“ Manufacturer: Tesco / Type: Outdoor Play Equipment „
When it was my sons birthday, the only thing he actually asked me for was a plastic litter picker at a cost of £2. I wanted to get him a few bits that I thought would appeal to him, and I spotted this foam rocket set in Tesco at £4, and thought that it would be the sort of toy that he would get some enjoyment out of it, so it went in the trolley.
The set is similar to other sets I have seen in a teaching setting when teaching about forces, but I have to say, it costs £4 and you can tell that due to how lightweight the set is. The set I used previously was sturdier, but then again it was also aimed at older kids really.
My son is 5, so he is a good age for this toy as it is recommended for age 4 plus. The set is really quite basic so there is not a lot to do before you can play. The set consists of a plastic triangular base with a pipe sticking up from the middle to sit the rocket on. There is then a pump with a rubber pipe to attach. This is the sets weak point to me as the pump can become detached quite easily if the child is being too forceful when playing.
The set comes with two foam rockets which have a hole in the middle to sit on the base. The fit is good so these do sit nicely on the base so that they are straight and provides a good upward direction when you launch the rocket. The base is not so light that it blows around and it sits well on grass or the patio outside.
The game is simple, you stamp on the pump which directs pressurised air into the middle of the rocket, and this pushes the rocket up into the air. I find that the rocket does get a good bit of height to it for a childs toy. Certainly above 6 feet from ground level if you stamp your foot on the pump in the right place, or about half that if you are not in the centre.
I make sure the kids play with this in the middle of the garden as the rockets themselves are quite light as well, and if there is a bit of wind, it is likely to blow it into other gardens if not careful.
I like that the set is simple to set up as the kids don't need to ask me to play if they want to get it out. I find that the foam rockets will not hurt even if they come down and hit you, which is good as the pump is quite close to the launch pad. There is a lot of enjoyment to be had from competing with siblings to see who can get it highest, although its hard for the person doing the stamping to see quite what is happening as it is a bit quick to step back and see it in full action.
It's not something the kids will play with for a long time in one play session but they do get this out every time that they go outside to play and it occupies them for maybe quarter of an hour before they want to do something else.
It's definitely for outside as even a small 5 year old can get enough momentum to hit the ceiling within the house, whereas outdoors there is nothing to knock or break in the excitement of the game.
For a cheap toy, its not quite as sturdy as I would like, but I like that the kids can get playing within a few seconds and have a lot of fun being a bit silly with this. It encourages them to be active and to take turns while they play with it.