I was given three 4M STEM toys to try out with my kids and review from Toysmith. We received the Make Your Own Llama Doll, My Unicorn Stepping Stone, and My Unicorn Faux Leather Pouch. We decided to make the stepping stone as a family project. My son wanted the llama doll and my daughter wanted the unicorn pouch.
The Llama Doll and My Unicorn Pouch are recommended for kids ages 5+ and the My Unicorn Stepping Stone is recommended for age 8+. My daughter is 3 and my son is 5, so we are below the recommended age range for these products.
My Unicorn Stepping Stone
The My Unicorn Stepping Stone ended up being our favorite kit. I did the cement mixing and pouring, and I would recommend other parents to do the same, especially if you have younger kids like mine. After I mixed and poured the cement into the mould, my kids had a blast decorating the cement unicorn with all of the jewels and glitter sand that came in the kit.
We used every single gem stone and all the glitter sand on our small stepping stone, and our Unicorn is beautiful! After about an hour, I used the stick provided to carve a smile, eye, and our last name into the cement. We all love our finished product and have placed it in our backyard garden!
My Unicorn Faux Leather Pouch
Since my daughter is only 3, I knew I would be helping her with the My Unicorn Faux Leather Pouch project. It looked so cute on the box and I was excited to help my daughter create a fun unicorn pouch because I knew she would love it.
My enthusiasm quickly waned when I started reading the instructions. It required lots of complicated embroidery stitching, and I know neither one of my kids could attempt the stitching yet. I have experience in sewing and embroidery. It took me at least 3 or 4 hours to complete this pouch on my own. I enjoyed the (mostly) quiet alone time, focused on completing this project. My daughter was very happy with her finished project, and I was proud to have made her this pouch.
The instructions were well written and easy to follow. The kit came with all the needed materials and they are of good quality. This is a well throughout-out and executed project. But unless your younger child is passionate and enthusiastic about unicorns, crafting, and embroidery, they will likely find this project extremely challenging. I would not recommend this for children under 13. I found it to be a challenging project with my mid-thirties age and previous experience. I cannot imagine a 5 year old being capable of completing this independently.
Make Your Own Llama Doll
My son was very excited to get started working on the Llama Doll with me. This kit was age appropriate for him, and he was able to complete at least 50% of the project independently, and the remainder was done by me, or with my help.
My son was able to punch out and put together the cardboard pieces, and wrap the yarn. He wrapped the legs, and began the body himself, but the size of the body made it difficult to wrap with yarn and I helped him complete it. I also braided the bridle for him, and we attached the saddles together.
My kids were excited about the finished llama, but it is more a toy for display than to play with. It quickly begins to fall apart if the kids start to play with it.
I would recommend these three projects for preteen aged kids who enjoy crafting and sewing projects. These are interesting craft projects and require following instructions, measuring and cutting yarn and thread, learning new skills (such as difficult embroidery stitches), and problem solving (we ran out of double sided stickers, what else do we have at home that would work?).
Although we faced some difficulty with our kits, I will consider 4M products for future for my kids because they were well thought-out projects with adequate materials and detailed, easy to follow instructions. Looking at the other 4M products on the Toysmith website, it looks like they do have a few interesting STEM toys that may be worth checking out. The Unicorn Crystal Terrarium looks like a fun science project for girls, and I’m sure my kids would love the Kidzrobotix Bubble Robot and Money Bank Robots.
If you are interested in the Llama Doll for your kids, I have good news! I’m giving one away this week on my Instagram account! Head over to my account and look for the post with the Llama Doll toy to enter to win! If you don’t win the giveaway and want to purchase one of these three toys, you can find them on the Toysmith website.