Product Type: ELC Child Development
Newest Review: ... His was a medieval type theme, with the tools being a knight, horse and dragon. The new version (which I actually think he would have pre... more
A Good Introduction to Creative Play
ELC Baby Scribbler
Member Name: kat1234
ELC Baby Scribbler
Advantages: well made, portable, fun, easy to use
My son received an ELC Baby scribbler (Mini Artist My First Scribbler) for his first birthday. It was for use from 18 months so we put it away for a few months until we thought that he was ready for it, which we decided he was at around 17 months of age. This toy is basically an early years version of the classic etch-a-sketch toy. It contains a screen for drawing on, encased in a plastic background (my son's version is blue but there is also a pink version for girls). At the side of the screen there are three plastic 'tools' that your child can draw with.
As with a lot of their toys, ELC update them from time to time and, looking at the website, my son's version appears to have been updated. His was a medieval type theme, with the tools being a knight, horse and dragon. The new version (which I actually think he would have preferred) features a zebra, monkey and elephant. The tools do different things, one draws like a pen, one creates zig-zag lines and the other acts as a stamp to create a footprint. At the bottom of the screen there is a plastic slider that can be moved across and as it positions itself back again it clears the screen for reuse.
As with the etch-a-sketch this works using magnets and no batteries are required. It features a carry handle at the top so your toddler can transport this easily. The tools themselves are chunky and easy to grip, fitting neatly in my son's hand. He does have difficulty removing them from their holes in the plastic when he first gets this out (they do sit in there quite tightly - a necessity for the carry handle feature to work!), but is happy to have them removed and placed on the floor for him to select from. He particular likes the stamp as this squeaks as he stamps it and it also has the most obviously visible effect when he uses it. He also likes to pull the sliding switch across and watch it move back in to play - a feature that he sees as part of the toy itself rather than a functional aspect. I worried initially how this would stand up to his constant pulling, but it has (so far) withstood this well and is still very much functioning after months of use.
As a parent, I like this toy as it is so engaging and invites my son to think creatively and encourages him to develop fine motor skills. It requires the use of his hand and fingers in different ways and helps him to learn how to use a pen to draw. I also like the fact that it is a creative toy without being messy - I can take this anywhere and not worry about my son creating a mess. In that way, it is also great for taking to restaurants or places where my son needs to sit still for a while and be occupied.
This toy prices at £15 in Early Learning Centre, although it is well worth looking out for their sales and promotions when you can pick it up at a cheaper price. I would definitely recommend this toy as my son loves to sit and doodle on this and it does keep him occupied for quite a good length of time too. It is also well made and thought out - with attractive bright colours on the casing and no loose or fragile parts.
Summary: great to learn to draw
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