March 3rd, 2011

I’ll admit I totally bought this toy for myself.  I fell for this wooden robot the first time I saw him and saved up my pennies (this is no 2 dollar plastic pig) so I could take him home.  This gentle giant is designed by David Weeks, who has made many super fantastic things like the beautiful and clever flashlight/candlestick combo the castlight.  Well designed toys are much easier to find these days, but they are sometimes more design than toy, know what I mean? But this simple robot is just right. Be warned, once he moves out of cube form you will have to work pretty hard to get him to go back to that convenient shape again unless you are some sort of rubiks master.

We are at a toy crossroads these days, I think. My girl is five and my boy is four (the baby is happy playing with a spoon). They still play with little people ,we call them guys, but they are in pretty rough shape–most have a limb or an ear chewed off by the dog.  Is there a toy like little people for the next age up–playmobile maybe? Blocks and big legos are still going strong. We are slowly venturing into little legos as the baby stops putting everything in his mouth. Do you guys have any recommendations for good building toys? We got Citiblocs for christmas and they are super awesome! I would have never picked them up–they just look like sticks, expensive sticks–but they teach you how to build in a different way than regular blocks do. Anyway, long winded way to say, “hey, do you know of any good quality toys that my kids will play with for years to come, rather than the next three minutes?”

Posted in the everyday.

36 Responses to cubebot

  1. Christy says:

    My girls (5 and 8) love Playmobil and “tree” building blocks. I had some concerns about the tiny pieces as well, but they are shockingly careful about picking them all up when they are done playing. There are sooo many different Playmobil themes, you can match any interest. Also, even though they are a plastic toy the quality is far beyond your average plastic.

  2. Brooke Graber says:

    My twins are 10 and though I catch them from time to time pulling out all of their old dress up clothes(we have soooo many) they generally play with legos and their musical instruments.
    They have gotten really into movie making as of late and have reclaimed my parents ancient recorder. Slowly though, they are putting away their toys and moving into more sophisticated territories, which is why I had to have another baby boy last year, so I can drag out the blocks and wooden worlds, and pots, pans and spoons!!!!

  3. shisomama says:

    we also are big into magnatiles here, though i’ve been trying to push plain old blocks on my kids for some time. this is dashing my hopes of raising future architects here. maybe i’ll focus on the doctor’s kit instead. ;)

  4. Liana says:

    Schleich Pegasuses, unicorns, fairies, dragons from the Bayala line are big here lately (my daughter is almost 5). When she was a little younger, she loved these WonderFoam hard foam blocks—her dad and I did too. You can build things on weird angles, because of the friction of the foam’s surface, and balance them in ways you can’t with wood blocks. We also like the Twigs wood blocks.

  5. Angie says:

    My son (5) still loves his mobilo set ( It is pretty popular with everyone here actually and the best bit is even the smaller bits do not go up the vacuum cleaner!

    Loved looking at all the other suggestions though.

    I have found that rather than lots of different types of construction sets we have focused on just adding to what we already have (mobilo, duplo/lego) and this has worked well for us (and my sanity)

  6. Tanja says:

    Magnetiles are big at my house – I have an 9-year old and a 4-year old and they can play with them for at least an hour – sometimes longer.

  7. Playmobil was a favourite around here (I put most of the little bits away in a baggie straight away, so they were never missed) – and we had some of my old ones around the place, too. Lego is by far the most enduring, though – my son turned 8 and is still asking for legos. We do have lincoln logs and tinker toys etc. for the odd break from legos – and a marble run. The barn that I made my daughter (5) has had a lot of play, but mouse and his matchbox is her big favourite right now. She’s another lego fan, though.