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I may be one to try to push my son to play with items that are a bit advanced for his age but that is because I dove head first in to learning fun at an early age myself and it paid off later in school. The Creative Baby INC, I-Mat is a fun educational toy that even pleases my Grandmother, who is not entertained by many toys. This is because the I-Mat not only has play games for learning the alphabet and animals, it can be taught in three languages. We were sent this My Animal World I-Mat to check out for our Holiday Gift Guide!
Most children are most receptive to learning another language at an early age. In Sweden where my Grandmother is from, they learn English in first grade. The I-Mat offers Spanish and Chinese as optional languages to help develop an extra piece of education in to the mix. Not only can you learn in different languages but you can also play a variation of games, therefore giving an educational gift that has lots of growth potential to not become a toy that is pushed away soon from boredom.
The I-Mat including the interactive pen sells for $79.99 and additional mats (shaped as large puzzle pieces) can be bought for $29.99. You can use a USB cord to get updates for the systems and even updates for other mats once you already have the interactive pen. The interactive pen will guide your child in to a fun world of interactive learning. We even found a recording option by accident (before looking at the manual) that was entertaining my husband and son long before they got on the I-Mat to play.
When the UPS delivery guy came he said, “I-Phone, I-Pad, and I-Mat..what?!?!” when I explained what the item was he said he really needed to know how we liked it so he could check it out for his kids. I think many times we feel that giving technology based toys to children is ruining their childhood, the name did throw me off but I am so happy we have taken the chance to learn about this item because it is something I wish I had myself as a child. We have come a long way since VHS tapes and tape decks for learning a new language. Interactive play is truly where the future is heading and this I-Mat play toy allows a child to still have “play time” while also having learning time.
I love that the I-Mat My Animal World and the other mats are all a soft but sturdy foam. It gives a great play area I know is comfortable for my son. I do only allow this to be played with supervision as we have three dogs and Davin is only 13 months old so he does get frustrated and throw things. It has been fun to have him start pointing at the animals as we learn. He will be growing in to this educational toy for quite some time which means the investment is well worth it! There is no way a child can be bored learning all the items on the I-Mat, along with three languages! Even us adults can learn a thing or two from this. Creative Baby Inc really hit this one out of the ballpark and I can’t wait to see what new mats they come out with for the system.
The I-Mat is recommended for ages 18 months and up but I feel with supervision, 12 months is a great time to start playing with your children on it. I know my niece who is almost 5 is going to love playing with it when visiting as it is a small game of hide and seek until you learn where the animals are, then it becomes a memory game! Learning has never been so worldly and educational at such a young age! This tops our Holiday Gift Guide for great gifts I wished was promoted more on television and catalogs!
Author: Nichole Arnold
I’m the owner of Mommy Needs a Bottle . I’m a 30- something wine enthusiast that resides in Tampa, FL. I love family traditions, traveling, cooking, baking, reading, fashion, tattoos, beauty products, and being a Mommy! I have a background in marketing, public relations, copywriting, and sales.