By Christina VanGinkel
If toy shopping is included anywhere in your upcoming holiday list of shopping to do, (and who isn't shopping for toys!) be sure to check out Amazon.com's fantastic values including free shipping on many of their toy items. I was at their site this morning because my daughter suggested a toy for my grandson the other day, which I have not been able to find locally, the Little People: A to Z Learning Zoo by Fisher Price. The suggested age range for the toy is from a young two year old all the way to a five year old. It is geared to both teach and interact with kids over this wide age range. By both providing animal sounds, along with a fun little tune that is catchy enough to peak a toddler's interest, for individual animals, it will help even the youngest kids learn the different sounds, plus ask questions about the animals when the question mark is pressed, providing lots of interesting play for an older child. It is also an ideal aid for helping your child learn the alphabet, as it has what is referred to as an A-B-C mode, which teaches the beginning letter sound.
With so many toys with a narrow age range, finding a toy that a child can play with for longer than a few months at a time can be a challenge. She had seen this particular toy set up in a hands-on display while traveling for work. She said the minute she saw it, she knew it would be perfect for him this holiday season. Besides including 26 animals, one for each letter of the alphabet, it comes complete with a waterfall, tree swing, a little car with a trailer, a food, and water barrel so your little one can also learn the importance of feeding the animals, and a zookeeper to help keep track of all twenty-six animals. A storage bag for easy stowing away of the whole set when it is not being played with is also included, and I know this was an important factor for my daughter in deciding that this toy would be an ideal addition to my grandson's toy collection. They travel a lot, and bringing along toys that are easy for her to keep track of and store easily is important. It does use three AAA batteries, but because of the nature of the toy, mostly powered by a child's imagination, with the batteries needed for the sounds, I would assume that the batteries would last quite a while before needing replacing.
The animals are all of a chunky nature too, which makes them easy for little hands to hold, and the fact that there arte so many is a major plus for those kids who can become so easily bored with a toy. The variety will keep this play set a favorite for a long time to come. With the Fisher Price name behind this product, you know that it will stand up to repeated playing and be around for the extended length of time a child would enjoy it. If you are looking for the perfect play set to add to your child's toy box this holiday season, I do not think you could go wrong with this ready to play with set.