A Chance to with a Play Rabbit Hutch in February 2017!

That’s right – we are giving away one of our most popular wooden toys at Wood and Wonder. The Play Rabbit Hutch is a fantastic way to show your little one the basics of caring for a pet before they get the real thing! A very cute toy which is up for grabs in February 2017.

Play Rabbit Hutch

There’s a few ways you can gain a chance to win. Firstly, I should mention that we will draw the winner at random from a hat early March 2017. Everyone can gain up to five entries into the draw from the five different methods of entering the draw. However you can only gain one entry from each separate method. For example you can share our competition post 10 times on Facebook (and thank you very much for that!) however that will only count as one entry. However if you share the Facebook post and retweet the Twitter post, that’s two entries.

So here are the five different methods of entering the draw, all of which must be done in February 2017 to count…

We will announce the lucky winner in early March via Facebook and Twitter, but we will also contact them directly.

Best of luck to everyone and if you have any questions please feel free to contact us.

Why is role play such a good way for children to learn?

Imaginative play is something which comes in so many forms in childhood. Even though it seems like a simple and uncomplicated form of entertainment for kids, it really is a fantastic way to enhance a child’s development and help build healthy minds. Our resident teacher Miss Cook takes a look at why role play is such a great tool for learning.

The reason role play is so engaging to most children is because they will naturally want to mimic the adults around them. It then becomes our job to guide, accommodate and present challenges to enhance their development. This, for example, could be us becoming a customer at their pretend shop.

Role play can encourage children to want to play with other child in their imaginary world. If other’s are involved, even if they aren’t children, this interaction can help develop social skills. Entwined with this is the development of their language and communication skills. Role play could help a shy child come out of their shell as it may encourage them to express their ideas and solutions to problems.

We often hear children verbalise their thoughts to themselves whilst they are playing as they talk through their thought processes and act out the characters’ roles. This is a way for children to develop their language skills and their understanding of the the world around them. They might replicate actions and vocabulary that they see or hear at home (e.g. play kitchen or play DIY).

Accommodating your child with role play toys which they can associate with something they have seen in the real world could really help to enhance their problem solving skills. This extends to toys not specifically designed to mimic adult routines but those that involve making something new, for example building a bridge with a construction set or building blocks. Problem solving could develop their creativity, particularly if the toy is colourful and engaging. It could inspire them to play more and pursue the development of the skill that they are learning.

Overall, role play toys can really transport a child into a different world where they can have the confidence to be who they want to be for the day or for as long as they like! This is why we as parents should actively encourage role play as much as we can. We can be their customer in their play hairdresser’s salon, their guest for pretend dinner or their apprentice at their make-believe workshop. It’s a wonderful thing to see the magic and creativity in their own little world – all the time learning, and they don’t even know it!

Peter Rabbit Lands at Wood and Wonder

We now have a beautiful range of Peter Rabbit toys from the wonderful storybook from Beatrix Potter, all now available at Wood and Wonder all by Orange Tree Toys. They really are a perfect addition to any nursery for boys and girls.

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We have two wonderful products designed to help your little one find their first steps. These are the Peter Rabbit Push Toy and the Peter Rabbit Pull Toy. Having the same character help them find their feet and carry on through with them as they learn to walk will really help improve their confidence. We’ve previously written a blog article on the benefits of push and pull toys and how they can be used to help your child learn to walk – please click here to read it.

Another beautiful item is our Peter Rabbit Musical Carousel. This gorgeous music box gently rotates as it softly plays Brahms’ Lullaby. A beautiful product to sooth your little one off to dream land. On the carousel we have Peter Rabbit, Jemima Puddle-Duck and Mr. Jeremy Fisher.

There will be more products added to this range in the new year!

Push & Pull Toys – How do they benefit my growing toddler?

Wooden push and pull toys are an excellent way to help your little one take their first steps and continue with them as they begin to walk around. But why are they beneficial? We hope to answer that.

Start with Push Toys

Push toys are designed for infants who are just about to find their feet. Our wooden toys have rigid poles which will help them firstly get to their feet and provide the stability they need at this very early stage of walking. I suppose it would act in a similar way to a walking stick.

Then as they begin those first steps, the push toy will help act as a buffer for obstacles up ahead – a sort of look ahead tool. The skill of avoiding obstacles is something we all learnt at some point and this kind of toy will certainly aid this.

As with all children’s toys, the design should actively encourage your children to want to play more. This is achieved in our wooden push toys by the ‘clacking’ sound generated as the toy rolls along the floor and the bright hand painted colours, safe by European standards of course. Having a character they love always helps too.

Help your little one along by showing them how to do it – push the toy along the floor. They will want to imitate you and this will encourage them to really develop their new skill.push-toys-small

Then move onto Pull Toys

Once they’ve mastered the basics and have started toddling along with their new push toy, introduce a new friend in a pull toy. Again help them in knowing what to do by pulling the toy along to help them imitate you. But why now a pull toy?

A wooden pull toy will aid the development onto more advanced stages of their new skill. So far the push toy has helped identify obstacles by alerting of those ahead, now the pull toy gives a new friend to concentrate on behind them as they walk. A friend in the character of the toy along side them will give them the confidence to explore that big wide open space ahead. Now as those coordination skills develop. your toddler will have to avoid obstacles themselves. Be on standby for the odd bumped head!

Of course these are all essential coordination skills we take for granted as an adult, but we all learnt them at some point!

See our range of Push or Pull toys in our My First Toys section.

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DPD Delivery and Shipping to Europe!

A wonderful advantage of wooden toys is their robust nature. It’s one of the many reasons we love them. They are the kind of things you buy for your children and one day hope that they pass onto their children. After all how many of us know Grandparents that get out their wooden toys from their childhood for their Grandchildren.

The unfortunate thing behind the advantage of their strength is their weight. Again, not a bad thing in their day to day use, but for shipping from Wood and Wonder to you, well that can present a problem. We work hard to try and keep the costs of postage down. It’s why we introduced a weight based system on our website. It allows our lighter items to be posted for less! Services that cost less are slower and in our busy lives sometimes we just want our order right now! This is why we have introduced a speedy, tracked delivery service, with a 1 hour delivery slot so you don’t have to wait in all day long only to have your parcel arrive at 4:59pm!

Those of you in the UK can now select the DPD delivery service in your basket. Prices start at £7.80 for 1-2 day DPD tracked delivery with a 1 hour delivery slot.

We are also going to add the opportunity to leave a message for your courier, for example if they can leave it in a safe place. This is mainly for myHermes.

We’ve had a few messages in the past asking if we are able to post to Europe. Well I’m now pleased to say that this feature has now been added into our online shop for a selection of European countries. The full list can be found on our terms and conditions page, however you can simply select which country you are in on the shopping basket page when selecting your delivery.

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Up to 2kg we can post using Royal Mail International Standard post (at the UK end of course) which takes between 3 and 5 days from dispatch. The alternative for heavier orders is DPD taking around 2 to 5 days from dispatch with all (except Austria, Sweden, Slovenia, Denmark and Latvia) offering a 1 hour delivery slot.

That’s all for now.

Slán, Au Revoir, Auf Wiedersehen, Vaarwel, Adiós, Tchau, Ciao, Do Widzenia, Sbohem, Åddi, Viszontlátásra, Zbohom, Zbogom, Farvel, Adjô, Sudie, Ardievas

 

Learning about time

In our first article on our new WordPress blog, we’d like to take a closer look at one of our products.

This week we will focus on the Goki Colour and Shape clock. It is recommended for ages 4+ and is built from a robust sustainable solid wood. Like any clock it has an hour and a minute hand which can be moved freely. The numbered 1-12 markings come apart from the clock body as a jigsaw puzzle.

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The learning begins with the assembly of the face. Reenforcing the numbers 1-12 connects the lessons they may have already learnt about numbers with the different application of time. The puzzle also develops hand-eye coordination and reasoning.

We at Wood and Wonder would like to share a valuable asset to you in our blog. A current primary school teacher called Miss Cook is always willing to offer her advice to us on the educational value of our products. This week she offers us some advice on how to teach time.

Miss Cook says:

“I’d recommend using this clock from the age of 4, firstly as a jigsaw puzzle to help apply the numbers 1 to 12. They could even be used as separate pieces to help make a start counting in twos. Slowly piece the clock face together and work on the meaning of the big and small hand.”

“At this age it’s best to focus on the o’clocks. Once they have grasped this securely you can move onto half pasts followed by quarter pasts. Use a circular piece of paper, fold it in half and colour each half into a different colour to demonstrate half past and into quarters to show quarter pasts and quarter to.”

“This is an excellent tool that can begin with your child at an early age when they are just grasping numbers. As they progress to year 2 (ages 6 and 7) they start at school with half pasts and quarter pasts, right through to year 4 (ages 8 and 9) where 5 minute increments come in. This clock can be with them all the way.”

The clock is priced at just £15.00. Please click here to see more on the Goki Colour & Shape Clock.

Launching our new website

It’s an exciting time at Wood and Wonder! We have just launched a brand new website, with new features I think you’ll like.

Firstly we thought it was important that whilst browsing any of our new linking categories you can filter out those products which don’t interest you by brand, price, type, theme or minimum recommended age. We believed this was important to allow the website to grow along side your child. Allowing a search of all of our products on our website is a great new feature too.

We also wanted to create a loyalty system for our customers. If you create a password now at checkout, you will have an account with us. This will primarily be used to store your loyalty points. You earn 1 per £1 spend on the online store and can redeem them as money off (2p per point) any order once you have 50 or more points.

This isn’t just for new customers either, we will send loyalty points to all of our old customers!

Further to this, we have enhanced our Birthday Club. If you enter your little one’s name and birthday into our website (alongside a couple of Mum or Dad’s details), we will send you a voucher a couple of weeks before their birthday. Just so we can give you time to buy anything from our website for them, ready for their special day.

Our website now accepts all major credit and debit cards through WorldPay, as well as PayPal we just had before.

We have also reduced the cost of packaging for some smaller items by introducing a weight based postage system. The postage will be automatically calculated in your basket based upon the weight of the contents. Some items can only be carried by courier, and your basket will reflect this. If you have any problems with this please email us on info@woodandwonder.co.uk

As always, for all orders over £75, we will offer free delivery.

We hope you find the new website suits your needs, and please feel free to send any feedback to us using the above email address.