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My son really loves anything to do with trains, and since he was about two and a half we have started to build up a Brio train set for him. At Christmas "Santa" added to his Brio some new tracks and a few new trains.
I ordered my Brio from Amazon as they were doing some good deals and I got one pack of curved tracks and two packs of straight tracks for £17.50. Each pack has four track sections so altogether this has made a nice extension to my son's track. The two types of tracks we got were the medium and long length ones. The long, as in the picture above above are coded 33341 and are about 22cm long, so adding around of 88cm of track to play on from this one box.
My son is almost three, which is the recommended age for Brio, however I do think he was ready to play with it from two and a half, with some adult intervention. He can now put the track together himself, even if it sometimes doesn't match up and has lots of dead ends, but I feel this is part of the play.
The track itself is sort of like a jigsaw and I feel it helps develop coordination skills. Also, I find the Brio is excellent for creative play and my son will draw other toys into his train play, such as cars, Lego and plastic animals. So the track has more than one function, there is the building of it and then the actual playing with it, although mostly these are done side by side. Whilst he is playing with the track and train he talks a lot about what he is doing, and makes train etc noises which is really quite cute.
My five year old daughter also likes joining in too so I can see this Brio being played with for quite a few years to come. The downside is that it is quite expensive, but if you can get pieces on offer, or even second hand then I think it is worth it. Brio is made from good quality wood, beech I believe and nicely carved and sanded down. The joints seem easy to put together even for little hands, so it's a well thought out toy. Each piece of track can be used on both sides, so one curved piece can curve to both the left and right depending on which way up it is.
Brio seems to be hard wearing and although is often chucked into a box we keep it in doesn't seem to scratch or dent. The wood is wipe clean too, as sometimes I have found food and sticky little finger prints on the tracks which I wipe with a damp cloth.
At the moment we would be lost without this Brio and it is keeping both my kids very entertained! Plus, I have to admit I rather like playing with it too!
WHAT ARE THEY?
Long tracks for use with Brio railway systems. They are about 22cm long and can be used with other railway systems that feature the same style of tracks.
These tracks are available in packs of 4 and are made of beech wood to make them durable but with a bit of a soft touch. They have got standard connections on each end and that is what helps them to fit other brands of railway without any bumps at the joins. The tracks are straight and true and help my daughter to make a much bigger railway for her small trains. The wheel ruts are perfect for her Learning Curve trains and the trains or carriages never get stuck because these are shaped so well.
WHAT I THINK
I bought 2 packs of these long straight tracks recently for my daughter and they have been played with a lot already. She has lots of pieces to create all manner of railways but these very long tracks are more useful than I thought they'd be and they let her make much larger tracks without any real extra effort. I like how they are such good quality and that the tracks fit together smoothly and easily because there are no rough edges on the connections at all. They also lie nice and flat when you've made your track up and because they are good quality it doesn't matter if you're doing in on carpet because they won't ride up over a bit of bumpiness.
When our younger relatives come over to play we use these long tracks together with the long curved tracks and then even a three year old can put together a big oval track for the trains to go along. Because of them being beech wood they will last for a long time but I prefer the lighter appearance of the rubber wood tracks that we have from another railway system.
WHAT MY DAUGHTER THINKS
My daughter is nearly 7 so she can put tracks together easily with no help. She likes the long length of these and has asked for me to buy her some more so that she can make even bigger railways, I will because I like to encourage this sort of imaginative play and we are both very happy with the quality and size.
A pack of 4 long straight Brio railway tracks costs about £5 and are for children aged 3 and above.
5 Dooyoo Stars.
4 pieces of wooden long straight track. While stocks last, special packs now include 2 extra pieces. 3 Years +