Finding Quality Information on Good Toys

Finding Quality Information on Good Toys


We all use search to look for products and services whether it’s Google, Amazon, ebay or any of the other myriad choices. Looking for more specific information and more importantly advice that you trust takes more time to find. For us one of the leading websites that offers sound advice based on professional experience is Fundamentally Children.

Dr Amanda Gummer a leading child psychologist who provides lots of very easy to read and sound advice for parents, but the team have also assessed a vast array of toys to come up with an independent accreditation service, in the Good Toy Guide and the Good App Guide.

‘Working with Fundamentally Children and the Good Toy Guide enables us to show that many of the toys we have on offer are recommended by independent experts,’ says Activity Chest’s Liz Royal.

‘With an enormous selection of toys on the market parents may be overwhelmed by the choice.

‘I would suggest using the Good Toy Guide as an information source to find the type of products that will help at particular ages. Even if you don’t buy the exact product they have in the guide, the information about skill development will make an informed purchase of something similar much easier.’

To see the full list of accredited toys go to

Created On  15 Mar 2018 14:35 in How to ... Top Tips  -  Permalink

Science Week 2018

Science Week 2018

British Science Week
, run by the British Science Association is a ten-day celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths, featuring entertaining and engaging events and activities across the UK for people of all ages. This year it runs 
9th – 18th March.

The annual Science Week provides a platform to stimulate and support teachers, STEM professionals, science communicators and the general public to produce and participate in STEM events and activities. Anyone can organise an event or activity and the British Science Association provides free activity and support resources.

Activity packs are available to download and aim to encourage young people to think about everyday discoveries and how they affect their lives by exploring science in the world all around us.

Also this year is 'Citizen Science' with a project based on plastics found on our beaches working with the charity, The Plastic Tide.

Created On  13 Mar 2018 11:48  -  Permalink

Advent Calendars

When did advent calendars change from opening a little card door to show a
Christmassy picture or a saying, to those loaded with sweeties or themed with Peppa Pig or Lego?

As an alternative place a selection of goodies appropriate to the age (children or adult!) in a bag and use either a magnetic calendar or a standard paper calendar for the month of December. Move the disc or cross off the date each day and dip into a bag or box of wrapped mini presents for the treat.

As a bonus the calendar can be used again and again and the theme can change as children grow up. 

And for those beautiful, but a little impractical wooden drawer or fabric pocket advent calendars, it saves the problem each year of finding suitably sized items!

Created On  7 Nov 2017 12:40 in Events and Activities  -  Permalink

Are we there yet?

Are we there yet?  

Are we there yet? How often do we hear that when travelling? Preparation is key. Jumping in the car and setting off as you did before the family came along will no longer work! Be realistic about what you can cover with children in the party and plan for a slower pace of travel with more frequent stops.

Make ‘getting there’ part of the holiday.  By involving your children in the preparations, they will feel the journey is worthwhile to get to the next stage of the holiday.  If your child hasn’t any other concept of holiday except the destination, it’s no surprise that the journey is of less importance to them. Break down the journey into bits so that the excitement and enjoyment will be extended.

Use stops in the journey be it by car or by plane to break the pace. Get out of the car and throw a ball about or walk around the airport lounge looking at the people and place and discussing what they see and hear. An airport has an amazing number of things going on!

Many parents ensure their children have their own carry bag with a few things they want with them such as a favourite toy, but leave room for a few surprise treats, wrapped up to maintain the surprise. F
or younger children try card games like Go Fish or themed snap cards. Use them at intervals throughout the journey and don’t forget the return journey so hold some back for then. 

Entertainment on the move doesn’t have to be complicated. For babies something small and simple, even a few building blocks to put together and take apart again will entertain and can be reused later in the trip. Toddlers love picture books, pop-up books, and reusable sticker books that are not expensive and can be reused.

Although we live in an age of electronic games which are great for travelling, school age kids can still have fun with old-fashioned favourites such as Dot to Dots, Noughts and Crosses, and simple word games. In cars games that involve everyone like I-Spy, the I-Spot game (decide before you go on a few things to spot such as a green lorry, white building, blue writing) and Hangman where everyone in the party takes turns to say a letter and guess the word. And car registration plates have always provided entertainment making up words and silly sentences with the letters. 

To remember the holiday encourage children to take photographs, pick up postcards, keep tickets and keep a diary with how they felt and the emotions of the day. A scrapbook of the holiday could also be used for show and tell at school.

So for calm holiday travel, do some thinking and preparation before you go, get the kids involved on the way and have games ready to use when needed.  Simple!

Created On  18 Jul 2017 11:06 in Education and Learning  -  Permalink

Science Week

Science Week
Science Week brings attention to the STEM subjects in schools and how science affects children's futures.

Science teaching in schools starts at an early age with a few hours a week in primary schools. Science lessons should not only educate, but engage and entertain, igniting children’s imaginations and bringing learning to life. Outside school there are plenty of simple and safe science kits to do at home.

This year’s Science week focuses on Change in Colours, States, Environment, and Our World. have activity packs for preschool, primary and secondary students.

Even very young children can join in during sensory play mixing colours to make fluid patterns.Each year the lack of engineers in the UK is highlighted. Engineers need a maths and science background, so take the wrong GCSEs and the next step to qualifying is difficult.  Choices are made early – probably too early as most children won’t know what they want to do in later life.

This morning the BBC reported from Birmingham NEC where The Big Bang Young Scientists and Engineers Fair in Birmingham is taking place. This is the largest celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) for young people in the UK with hands on activities, shows and stands to talk to engineers from leading UK companies.

The Fair also hosts the prestigious Big Bang Competition, inviting young people from across the UK to compete for lots of amazing prizes, including being crowned UK Young Scientist and UK Young Engineer of the Year.

Created On  16 Mar 2017 12:56 in Education and Learning  -  Permalink

World Book Day - Books are Good

World Book Day - Books are Good
Where would any story teller be without imagination?  How would JK Rowling have delighted so many children with Harry Potter and friends without her mind conjuring up the weird world of Potter?

Imaginative play is key and with the right stimulus kids create the most amazing stories with new characters playing alongside themselves.

World Book Day is invaluable encouraging the love of books, early learning and reading, turning the pages, firing up the imagination - and also dressing up to become part of those stories for a while!

Most children also enjoy dressing up as their favourite character, but World Book Day is the annual mum’s nightmare to produce a costume.

But don’t panic! 

Created On  1 Mar 2017 11:27 in Education and Learning  -  Permalink