Nimuno Mats

Nimuno Mats

Nimuno approached me to review their new building mats.

Now I am not a qualified teacher or therapist, but I do homeschool my kids and love these types of educational toys and we have had quite a few over the years. So herewith my review of the product.

Once we unpacked all the squares/mats I started going through the instruction book with them, they were not too keen to do the first 2 levels in the book, “it’s too easy mom” Bare in mind, my boys are 5 and 7. But I asked them to start from the beginning to see if they could do it all as I was not sure they could. Level 1 was easy for them, then Level 2 was not as easy as they first thought. 

I think these mats can be very entertaining and educational for a wide range of ages, my boys absolutely adore them, but if they were still babies/toddlers I know they would have loved it just as much. Once you take the mats apart there is one thin triangle that I personally, with small babies, would just remove, just for peace of mind. We all know they shove things in their mouths

Now I know some will be shouting “hypocrite” because I was just part of the ‘Plastic Free July’ movement, and now I am reviewing a product with plastic components. 

YES, there is plastic involved here and yes plastic is bad, but single-use plastic is a big problem and plastics that aren’t being disposed of properly.

So yes, it would have been lovely if this product was made from wood or something more eco-friendly, but guess what, 90% of your kids’ toys are made from some type of plastic. We all love Lego, and that is plastic. This product would not have worked if made out of wood. In the long run, it is about how we use plastic and most importantly how we dispose of it.

But anyway, back to the topic at hand, the Nimuno mats. The mats are soft to touch which is awesome for little ones, they can play without hurting themselves, if a toddler throws one, no one will get injured and they are also easy to clean. Plus they are BPA free, they are safe for little ones to chew on. They are also ideal to use for playing in the bath.

So how do the mats work? There are 6 levels of play.

Level 1 – You can remove all the inner pieces and ask your child to replace them all in the correct position

Level 2 – Your child gets to pair similar looking shapes mats together

Level 3 – Using 4 mats to create one bigger shape

Level 4 – Making actual pictures, a fish, a rocket, etc.

Level 5 – And this is where it gets interesting, making 3D cubes

There is also a Level 6, but you need both Nimuno sets to do level 6, we only have Set number 1, so we were unable to try this. With both sets, you will be taking Level 5 a bit further as you would be able to build more intricate pictures.

Did you know that playing with these kinds of toys can assist with your child’s development?

A child’s development can be broken down as follows: Cognitive (Academics, problem solving, discovery, curiosity, creativity), Physical(Sensory, fine & gross motor, balance & coordination) and Social/emotional development(sharing, cooperation, self-expression, listening, communication, confidence)

Playing is a very important part of development; playing can help with all the above-mentioned parts and stages of learning.

I find the Nimuno mats to tick quite a few of these developmental boxes. For the younger ones, it plays a big part in their gross and fine motor skills. The mats are also designed in such a way that they do not just fit the first time. You need to actually turn them or flip them over to find the side that fits correctly. This helps with their problem solving development and is perfect for my boys.

Then, and this is why my boys have not stopped playing with them the last 2 days since we received them, is the discovery and creative side of it. They soon discarded the instruction booklet and started building their own things, like a castle in which their Lego men lived and even helmet/mask.

The possibilities are endless. I will be making use of these mats while doing school work as well. Both my boys have moments where they still swap their letters/numbers around. Writing an e or 7 backward, or my youngest sometimes writes his name maiL instead of Liam.

While I was an au-pair in Austria I had to sit many afternoons doing practice sheets with one of the girls to help with her Dyslexia. She had to copy shapes in a block and I think these mats would be perfect for that.

So my plan is to pack the shapes out in a certain pattern and my youngest then has to copy the pattern. There are 24 mats in a set. so this is perfect. I can make a nice long line with 12 mats that he has to copy. We will also be using them while doing maths as there are many shapes we can build with them.

All in all, I give the Nimuno mats 2 big thumbs up. These products would be a great addition to daycares and schools as well.

They have a crowdfunding platform and you can use this link to purchase this wonderful product.

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/nimuno-mats-the-all-in-one-educational-steam-toy#/

YBIKE YBX Review

YBIKE YBX Review



This past Christmas was a super exciting time in our house.

There was a high pitched shriek of excitement when the boys came down Christmas morning. This year there were oddly shaped gifts, which was very different to other years.

This year was definitely an investment in spending more time outside.

Boogie boards, bicycles and then the item they absolutely freak out over.

My husband decided it was time to invest in proper Scooters. Now when I say proper scooters I need to explain what we had 3 years ago. We were at a market in Hartebos and they were selling scooters. I thought at the time “wow, so cheap, what a bargain” and the boys didn’t have a scooter yet. Even though it was only like R300 it was such a waste of money.

My eldest was 5 at the time and this scooter was NOT appropriate for him. It had a super thin wheels with weird thin edges, not the best idea in hindsight. Neither of the kids could balance on it and it was heavy and just plain crap. Needless to say it was donated. Since then the boys never asked for scooters and were quite happy with their balancing bikes.

That was till about June last year, for the first time both boys asked for a scooter for their birthdays (August and September) At the time we were not able to get them scooters because we wanted to spend a bit more on a good quality scooter, so we decided to wait for Christmas.

My husband bought 2 YBIKE YBX Stunt Scooters. Money well spent.

This scooter is designed for ultimate durability. It has a reinforced aluminium deck, which is awesome for two little dudes who are new to scooting and still learning how to scoot and do tricks.

The YBX Stunt Scooter has, 100mm PU cast wheels, high speed bearings, an aluminium triple clamp and pro hand-grips. The age range for these scooters are 5 to 30 years. I have taken a spin a few times at the skate park and so has my husband, and I have to say it is quite addictive. The scooter also comes with grind pegs that can be attached when doing tricks on rails. We are yet to experiment with these babies, but I don’t think it will be long before they get taken for a spin.

A week after Christmas we took the boys to Battery Park, the lovely new public skate park close to the V&A Waterfront. I was amazed at how quickly the boys got the hang of balancing and using the brakes, even my 5 year old.

The hand grips provide a comfortable hold while clinging onto the scooter for dear life while doing tricks. They are soft yet very sturdy and provide great grip, even on hot, sweaty days.

The deck has enough space for both feet to fit comfortably while scooting.

The deck also swings around making it even more flexible for doing all sorts of tricks.

This mamma has a lot of scoot/stunt/trick lingo to still learn.

Between the first visit to Battery Park and the second my eldest went from just scooting, to doing hops, dropping into the bowl and even going down the stairs without missing a beat. Meanwhile my heart skipped a few beats.
These poor scooters have, in the last 4 months, been put through hell and they are still going strong, putting aside some nicks and scrapes, but considering the pummeling they get put through, they are in amazing shape, so they are indeed VERY durable.

Should you be looking at purchasing a scooter for your children, or even yourself anytime soon, I would highly recommend that you invest in a YBIKE scooter. They literally have a scooter for everyone.

From their 3 wheel range which is more suited for the little ones The Cruz and GLX Pro to the YBX which is made for doing tricks/stunts and finally the City Pacer, which can fold away very easily.

There is only one thing I would change about the YBX and that is that it could also fold up, but other than that this is the Rolls Royce of scooters.

The YBX is available from Takealot, Lino Skate Shop, YBIKE and Loot.

YBX PRODUCT INFO

  • Rear flex brake
  • 110mm PU cast Wheels
  • Reinforced Concave Aluminium deck
  • High speed ABEC 9 Bearings
  • Steel Y-bar 460mm (Y)
  • Pro Hand Grips
  • Aluminium Triple Clamp
  • Steel Front Fork
  • Non Slip Deck

MAXIMUM PASSENGER WEIGHT

100kg

COLOUR

Orange & Black