I appreciate meaningful toys, toys that allow children to use their limbs, as well as cultivate their creativity and imagination.
We were shopping for Christmas presents for the young children in our extended family, and we ended up buying many 4M toys. Not only are their toys affordable, but I also find it worthwhile for the children to spend time creating using the kits. I realised 4M had received more than 70 awards for their toys over the past few years and these are mostly toy design awards. Click here for information on their latest award received for one of their STEM toys.
4M incorporates S.T.E.A.M into their games, toys and activity kits. S.T.E.A.M. stands for science, technology, engineering, art and crafts and mathematics. I previously bought a dinosaur bones-digging set that my son enjoyed.
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So for the last Christmas, I purchased a couple of kits from the art and craft series such as the Mould and Paint, and Switch and Sew for the younger members of our extended family. As we currently do not have older kids age 8 and above, I didn’t look into kits related to S.T.E.M. such as Kidzlab to make volcanos as I don’t think these kits are suitable for our children as yet.
Design Your Own Fairy Chest
I selected Design Your Own Fairy Chest for my daughter as her Christmas present. As she thoroughly enjoyed the process of designing and painting her chest box, I decided to share our experiences here.
The kit is partially DYI, which is great for working mothers and mums like me with too many children. While I would love to make a toy from scratch, time is currently a luxury for me, and I do not have a crafty pair of hands to build a chest with my 6-year old daughter from scratch.
If I want to spend any memorable time with her, it has to be NOW, because, in 2 years’ time, our little girl will turn 9 and may no longer appreciate my presence. So I believe this Design and Paint kit has served my purpose well.
We spent about 90 minutes on this exercise, from painting to fixing the stickers on the chest box. My daughter relished the attention I gave her while she exercised her creativity and fine-motor skills.
The kit includes
– a ready-made wooden chest,
– paints in primary colours (we mixed the paints to create our desired colours and shades)
– brushes ( we preferred to use our own though)
– tattoo stickers and sponge
– mirror to stick on
Minimum paint colours are included, This encouraged my daughter to explore mixing the different primary colours together and into various shades. She decided on the colours she desired and how she wanted to combine them.
We painted the fairy chest in the afternoon and let the paint dry before proceeding to the stickers in the evening
A set of tattoo stickers with a sponge stick to help with the sticker arrangement.
Like any tattoo sticker, we wet the tattoo stickers so that the pictures could stick onto the chest. This required very nimble fingers as many of the stickers were tiny. My daughter tried but destroyed many stickers in the process. Getting frustrated, she engaged my help, but I damaged quite a few too.
There were not many stickers left on the chest, but my daughter was proud of her accomplishment.
It was a delightful experience for the both of us, and I think I will explore getting other kits!
Want to try out these toys too? You can buy them online here.
You can also find 4M kits in Nurture and Craft which is located in Basement 1 of Forum Shopping Centre.
Do you know of any toys that you find meaningful and useful? Please recommend to me.
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