I’m a big fan of giving kids gifts that are learning and fun rolled up in one! Any life lesson, math reinforcement, spelling challenge or science experiment I can sneak in under the radar is a good thing. My latest must-have find? The Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab from Smart Lab Toys, for kids 8 and up. This FUNtastic toy/experiment lab lets tweens create goofy, one-of-a-kind ball runs, and in the process, learn about gravity, momentum, velocity, trajectory, and more! All this with NO BATTERIES–hooray!
Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab Review
The first thing that struck me about the Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab was the number of components kids can use to create their ball contraptions. There are 60 mix and match pieces from which to build, which allows for tons of creativity, and adds to the longevity of the appeal of the toy.
The second thing I noticed was how truly wacky some of the components are like: a chicken in a a coop, a toilet, a boot buster, and a cannon that, if you’ve got your ball run set up right, will shoot out a stunt pig! See what I mean? Goofy stuff that’s right up kids’ alley. 🙂
The third thing that immediately impressed me was the size of the set. The Velcro-like backer board stands 2 feet tall once assembled. That’s a lot of space to work with.[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gNRtLfaYDX8[/youtube]
Our tester and his dad got the Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab set up in about 1/2 hour. Once ready to go, they had loads of fun creating different contraptions, and seeing how each of the components worked, or didn’t work if their design had flaws. Even little sister, who is almost 5, had fun racing balls down the tracks. What was the best part? Seeing the pig shoot out of the cannon, of course! 🙂[slickr-flickr tag=wwlab]
The lab comes with an instruction booklet that outlines 5 different sample designs that familiarizes mad scientists with how each of the components works. From there, kids can engineer whatever set-up their brains can think up! Once experimenters think they’ve mastered the art of building fast ball runs, the Smart Toys website offers them a downloadable challenge to build the slowest ball run and have a “Snails Pace Race” with a friend.
What Makes the Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab a Must-Have Christmas Gift?
- It’s a fun, engaging, thinking toy for kids 8 and up. Kids this age are often glued to all sorts of electronic games. In my opinion, they get too much of that video game type of stimulation.
- The lab encourages scientific learning, creativity, team work, determination, cause and effect thinking…need I say more?
- Kids LOVE hands-on exploration, and they learn a lot while doing it. It’s much more fun to learn science hands-on then from a book!
- No batteries needed!
Smart Lab Toys Website Has a Free Zone
If your kids are at all like mine, they love to learn cool trivia and do experiments at home. I’m constantly finding containers of “experiments” in my freezer when I open it. The fun people at Smart Lab Toys have an entire section on their website called the FREE ZONE, where kids can find a ton of free activities, trivia, crafts, and experiments. Just as with their toys, the Smart Lab Toys Free Zone is designed to be fun and educational. And, it’s updated each week. Love that!
Buy the Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab with a Special Coupon Code
The Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab can be purchased on Smart Lab Toys website. And right now, Smart Lab Toys is offering a special discount to Akron Ohio Moms.com readers! Save 25% at smartlabtoys.com by entering BLOGDEAL1211 at checkout! (code expires December 31, 2011) You can also purchase the Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab Amazon.com, or other toy retailers for about $40.
Win the Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab (Closed)
Smart Lab toys is generously providing a Weird and Wacky Contraption Lab to one lucky Akron Ohio Moms.com reader!
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Contest ends at 11:59pm EST on November 30, 2011 when a winner will be drawn at random. I will notify the winners and they will have 36 hours to respond or another winner will be selected!
This was not a paid post. My own opinions were used based on my perceptions and experience. Thank you to Smart Lab Toys who provided the products for review and giveaway.