Review: Giant Fairytale Activity book
I never thought this day would come. It seems stickers may have slipped from top spot for my sticker-addicted daughter. Oh, they’re still high up on her ‘things I love’ list, but suddenly drawing and colouring has taken over.
Which means that as long as I can provide reams of blank paper and an inexhaustible supply of crayons, pencils and felt tips (which we’ve accumulated anyway over the past three years), Minnie will quite often sit engrossed. This bodes well for long-haul flights.
It also opens up a whole new world of activity books. Which we’ve had several to while away the time on planes before, she’s only really been in it for the stickers, made a token appearance of doing the puzzles and then it’s been stuffed back in the bag. Times, however, have changed.
So when Parragon sent me our latest book to review, I practically had to hide the Giant Fairytale Activity book to spot Minnie pouncing on it instantly.
As it was, it kept her entertained for most of a rainy day indoors.
The book itself is split into sections based around a classic fairytale – the Three Little Pigs, the Princess and the Pea, Hansel and Gretel, plus Little Red Riding Hood, with colouring, spot-the-difference puzzles, mazes, counting puzzles, drawing suggestions and all kind of other games.
For each story, there’s an added animal to find on each double page, and you tell the story as you work through too which is a nice bonus. The cover promises over 100 things to doodle, colour and do, and I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s an under-estimate.
At three and a half, the level of difficulty was just right for her as well. There was one copying option, where you get grids to show you how to recreate a picture, which she flatly refused to attempt and insisted I try. As you’ll see from the pig drawings, I am no artist (yes, some are mine, some are a three-year-old’s: spot the difference) so even mine was wobbly.
But it would still entertain slightly older kids, and there’d be enough for younger ones to try too. And having worked through several fairytales together, she happily finished the book solo as I tried to cook – with only intermittent requests to tell her the story.
There are enough little details when you’re working through together to keep everyone happy too. The spooky eyes in the ‘creepy caves’ – one of the obstacles in a maze – were an unexpected favourite, and the chance to be creative and draw a map dotted with bears and other hazards went down very well.
At £9.99 from Amazon, there’s a huge amount to do. We have spent hours working through it and still haven’t finished, quite apart from the colouring she’s left for ‘later’.
I’d definitely add this to my hand luggage list for preschoolers too. Easy to pack, lots to do, good for filling the occasional five or 10 minutes as well as a longer stretch, and the faint possibility I could read my own book during marathon colouring sessions.
Disclosure: We received this for review as part of Parragon’s book buddies scheme. All opinions and dodgy pig drawings are our own. Also contains an affiliate link (may go towards subsidising art lessons)
All images copyright MummyTravels