Top critical review
12 of 12 people found this helpful
Not so good for little ones
on 21 February 2015
I bought this toy so my 3yr old could practise copying patterns and do free play putting shapes together. The shapes themselves are fine. They are well made and a good size for little hands to work with (small enough to promote fine motor development, but not too small to be too fiddly). The pattern/picture boards included are drawn with shapes the exact same size as the shape pieces, with the idea that children will be able to place the shape pieces directly on to the wooden boards to make the picture. This was the reason I bought this version of tangrams as opposed to other versions that have smaller pictures to copy, as it is easier for young children to copy directly rather than copy a picture. However, the pieces are extremely slippery on the picture boards, to the extent that it is frustratingly impossible for young children to work with. Whenever my child attempted to join a new piece to the picture, the other pieces would slide out of place, even with the lightest of touches, and even when I showed him how to do it. This aspect of trying to play with this toy was simply making my child frustrated, as he understood the concepts required to complete the picture, but the physical requirement of having to be so precise when adding new pieces was too demanding. The physical dexterity required was something even I found annoying, so I'm not sure how the manufacturers expect children to cope.
I ended up buying a self-adhesive magnetic A4 sheet to cut up and stick on to one side of the tangram shapes so they are now magnetic. We use them on a cookie tray and my little one copies the pictures.
If you are considering buying this for young children, I would recommend going for a magnetic version instead. This one is just too frustrating to work with.
Also, the box this comes in doesn't have a lid. Just a piece of plastic that sits on top, so you have to buy a new box for it.