Advantages Teaches a wide range of things, colourful, suits lots of ages
|Value for Money|
As usual when it comes to my childrens birthdays numerous members of the family have no ideas and give me the money to find some presents, I found this discovery tree for my eldest first birthday 3 years ago and at the time it cost £25 and seems to be available for the same price now which did surprise me.The tree is made by Vtech which I personally feel is a very good make and very educational so that gave me confidence immediately, the tree is aimed at children from 3 years and up but my eldest had no problems playing with this and neither does my youngest who is 11 months.
The tree is made of hard plastic and is very sturdy and not a surprise at all I'm sure it is shaped like a tree! The tree has a branch to one side with a swing hanging from it and the balls are popped into a hole at the top of the tree and then they slide all the way to the bottom and along a keyboard. There are five balls with the tree yellow, red, green, blue and orange and each one has grooves on it to make it represent an insect ie the yellow is a bumble bee and the red is a ladybird. The balls have little eyes drawn on them and are made of hard plastic, youngest enjoys sitting and banging two balls together which is great as I believe doing this has helped develop her hand eye coordination.There are 5 coloured buttons on the main top of the tree and each one is a different colour which is the same colours as the balls and also pictures the insect on the coloured button that is represented by the ball along with the numbers one to five. When pressed each button makes the sound of the insect drawn on it although I am not actually sure a caterpillar makes a noise but according to the tree it does. My girls play with this tree together and my eldest will imitate the animal sounds which my youngest finds really funny.
On the branch of the tree there are a further three coloured buttons each with A, B and C on them and a picture which starts with the letter and above these I the speaker where the sound comes from. The aim of the toy is place a ball in the hole at the top and it will slide top the bottom, half way down the slide there is a squirrel which can be pulled out to stop the balls. Depending on which ball is placed in the top depends on what the tree says, when the ball fierst goes in the tree recognises which one it is and announces which animal is on the ball and then when it hits the keyboard at the bottom it announces things such as A to E and 1 to 5 depending on which ball it is.The keyboard at the bottom has 5 different notes in five different colours with a different number of notes drawn on each key. Each of the keys lights up and can be played on their own aswell as with the balls, after the keyboard the balls fall round to be used again but one of them lands on a seesaw style lever which your child can press to send the ball flying back up.
The tree takes 3 x AA which were included with the toy and after three years are still going strong which is great as I find some childrens toys seem to eat batteries. There is a little compartment in the base to hold the balls when not in play which a flip door and this is the only part of our tree that is showing wear and tear as the door keeps coming off as it has loosened over the years. The toy can be used to teach many things such as numbers, colours and letters and it has many different phrases and bits of music which keeps children entertained for hours.Both my daughters love this toy and it a great toy for them to play with together and at their different ages they both get different things from the toy. The tree is very brightly coloured and very attractive to childrens eyes and has a lot of detailing such as little animals engraved within the leaves of the tree which I thought was a nice touch and we have spent time seeing what we are able to find. The toy isn't too annoying either as it has that many phrases and sounds it is not too repetitive and there are two volumes options for when you are fed up of hearing it. This toy is fantastic value and is not something that will be discarded after a month or so like many toys, a fantastic buy and well recommended.
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