3 articles Tag VTech

Best Friend

best friendI know it’s a cliche when parents think their kids are little angels, but in Sausage’s case, it really is true. She’s a lovely, kind little girl who seems to radiate ‘niceness’ everywhere she goes. Just last week, one of the canteen staff at her school pulled me to one side to tell me what a kind, polite little girl she is and it left Husband and I beaming with pride. Having such a sweet kid can sometimes have its downsides – other kids sometimes take advantage of her good nature and in Reception year we had trouble with one class member who really knew how to manipulate Sausage and play on her good nature.

Fortunately, Sausage has made a little group of firm friends who I really like and who all seem to have lovely, sweet natures like my own tender-hearted little girl. At the end of year 2, one of the members of their little group changed school and it left Sausage feeling a bit lost without one of her besties. Luckily, the rest of them banded together and Sausage is now even closer to her group, especially to the single male member of her clan who, I must say, is quite the little gentleman and has solemnly promised Husband and I that he’ll take care of our girl – and I believe him, too! Given that Sausage was quite a girly girl, I never expected her to have a male bestie but it seems to work really well.

Dr Angharad Rudkin is a clinical psychologist and Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society and has worked with children, adolescents and families for over 15 years and has teamed up with VTech to give us Toot Toot Friends Ambassadors some really useful information about the concept of best friends. She says:

“Strong friendships often develop when a child is in a situation without their parent (e.g. nursery or child minder). Usually, it is the parent who acts as a safety blanket for their child – someone that their child turns to if they’re feeling unsure, someone who can give reassurance and encouragement. If a parent isn’t there, children will turn to other children for some of this support. Friendships can develop when a child finds it comforting, distracting and fun to be with another child – the more they spend time together the more comfort they will derive from this friendship. Whether a friend becomes a best friend can be highly dependent on the parents though. If a child talks a lot about another child from nursery, parents can act on this and invite the friend over for a playdate. However, if parents chose not to do this, there’s a good chance that the friendship won’t become quite so cemented.

As every adult knows, even best friends can be annoying or bewildering. However, a best friend is someone who is there through thick and thin, and who doesn’t hold a grudge. The same is true for little children. They won’t always get on with their best friends, and in fact may squabble with them quite a bit. However, their connection means that they make up easily and are quick to forget what made them cross. Children can also rehearse how to make up with friends by playing with dolls or figures such as the VTech Toot-Toot friends. Children, for example, can pretend that the Toot-Toot friends have had a disagreement before helping them to make up. Such imaginary play helps children to build up their confidence in making and keeping friends.”

Does your little one have a BFF? Do you ever worry bout a lack of best friend in their life or do you wish that they were less dependant on a best friend and broadened their friendship horizons slightly? Leave me a comment below.

Win a Framed Caricature of Your Child and their BFF with VTech and Mum’s the Word!

As you’ll probably know if you read THIS post, Burrito Baby has been chosen to be an ambassador for the VTech Toot Toot Friends range of toys, which means that my living room is currently full of lovely brand new toys amongst all the moving boxes, and I have one seriously happy toddler! VTech, being the lovely people that they are, are offering one lucky Mum’s the Word reader the chance to win a framed personalized caricature of their child, along with their best friend, just like the one below:

TTF Social Media Image[2]

We think this would make such a lovely addition to a nursery or childs’ bedroom – to enter, send an image of your child and their friend to jayne@mumstheword.me and tell me which Toot-Toot Friends they would like to be and why along with your name and contact number.

  • The competition is open to UK entrants only
  • All entrants must have gained permission from the parents and/or guardians of those entered
  • Prize consists of 1 personalized A4 Toot-Toot Friends caricature
  • By entering the competition you agree to allowing VTech to post the caricature to the VTech Toys UK’s Facebook and Twitter page and also to this blog
  • Any personal information will be used in connection with this competition.  It will not be disclosed to any third party except for the purpose of fulfilling the prize where applicable
  • Three attempts will be made to contact the winner. If there is no response from the winner within 7 days, an alternative winner will be selected
  • The prize is not exchangeable for cash or any other prize
  • The competition will run from 8th October 2015 to 15th October 2015
  • The winner will be selected at random

We’re VTech Toot Toot Friends Ambassadors!

A few weeks back, Burrito Baby and I received the awesome news that we’d been chosen to be VTech Toot Toot Friends Ambassadors and would be receiving all of the new range to play with and review. As you can see, BB was over the moon! The smaller characters retail for around £8.99 each, while the Trot and Go Pony is £15.99. The Hospital playset is a very affordable £29.99 and even the Discovery Sounds House, which is the bigger of the two playsets, is only £44.99.

VTech Toot Toot Friends

What we discovered, being Toot-Toot Friends noobs, is that all of the playsets can link together, forming a big town, and each character can be used in all of the different areas. Want to take your horse to the hospital? Go right ahead! These areas are called ‘Magic Points’ and allows kids to use the individual  characters to interact with the play sets. There are also points within the Busy Sounds Discovery Home where characters can sing to one another, something that BB seemed to regard as being akin to magic!

BB has really good gross and fine motor skills for her age (I mean, the kid is NEVER still, even when she’s sleeping!) but all of the elements of the characters and the playsets were solid and easy to hold, even for the tiniest hands. It also feels like it would stand up to a whole lot of toddler punishment, too; BB has developed a habit of throwing things when she’s in a mood but I can’t see even the biggest toddler tantrum being able to do damage to the Toot-Toot Friends! That’s why when buying toys parents should always look at the sturdy toys. Durable gifts for 2 year olds that can endure hits and tantrums is important. Less money wasted, and more time for fun.

I really like the fact that these feel like “next level” toys in more ways than one; in terms of BB’s development, they feel more in-depth than all the other ‘flashing lights, ABC, 123’ toys that she has and they also feel like they incorporate all of the things that babies of this age love with the technological expertise the VTech is famous for. They’re interactive, educational and intuitive, all things which I think are important for development through play.

If I had ONE minor complaint, it’s that the stickers are a little bit fiddly to apply when you’re assembling everything, especially as some of them are located behind or inside certain parts. If you’ve got a steady hand, you’ll be fine, but the best advice I can give you is to assemble everything when you don’t have an excited, slightly tyrannical toddler climbing all over you.

I also think that selling all of the characters and sets separately is a great thing. It means that you can still buy Toot-Toots friends toys even on varying budgets, and if a birthday or Christmas comes around, the playsets can be bought as a main present, while the smaller components can be bought by friends or relatives to build a full and comprehensive collection.

BB and I feel like we’re off to a great start as ambassadors for VTech Toot-Toot Friends – we already love the toys and can seem them being a great source of fun and education for BB in the months to come.