KiwiCo offers boxes for different age groups:
- Panda Crate for 0-24-month-olds,
- Koala Crate for 2-4-year-olds,
- Kiwi Crate for 5-8-year-olds,
- Atlas Crate for 6-11-year-olds,
- Doodle Crate and Tinker Crate for 9-16+-year-olds,
- Eureka Crate and Maker Crate for ages 14 and up. There really is something for every age with this company.
This review is of the $19.95 a month Koala Crate, for Pre-K kids ages 2-4.
This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
About Koala Crate from KiwiCo
The Subscription Box: KiwiCo Koala Crate
The Cost: $19.95 a month + free shipping. Save with longer subscriptions.
The Products: 2-3 fun DIY projects for you to do with your preschooler!
Ships to: The US for free, Canada for $3.95 per month, worldwide from $4.95-$6.95.
KiwiCo Koala Crate "Pirates" Review
Well, we made it 7 weeks into the school year and are suddenly transitioning to Distance Learning due to a surge in COVID cases. While I'm happy to be safe at home, I find working from home with a kindergartener and 2nd grader a bit difficult, to say the least. Today was our first day home, and while my kids had the day off, I was on the clock to prepare for how my department will handle the transition to Distance Learning. Thank goodness this yellow box of sunshine landed on my doorstep today! This month's Koala Crate Pirate theme was perfect for my kids to build on throughout the day and keep them busy while I spent the afternoon zooming. See how this month's projects turned out below.
This month's theme was "Pirates" and although I didn't get to create an entire themed day for the boy's due to work, I suggested they come up with some Pirate themed activities to add to the agenda. As I worked on creating contact lists, I could hear them reading instructions in a pirate accent, and arguing over who gets to wear the eyepatch first. The instructions in this box are pretty easy to follow (although the boys had a bit of trouble with one project, more on that below) and easy to understand, the quality of supplies is always impressive, and the fact that my two kids can use this as a team-building and share exercise is absolutely perfect!
Each month the Koala Crate "Imagine!" magazine is included. This booklet contains information about Pirates, along with a Kellan and Ella story, a DIY project, and suggested books to fit into the Pirate theme. While we don't own any of the books that were suggested, we have borrowed "Pirates Love Underpants" from the library, and the kids thought it was HILARIOUS!
As part of our daily chore list, the kids both have to read for 20 minutes a day. The kids are ecstatic to receive this in the mail because this totally counts for buddy reading. I love how sweet the kids work together, and the fact that Hank encourages Charlie to try and read some of the easier sentences melts my heart.
I think I have mentioned this before, but Charlie is obsessed with mazes. This month, the Imagine! booklet included this awesome "Treasure Map Maze" which was actually a 3 in 1....you had to get Kellan, Peter, and Ella to the treasure, which was no problem for Detective Charlie!
This month we received all of the necessary supplies to create a paper pirate hat and eye patch. This project was marked "medium" for grownup involvement, but I think I would have to change that to high. It was a fun project, but I did spend my lunch break helping the boys figure this one out. Look below to see just how it went.
First of all, I love the fact that this paper is printed into a treasure map to follow that ends up turning into a pirate hat but getting there was a struggle for my kids. Like I stated above, the parent involvement gauge said medium, but I ended up having to assemble this. Because I was folding, I didn't get any good pictures, but for an adult, it was pretty self-explanatory, just a little tricky for a 5 and 7-year-old. Once we got the hat folded, we laid down our mess mat (thank you for including this Koala Crate) and colored away. We received these really cool markers that showed up really well on the black paper. At first, you couldn't really see the pink, but once it dried it was really bright! The pamphlet describes ways to create unique designs using the included stencil, so the kids tried their hand at some new techniques which led to a very cool hat. We also received a piece of felt and elastic to create an eyepatch. Thankfully this project was a lot easier and Hank was able to construct this piece of the costume on his own.
No pirate costume would be complete without a parrot pal. This month we received all of the necessary items to create our very own parrot! How was this project to complete? Check out below to see.
To create "Polly" Charlie inserted the elastic into the punched holes on the parrot silhouette. He then stacked his foam feather pieces from largest to smallest and added them to the parrot. The yellow wing piece had adhesive on the back and held all of the other pieces together. Once the feathers were attached, we tied the elastic into a knot and he was ready to wear.
Crazy Pirate Charlie with his new friend Polly
While most other months we received a game to create, this month we received the supplies to build 2 pirate ships. Out of all three crafts, I have to say the boys were the most excited to create this, see below to find out how they turned out!
To create our pirate ships, we covered the work surface with the mess mat and used the included markers and stencils to decorate our sails. Once we were finished adorning the fabric, we let them dry for about 10 minutes. To build the boat, we poked the craft stick through the slit in the center. We then slide the craft stick through the bottom hole in the sail placing the washer on the stick to hold the sail in place. Finally, we slid the rudder into the center slot in the boat. It was then time for a test float, and they worked! We really enjoyed the extra information about what a rudder is and how it is used to help steer the boat. We were able to put the rudder in different slots on the boat and blow them in different directions - very educational and fun!
Verdict: This Koala Crate was really fun and kept the boys busy during my workday. While I was there to guide them through the pirate hat instructions, they were able to take the lead on everything else. They were so inspired by the theme that they brought out our "Capt'n Bones" game, played Captain Hook, and read an entire pile of pirate based books to round out their entire day. I love the fact that this box is so user friendly and well-curated. It is definitely something we look forward to each month, and always makes our day a bit brighter. We can't wait to see what theme we receive next month!
All of the included projects came with high-quality materials, were very well-curated, and were educational as well as fun. My kids learned about Pirates, all while having a great time. I feel this is extremely important and worth the $19.95!
To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? From KiwiCo:
Crates are assigned each month based on availability and your crate history – not all subscribers receive the same theme each month
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
What do you think of Koala Crate?