As I mentioned in my last Schleich review, with nearly a three year age gap, it’s rare to find toys that appeal to Jack as much as they do to Phoebe, but Schleich figurines are a huge hit with both of them and they regularly while away many an hour letting their imaginations run wild with the various animals we have in our ever-growing Schleich collection.
Renowned for encouraging educational play, Schleich’s figurines have been designed with attention to detail and are perfect replicas of the real deal. They have been hand painted with care, ensuring each figurine is totally unique and although they may be slightly more expensive than other figurines, they are well worth the small premium thanks to their exceptional quality and robustness. They also feel like real heirloom toys; timeless toys that can be handed down through the generations and I love the thought that maybe one day my grandchildren will get just as much joy from them as Jack and Phoebs do.
As part of Schleich’s ‘ Educational play the Schleich Way’ campaign, they have created a 16 page brochure that is jam packed with useful hints and tips for parents to help their little ones get the most out of their playtime. Covering topics such as a balanced play diet, encouraging imagination and early language skills, it really is a wonderful resource for encouraging imaginative play and development. The brochure is free to download and all that’s required is a Schleich toy or two and a wonderful imagination!
I found the information about a balanced play diet really interesting as it’s something that I hadn’t really sat down and thought about before: “Children need to spend their time enjoying many different areas of play includin9 Social Play, Active Play, Creative Play and Free Play. As with a child s nutrition, there is such a thing as too much of a qood thing and it works the same way when it comes to play. A child who spends all of his time on sports, while neglecting games that encourage imaginative play, never experiences free play, whilst a child who spends hours in front of a screen will not develop well-rounded social or physical skills.”
There are also some brilliant game suggestions in the brochure to stimulate your child’s imagination and I’m sure we’ll be playing a lot more of ‘Animal Restaurant’ and ‘What’s the animal?’ over the coming months (You’ll have to download the brochure to find out how to play them!)
Along with the brochure, Schleich also very kindly sent Jack and Phoebs these three black and white beauties to add to our collection. Phoebe literally squealed with delight when I opened the envelope to reveal them and they have already been ‘introduced’ to all their play mates, although judging by the scene in our kitchen this morning, it would appear that all the farmyard animals weren’t too keen on the zebra joining their gang!
The benefits of imaginative play are extensive and include creative thinking, language development, a boost in self esteem and emotional intelligence development to name but a few. I’m also a huge believer that children learn best through the power of play and often the best toys are the ones that your little ones adore playing with, but are learning without conscious awareness. Schleich figurines definitely fall under this category and I will encourage Jack and Phoebe’s love for Schleich figures at every opportunity.
If you would like to download a free copy of the Educational Play brochure please click on the image in my sidebar to the right.
For more information and to view the full range of Schleich figurines and accessories visit the Schleich website and follow them on facebook and twitter. Schleich toys start at just £2.99 and are available on their website or at Smyths Toys Store UK.
Disclosure: We were kindly sent these Schleich figures for the purpose of this post, but all opinions and images are my own.