. As sandwich is a lot more common he was really confused when trying to read this himself and asked me if he was correct. Then I had to sit and explain to him why it was labelled that way, but he was not impressed giving the card a quizzical look. He still uses it but even now after months of use he still seems confused by it. My other moan is the lack of storage. It comes in a cardboard box, but we found this to rip very quickly. This then left over 100 puzzle pieces to find a home for. We ended up with a plastic school folder to keep the pieces safe, but I do think t would have been nice to receive something to keep them in.
I would recommend this set to anyone with children in the target age range. It helps build confidence with sentences while still being fun at the same time. My little boy loves making sentences and calling me to read them out. The pieces are made from durable cardboard and it is something I can play with the whole family. I managed to pick mine up at a little over £2 from Amazon, but it is widely available for around £8. If there had been more variation in the possible sentences it would have been brilliant, but even with the limited cards we love it and would highly recommend it.