There haven’t been many reviews on Penny Plays recently as we’ve tended to focus on working our way through the ridiculously large collection of vintage board games as a way of getting through lockdown. In that time though the youngest member of the family seems to have suddenly gone from being a baby to an active toddler.
Part of that transformation coincides with her developing a love of books and starting to dabble in small world play where she acts out some of the things that she’s seen in books.
At the moment one of her favourite bedtime books is *Stomp, Chomp, Big Roars! Here come the dinosaurs! and after reading it every night for as long as I can remember she is now in a position to receipt large chunks of it on her own. The book, combined with Andy’s Dino adventures on CBeebies means that she is dinosaur obsessed right now, making it a perfect time to review the *Gelli Worlds Dino Pack from Zimpli Kids.
If you’re a parent, you may well be already familiar with some of Zimpli’s products as they produce the wonderfully names *Slime Baff and Gelli Baff that we’ll be featuring on here very soon. I’ve also seen there general packs of slime and gelli that you can make at home, but until they sent me their dino pack to review I wasn’t aware that they had branched out further with their Gelli Worlds range.
The Dino Pack is a wonderfully simple twist to using their products, but one that has my little girl absolutely obsessed right now.
The Dino pack comes with a pack of six plastic dinosaurs and two plastic trees to create your dino world with. As well as five packets of gelli to make your dino swamp you also get what I can only really describe as an inflatable tray. Think of a small rectangular shaped mini-paddling pool and what I’m writing might make more sense.
This dino paddling pool is exactly the right size for a couple of children to play with their dinosaurs in and makes a perfect swamp for the dinosaurs themselves. With the green gelli it honestly couldn’t be any more perfect for acting out some of the poems in Stomp’s, Chomp, Big Roars! One is entitled Walking to the Swamp, and then there is a later one called Dinosaur Dive where Nick Sharratt’s excellent illustrations show five dinosaurs diving into a green swamp. If the design team behind the Dino Pack are not fan of the book then I’ll be very surprised.
The gelli itself not only provides some great sensory play for young children, but also just adds a whole new level of interest for their dinosaur small world play.
I also want to make a special mention of the dinosaur paddling pool (as it’s become known in this house). With all messy play at home finding an appropriate container can be a real pain. Storing said container when it is not in use is yet another problem. This pool works so brilliantly in so many different ways. Firstly, having inflatable sides means it’s actually quite difficult for little hands to pull it off a table. They just can’t grip it well enough. The weight of the water and gelli in the pool also weighs it down nicely and the plastic bottom doesn’t slide easily on a hard surface when full. When you’ve finished playing with it though you can just rinse it out, dry it and then deflate it before tucking it away in a drawer or cupboard with the other small world toys. It takes up such a small space when flat and as a parent of three in a house full of toys that is an absolutely amazing thing.
Honestly, I just can’t speak highly enough of this dino pack. Our daughter sat down and played with it for a good hour on the say it arrived. The longest she has every played with anything. The next day she asked for it out again and was disappointed when we only filled the pool with water at first. I can see that we’re going to have to stock up on gelli for her.
It’s just delightful to see her though acting out one of her favourite books in such a lovely way. A perfect example of a well thought out educational toy that encourages imaginative small world play as well as a sensory experience.
Back to the big roars and playing in the swamp with my little girl and her dinosaur collection!
Disclaimer: We were sent the Gelli Worlds Dino Pack as part of a bundle of Zimpli Kids products to review. A further post will follow featuring the Gelli Baff and Slime Baff. All opinions in this post are my own. Any links in the post marked with a * are affiliate links. If you buy a product via these links it will cost you no more than if you had visited the site independently, but I receive a small commission from your purchase. Thank you for any purchases you do make. Your support is very much appreciated.