Amazon STEM Toy Club Review, Ages 5 to 7 – July 2018
This subscription looks like any other shipment from Amazon, with no exterior branding on the box or special insert.
There are 3 age range options:
- 3-4-year-olds (counting, building, and cause and effect)
- 5-7 year-olds (hands-on experiments and explorations of electricity, earth science, and simple math)
- 8-13-year-olds (more complex projects and experiments based on principals of physics, chemistry, and engineering)
My Subscription Addiction paid for this box. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
This is a review of the 5 to 7-year-old age range Amazon STEM Club, $19.99/month.
About This Educational Subscription Box for Kids
The Subscription Box: Amazon STEM Toy Club
The Cost: $19.99 per month
The Products: Each month you will receive a different, age-appropriate STEM toy.
Ships to: U.S. (free shipping)
July’s Toy: Think Fun Robot Turtles with Adventure Quest Coding Board Game
Think Fun Robot Turtles Adventure Quest Coding Board Game – Retail Value $29.99
This was a completely new kind of toy this month. I love that we received a board game! Especially one that we have never heard of before. I was also excited to see that this was for ages 4 and up so I figured I would be able to test it out on my daughter even though she is just outside of the intended 5-7 age range.
This was started as a Kickstarter campaign when some parents decided to create a game for their twins that would teach some basic programming skills such as problem-solving, forming a line of code and fixing bugs. They included this quick start guide on top in addition to more detailed instructions.
The instructions provide a lot of detail and include a list of the contents of the game.
I love how much silliness they encourage in this game. They say you should be creative and make up your own story about the turtles and their quests. They also recommend that the Turtle Mover make silly noises as they move the turtles, in fact, they state that it’s their job to do so.
The pictures included are in color and show you exactly what to do with the pieces which include gems, wooden blocks, ice blocks, and bugs.
The tips in the back are great and I think are incredibly useful in teaching a child to play the game. For example, using the word forward instead of up for the arrow was something I learned to do immediately to help eliminate some of the confusion about the direction for my daughter.
To begin the game you place your turtle on its mark on the board and then give each player their three piles of direction cards for turning left or right and moving forward. They also get a bug card.
A bug card is basically a redo card. A child can yell “bug” and tap their bug to indicate that they want to cancel their last move. I love that this is an option- it’s a great way to teach a child that you can fix your mistakes, which will be a great coping mechanism for them in other areas of life!
To begin the game, we set the gem in the middle of the board and then my daughter was able to give me cards to show me what she wanted her turtle to do. We started out slow and our first round ended up in a lot of extra (unnecessary) cards as she took a very roundabout route to get to her gem as she got used to the game.
Once we got the hang of it, I introduced a few ice blocks. These were in her way and she had to find her way around them to get to her gem.
Once we mastered that, I introduced the laser card which she can give me to melt an ice block so that she can pass over it.
This is the way the game is played, you can continuously add more and more to make the game more challenging and increase the interest of a child. These are all of the “unlockables” that you can use. We didn’t get past the laser card, but she has been asking to play again, so I’ll probably introduce some stone walls next time! There are also “function frogs” which I haven’t quite figured out how to use yet, but I love that we can take it slow and learn together!
In addition to the basic board game, we also received this Adventure Quest expansion pack. You receive 10 Adventure Cards, 32 gemstones, and 12 Frog Favorite cards. These are to be used once you have mastered the original Robot Turtles game. While we haven’t become experienced enough to test these out yet, I love that one day when we get tired of the original game I can bring this out for us to play!
They also provided a link on the back where you can get ideas for more quests and find more resources about coding for your child.
Verdict: We really enjoyed this game from Amazon’s STEM Toy Club! I read a review on Amazon that said their 5-year-old got bored with it quickly, but it seems like there are so many options and ways to increase a child’s engagement in the game by adding in the adventure quest cards that I don’t foresee that happening for us. I think part of the excitement is in how the Turtle Mover presents the material, too. I had a lot of fun working with my daughter to solve this game and I think that my enthusiasm definitely rubbed off on her! It was so fun to see her little brain working to try and get to her gem. It taught some great skills such as learning directions and problem-solving, which I think are so important and will definitely transfer to other areas of life. The game originally retails for $29.99, but we only paid $19.99 which is a great value for a game that I think we will be able to build on!
To Wrap Up:
Value Breakdown: The cost of the subscription was $19.99 and we received a toy valued at $29.99. That’s a savings of $10 on this toy!
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