Toy Review: Magnetic Tiles by Pythagoras People

This is a very special birthday gift KT got from my parents this year. It’s special not only because it came from my parents, it’s special considering the distance it travelled and the number of people who helped in bringing it over. My dad first saw this set at a friend’s house in Singapore and kept raving about it. He didn’t know how to describe it. He said, “It’s something like building blocks, but not blocks!” I had no clue what he was trying to say. He was so impressed that he asked one of our friends in Japan to pick one for KT. And that’s where it’s two month long journey began. It flew from Japan –> Singapore –>Kerala –> Tamil Nadu and finally made it to our home in Hyderabad!

Magnetic Tiles Pack

It was only after seeing it, I kinda figured what Dad was trying to say. It’s a set of magnetic tiles in different geometrical shapes. It’s designed in such a way, that the corners of one tile gets stuck to another in any direction. It’s designed for 2 – 6 years olds. Younger kids can have fun sticking the tiles together and creating basic 2D shapes, while older kids can create structures and animals using the instruction sheet and their creativity!

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All the instructions are in Japanese. But fret not! It comes with diagrams, plain and simple, that anyone to understand! This set improves the child’s logic and mathematical reasoning. It is also said to provide stimulus to the right side brain while kids use their creativity. And encourages the child to proceed from 2D to 3D thinking patterns!

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KT and her friends love this set! They play with it almost every other day. They make doll houses and castles!

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I am not sure if it’s available in India. However, though not the exact ones, there are similar magnetic tiles available on Amazon!

Thank you dad and all those who lugged it around for us! We appreciate it =)

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KT’s Favorite Rhymes/Cartoons/Games :) (Suitable for 2 – 4 yr olds)

My brother and I grew up with no TV in our house. As a result TV barely had any influence in our lives. But in KT’s case, I never allowed her to watch kids programs on TV since the time she was a baby. Most programs on Cartoon Network, Pogo, Nick and likewise never appealed to me. In my personal opinion, the programs are either too violent (one superhero battling another) or poor in language, sometimes senseless and lacked meaningful, positive content for kids. Some times you just wonder what the producers wanted to instill in young innocent minds through their programs.

Well, therefore, I used to spend hours on end on YouTube browsing for good videos that KT can watch. My search was fruitful. YouTube has a humongous collection of good quality videos for kids. It probably is the only glimmer of hope for Indian parents!

Also, during our 5 month stay in the UK last year, KT (and I) fell in love with CBeebies (BBC’s channel for children). It’s from 6am to 6pm with pure, unadulterated programs for children, completely advertisement free! It has programs for different age groups and specially challenged children as well. Their programs focused on numbers, alphabets, phonetics, rhymes, show and tell, languages and what not. The creative ways in which they teach the children is something every parent will fall in love with!

When we returned to India, we were over the moon when we found out that Tata Sky and Airtel were airing CBeebies! We subscribed for it immediately. However, in November last year, to the disappointment of countless parents, BBC stopped broadcasting CBeebies across Asia! Cutting a long story short, I am back at the mercy of YouTube!

Anyways, here is a quick list of KT’s favorite rhymes/cartoons/videos/games –

Rhymes

Mother Goose Club

Super Simple Songs

Kids TV 123

The Wiggles – They are an Australian children’s group – KT’s all time favorite. Their songs and videos are very catchy. They have a lot of series on different themes. I have around 8 of them.  You can also find their songs on YouTube.

Cartoons

Charlie and Lola – We were introduced to them while we were in UK and it was love at first sight. Charlie is a very responsible big brother who loves his little sister Lola to pieces. Lola is cute and adorable, but she has her own problems and can get a little annoying at times. The entire series revolves around how Charlie creatively solves Lola’s issues with immense patience. Their language is something I gotta mention. They have the cutest British accent ever and they come up with ridiculously adorable phrases!

Here’s one of their episode. Now you’ll know what I am talking about!

Peppa Pig – This again is a British cartoon. As you can see in the picture, it’s about a little girl pig and her daddy pig, mummy pig and little brother George. She loves jumping in muddy puddles. She has a lot of animal friends her age. Each episode is either on an adventure or something fun she does with her family. The language again is very simple and music to your ears. (Most episodes available on YouTube!)

The Numtums – They are ten animated creatures who make numbers easy peasy to learn. One number (from 1 – 10) is chosen in each 5 minute episode. The children are shown that particular number in different forms in such a way that it gets registered in the child’s mind! Here’s a sample video –

Dora the Explorer – She needs no introduction and it is the only program KT is allowed to watch on TV!

Online Games

Well, yes, KT plays online games – once a week under my guidance! I am a big time advocate of CBeebies and KT plays games only from their site. The games are beautifully programmed for toddlers and all that a child has to do is press the space-bar at the right time! If you have a webcam, that makes things all the more creative and interesting. In one of the coloring games, the child just needs to wave her hand in front of the camera and the monitor will get colored. Doesn’t that sound amazing?

All their games are uber cool, but here are the one’s KT loves –

Baby Jake’s Drive and Find Game

Raa Raa Hide and Seek

The Abadas Word Game

Bouncing Numtums

Squiggle Cam (This is the one where you wave your hand to color)

Show Me Show Me

So… Tell me, what does your child enjoy listening/watching/playing the most? I’d love to check them out. Please leave a note on the comment box below!