Inchimals Giveaway and Review

I’ve mentioned before that if you are a student in our homeschool then you may begin formal instruction in several subjects later than your peers.  This doesn’t mean that our children aren’t learning these subjects, we just prefer that they learn more naturally through experience and interest rather than text books.

Our children are introduced to math through everyday living and play.   Timberdoodle, a long-time resource for homeschool supplies, recently sent us Inchimals, one of their hands-on math toys.

What is it?

Inchimals is a set of 12 blocks painted with charming animals, inch measurements and numbers.  It’s a fun, hands-on way to introduce math terminology and concepts to your children (age 3+).  From the 1 inch ladybug cube to the 12 inch giraffe block, Inchimals shout fun and beg to be played with.

Each block has it’s corresponding numeral painted on one end and the equivalent number of dots on the opposite end.  The sides of each block are clearly delineated into inch segments for easy counting and measuring.

Young children will enjoy naming the animals and  building with the blocks.  They will quickly learn to sort the animals into ascending and/or descending order and experimenting with measuring and equivalents.  They will discover that if they stack the penguin on top of the tiger they will be the same height as an elephant and that their drinking cup is as tall as the rabbit.

Bigger, smaller, taller, shorter, counting, adding, subtracting and equating are all introduced and explored while the child spends time playing with blocks.

For ease in introducing addition and subtraction skills, the Inchimals set comes with a spiral bound write-on/wipe-off book with 100 puzzles and a dry erase marker.  The puzzle book is color coded (yellow=addition, green=subtraction, etc.) and the puzzles progress in difficulty allowing the child to expand upon the things they have already experienced.

How we used Inchimals.

Both our 2 and 4 year old boys loved stacking and building with the Inchimals as well as acting out stories with the painted animals.   The snake slithered and the frog hopped across the table while the giraffe towered over, watching.

With a bit of help Colby (4) quickly learned that he could measure and tell me the length of various books and other items.

Check out his expressions

 

He naturally moved on to finding equivalents.  He loved figuring out which pairs of animals were the same size when stacked together.

Sorting the Inchimals into order didn’t come as naturally and he enjoyed the challenge.

Savannah (5) was delighted to see the puzzle book and within a few minutes was working her way through the first sections.  She has asked to have Inchimals in her school box every day this week and is happy to have her very own math assignment.

What we thought

The concept and design of Inchimals is outstanding.  This is the type of toy that I seek to have available for our children.  I appreciate  that they are open-ended and beneficial for a broad age range.  We especially appreciate toys that are educational as well as fun and Inchimals fall into this category.

The open-ended play and the imaginative possibilities of blocks with characters on them are ideal for creative play for multiple ages and contribute to the toy’s longevity and usefulness in our home.  Inchimals are effectively designed to easily introduce children to math concepts.   Having the inch segments on the sides in addition to the numerals and dots for children who don’t yet recognize their numerals broadens their scope and allows a wider age range to benefit.

The color coding in the puzzle book made it simple for me to tell Savannah what I wished for her to work on and allowed her to work independently.

Our set of Inchimals has been used and enjoyed by most of our children.  The older ones have enjoyed using them to estimate and to visualize and figure perimeter.  As usual they’ve even figured out ways to compete using Inchimals.

My one complaint about Inchimals is the durability.  The paint was chipped and scraped on many of the blocks within minutes of taking them out of the box and by the time we finished using them nearly every block had at least some paint damage.

I will say that after a full week of solid use they are still lovely and very usable and we haven’t noticed much more damage to the paint than we did the first day, but it’s something that I would want to know if I were considering a purchase.

Pros:

  • Open-ended, creative play
  • Delightful, charming and beautiful
  • Excellent and versatile design for introducing and practicing math concepts
  • Useful for a wide age range of children
  • Puzzle book allows a bit more formal math practice
  • My kids LOVE Inchimals and wish that I didn’t have two cons listed!

Cons:

  • Quality/durability (see above)
  • Box/storage – You may think that this is being a bit picky, but the box that Inchimals comes in is rather large compared to the actual size of the blocks and book.  With 12 people in our household, I always consider storage issues before purchasing something for our homeschool and I will probably throw out the Inchimals box and find something else to store them in.  :)

Buy It

You may purchase a set of Inchimals from Timberdoodle for $26.95.

Win It

Timberdoodle is giving away a set of Inchimals to one Raising Olives reader.

To enter:

  • Visit Timberdoodle.com and leave a comment on this post telling me one item that you saw on their site.

Extra entries: (Please leave an additional comment for each extra entry.)

  • ‘Like’ Timberdoodle on Facebook – (Psst!  For the next 5 weeks Timberdoodle is running daily giveaways on their Facebook page.)
  • Share a link to this giveaway on your Facebook page
  • Tweet about this giveaway
  • Sign up for Timberdoodle’s email newletter or request a free catalog.

Giveaway is open to US residents only and will end at 11:59pm on Thursday, October 14.

This giveaway is now closed.  Congratulations to Deirdre for winning the Inchimals set.

I received a free set of Inchimals to facilitate this review.  I was not otherwise compensated and all opinions are honest and are my own.

Included in the Homeschool Curriculum Review Roundup.

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274 Responses to Inchimals Giveaway and Review
  1. Colleen - Sunrise Learning Lab
    October 12, 2010 | 1:47 pm

    Went to the Timberdoodle website. Love so many of their things, but especially the complete curriculum set for grades 1-2. Also love all of the various Lego products they carry.
    Great giveaway! We would love to win Inchimals.

    cmbmomof2@yahoo.com
    Colleen

  2. Colleen - Sunrise Learning Lab
    October 12, 2010 | 1:48 pm

    Liked Timberdoodle on FB.
    Colleen
    cmbmomof2@yahoo.com

  3. Beth M.
    October 12, 2010 | 2:18 pm

    We love Teaching Textbooks for our oldest, and I didn’t know Timberdoole carried it! Good to know- we’re almost ready to go up another level…

  4. Emily
    October 12, 2010 | 3:53 pm

    Love timberdoodle! my kids would love the foam saddle scooter and fun gripper bean bags! Would sure love to have the Inchimals!

  5. Laura Shumaker
    October 12, 2010 | 4:30 pm

    Smencils – scented pencils.

    I have a little guy right now that we have just recently thought about homeschooling and even though he’s young, he would love these learning blocks now!

    Thanks for the chance.

  6. Sara
    October 12, 2010 | 4:45 pm

    I like their geopuzzles!

  7. Alisha
    October 12, 2010 | 8:02 pm

    The Purplinker looks so neat! And inchimals looks very cool too! My kids would all love playing with these!

  8. Alisha
    October 12, 2010 | 8:03 pm

    I just “liked” Timberdoodle!

  9. Alisha
    October 12, 2010 | 8:07 pm

    I also signed up for Timberdoodle’s email list.

  10. Erin
    October 12, 2010 | 10:05 pm

    I love smencils. The kids love writing with them.

  11. LaVonne
    October 13, 2010 | 12:13 am

    I’d like to incorporate more art in our Homeschool Preschool. So I like the set of 6 art books – Big Skills for Little Hands.

  12. LaVonne
    October 13, 2010 | 12:14 am
  13. Julie
    October 13, 2010 | 3:20 am

    I saw APOLOGIA science!
    I have been dying to buy Apologia – and right on the front page is Exploring Creation with Human Anatomy and Physiology, which is exactly what we need right now!

  14. Julie
    October 13, 2010 | 3:21 am

    I just ‘liked’ Timberdoodle on fb.

  15. Julie
    October 13, 2010 | 3:22 am

    I just posted a link to this giveaway on my fb page.

  16. Julie
    October 13, 2010 | 3:26 am

    I signed up for Timberdoodle’s email newsletter.

  17. Malissa Earwood
    October 13, 2010 | 9:56 am

    Settlers of America Trails to Rails. This also looks like something we would enjoy.

  18. Stefanie
    October 13, 2010 | 8:50 pm

    I like their curious chef stuff… especially the nylon knife set!

  19. Kelly
    October 13, 2010 | 11:01 pm

    I went to the website and the LEGO DUPLO fire truck caught my eye. My lil’ man would love it for his upcoming birthday.

  20. Tiffany
    October 14, 2010 | 1:09 am

    Too much to love from Timberdoodle! I thought the Kid-O Bilibo looked interesting. And now I’m more interested in the Inchimals after reading your review…I like it when the kids can learn on their own! Btw, the link to timberdoodle from your site didn’t work for me; it led to an error. Thanks for the giveaway!

  21. Tiffany
    October 14, 2010 | 1:10 am

    And I already get their e-newsletter…not sure if that counts, but it’s worth a shot. :-)

  22. Colleen - Sunrise Learning Lab
    October 14, 2010 | 9:57 pm

    Forgot to also add that I signed up for their newsletter.
    Would love to win Inchimals…
    :) Colleen
    cmbmomof2@yahoo.com

  23. Darci
    October 14, 2010 | 11:27 pm

    I love the wedgies and flubbed….
    Thanks for the giveaway and great review..
    My boys would love these
    Blessings
    Darci

  24. Nataliya
    October 15, 2010 | 2:22 am

    Bubber Play & Create Sets – that must be fun.

    Nataliya.

    ynat31@gmail.com