Vihaan and I enjoy exploring indoor play areas in the city. Our recent playdate at Full of Toys (Jaya Nagar, Bangalore) was a one-of-its kind experience of playing games as a family. I am personally overwhelmed with the conceptualization and execution of the playdate idea that I go a step beyond recommending-the-place to a must-explore-place for parents of children between the ages 4 – 12.
What is Full of Toys?
What started as a toy store, four years ago, is now a fun-filled playdate zone for parents with their children. Imagine you walk in to a toy shop with your kids, pick up a game from the toy shelves without having to buy it, sit around a play table and begin playing the game together with your children. Imagine a few hours of time alone with your little ones without television, mobiles, laptops, guests or newspapers to distract you. Imagine being actively involved in their learning and development while strengthening your bonding with them. That’s what full of toys is about!
What is a Playdate?
What’s unique about the toys?
Surprisingly, you cannot find Hotwheels or Disney cars at Full of Toys. Instead, each of their toys is uniquely designed to enhance learning and developmental skills in children. Below are the descriptions and pictures of a few toys we had played with. For a full list of their toys, visit the Shop section on the website.
Check this video of our playdate:
Vihaan, H and I played Zingo together. Each of us had cards of different sets of images. For every round, the red dispenser would dispense two yellow tiles with images on them. We had to match the images on the yellow tiles to that on our cards. It requires quick attention to grab the tiles matching our cards, soon after the tile is revealed from the dispenser. It took a few minutes for Vihaan to get into the game after which he captured the go and in fact won the game. Zingo can be interesting to toddlers and preschoolers, as it is likely to interest adults as well. It can aid kids’ reading ability and develop quick matching skills.
This innovative game encourages pre-readers and early readers alike to match the pictures and words on their challenge cards with the tiles revealed in the Zingo! Zinger device. The first player with a full card wins the game by yelling “Zingo!”
WEDGiTS Imagination Set
WEDGiTS pieces can be nested, stacked, linked and wedged together to create hundreds of designs. Encouraging imagination, creativity and group participation, WEDGiTS offer endless hours of creative challenge and entertaining fun.
Inchimals are incredibly effective math blocks that teach measurement, number concepts, addition, subtraction, and pre-algebra! Inchimals are 12 wooden animal blocks measuring 1 inch (the tiny ladybug) to 12 inches (the towering giraffe). With exact inch segments, written numerals, representative dots, and cute animals to boot – this learning toy is a sure winner all around!
Rush hour, Balance beans and Story cubes are other games I got a chance to be explained about though we couldn’t try playing.
What did Vihaan feel about the playdate experience?
The games Vihaan played at Full of Toys were nothing like he had played before. All of it were challenging to his little brain and this new experience of having mom and dad involved in the game was exciting to him. His request to take him to the place almost every other day, says the level of interest Full of Toys has created in him.
We are thankful to Full of Toys for this thoughtful gift to Vihaan. With Shadow art kit, Vihaan learnt the concept of how a shadow is created when an object is placed in front of a light source. He also had a creative time in making stories with the characters.
What are my thoughts, as a parent?
Vihaan and I play a lot with cars and trucks at home. However, as he is outgrowing the toddler stage to a preschooler, I often had doubts if I am engaging him with the right kind of plays. Even if I were to introduce a new kind of play for him, I wasn’t sure what it would be. I thank Full of Toys for giving me that clarity of what kind of learning tools a preschooler needs at this stage. Creativity, imagination, pretend play and fun were all that I had concentrated for him all along. This playdate experience has added reasoning ability, quick thinking, problem solving and analytical thinking to it. There’s much I learnt as a parent here.
To write a quick note about the place, Full of Toys hoards a pleasant ambience – well-lighted and air-conditioned. Toys and games are neatly organized for transparent visibility. The furniture settings are of comfortable height and distance for both children and parents. We had the nice opportunity to meet the proprietor, Mr. Gowtham, who has a keen child-centric bent of mind to patiently make children understand and get involved in the games.
Toys and games are also for sale, both at the store and online. With a quick look, the toys might look pricey but considering the uniqueness and the development they offer children, it’s definitely worth. With Christmas nearing, it is a good time to gift children with meaningful toys. Visit the website to get more understanding about the toys.