Harley and the giraffe

26 Jul

Our fantastic feature, ‘Santa’s Little helpers is going awesomely well! We have some great reviews lined up from some brilliant brands. This evening I write the last of my three reviews for the Wooden Toy Shop who me and the children have loved working with this past month! So, far my daughter has reviewed the lovely Melissa and Doug Stamp set and Little Man has proved that Cricket can be a great game for Children on the autism spectrum, even when played alone :) 

 So, now it’s the turn of the littlest Elf, “20m old little bro” his had great fun reviewing one of, ‘John Cranes Tidlo Chunky puzzles’ 


 This Chunky wooden puzzle has seven pieces, Its brightly coloured safari theme was a hit with our little monster! One of the reasons we chose this puzzle was because of it’s funky theme. Harley, aka Little Bro loves Giraffes right now, he loves the CBeebies programme, ’64 Zoo Lane’ with Georgina the Giraffe. The Giraffe along with six other animals, a Hippopotamus, Lion, Zebra, Camel, Elephant and a Crocodile make up all the pieces of this fun puzzle. 

 The John Crane Tidlo chunky safari puzzle is designed for children aged 12 months plus and can be purchased from the Wooden toy shop for a very respectable £10.79


 Little Bros face lit up when we got the puzzle out of its box ready to play. “Look, Giraffe” was something he continually said for the first five minutes before finally turning his attention to some of the other animal pieces. We had fun together naming each animal piece and it really encourages social interaction and gets your toddler attempting words such as Hippopotamus,”Which proved quite a mouth full” Hippo was the better alternative for this little monster. 

 The puzzle pieces are really chunky making it look almost 3D. This also makes it easier for the child to pick the pieces up so great for little fingers like Little Bros.

Every now and then I lost the little guys attention and he would climb down from his chair and dart around the room shouting, “Giraffe” waving it in the air like he was flying the thing like a plane. Eventually he would come back and after a while he seemed to be getting to grips with what he was doing. Sat at the table I removed all the pieces, Little Bro Lined them up and I then placed them all back in place. He looked at what I was doing seemingly taking it all in before trying it for himself. The puzzle has the picture of each of the animals where each piece is designed to fit,  making it easier for the child, as they can identify where each piece should fit by looking at the pictures. Little Bro did this bit with ease, however he did have some trouble getting the pieces to fit and become frustrated as he tried to place the giraffe in upside down. When Mummy attempted to show him, ‘Little Mr Independent’ almost throw a fit. 

 Once Little Bro had finally placed an animal correctly in its position, I clapped offering lots of prise. He happily gave himself a clap too and felt encouraged to try another. After one or two more I noticed that he was finding the task much easier. 


 This is a lovely toy, the wooden puzzle is very well made and is beautifully designed. It can be a fun educational toy for a toddler helping them to develop good hand eye co-ordination, fine motor skills  and imagination (as Little Bro demonstrated during the review, when he used the pieces as toy like figures). I found it hard to give this toy a rating on my toddlers behalf! Though he clearly liked the puzzle he did have a tendency to lose his attention quicker then some of the toys his played with. Saying this, it should be mentioned that whenever Little Bro ran off the giraffe went too. He really likes the giraffe piece and since the review he has taken the giraffe from the box and took it for a ride in his wooden trailer. 

Its a hard one but I give Harley’s rating as an 8/10

 Parental approval 

 I think the toy is great Value for money and plan to purchase the John Crane Tidlo Animal farm for his birthday. It comes in a sturdy thick cardboard box which is a must when storing puzzles, due to us having to take them in and out over the course of the early years. The puzzles brightly coloured design is great visual stimulation, the overall design is very inviting. The pieces are really nice and chunky and the picture matching along with shape shorting makes this lots of  fun while helping improve and develop a child’s hand, eye co-ordination.

The John Crane Tidlo gets a fat 9/10 from me

 The Retailer

 Over the past month I loved watching the children review just a small handful of the beautifully designed toys the Wooden toy shop has to offer. This is an online family run business that offers its customers a friendly service, speedy delivery and importantly, “Good value for money.” All three products have proven a success with all three  Little helpers. This with the fact they have offered our readers the chance to bag themselves a, ‘John Crane children’s wooden Guitar’ in our blog giveaway (which can be found here) makes them a firm favourite of mine. 

This is a retailer who offer support to schools and nurseries not only by offering them 10% off the advertised price but also entering them into a draw to win unwanted products that have been returned and cannot be resold due to the removal of packaging. Schools are automatically entered into the monthly draw every time they make a purchase. 

 10/10  for the Wooden Toy Shop a  fantastic online retailer! 

One Response to “Harley and the giraffe”


  1. Winner of the Santa’s Little Helpers Competition « A boy with Asperger's - November 17, 2011

    […] Harley and the giraffe (aspergersinfo.wordpress.com) […]

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