You can't imagine how excited I was when I discovered Neat-Oh's LEGO® City Fire ZipBin® Large Toy Box Playmat.
Legos + a large playmat + easy storage + FIRE AND FIREFIGHTERS = one happy boy!
We received the ZipBin trucker for Hot Wheels from my mom last year and have been toting our cars around in it ever since. Now that my son is obsessed with Legos, I find them everywhere! I cringe every time I hear him dump out the entire container onto the floor.
The LEGO® City Fire ZipBin® Large Toy Box Playmat arrived the other day and we were surprised at how compact it could be. It folds up easily, but when you do pull it out and set it up it seems really durable, large, and well made.
When my son saw the box he stopped what he was doing (watching a TV show I think?) and said, "I want to play with that right now! Let's go to my room."
We grabbed the playmat and dumped out his Lego bins and started playing.
Did any of you read the Play on Words article about the Best Duplo Lego Sets to Build Speech and Language? It was a great one and as we were playing with this playmat and our Legos this afternoon, I thought about some of the recommendations and thought several of them applied to this product as well.
Reasons we liked this product and a few ways we think it helps build speech and language:
1. The playmat has a specific theme, but it can be used in a variety of ways. Although the outside of the box has firemen, the playmat has grassy space, roads, water, a helicopter pad, and a distant city. The playmat doesn't cause play to be too stifled or structured in one specific way. It could be used for creating a city, building a hospital with easy access to a helicopter pad, making a gas station and tourist spot by the beach, etc. The specific features can help get the creating going, but they don't hinder the creativity.
2.The theme (although not overly invasive) is one that promotes conversation. A fireman is typically helping someone, so there needs to be communication between various people while kids are playing so that they can solve any problems.
3. The playmat is large, which makes it possible for more than one child to play on it. Although the smaller playmats can easily be shared, this larger playmat provides for a lot of space when kids are playing together and minimizes conflict over space. My daughter and son were able to both drive cars on the mat and build at the same time peacefully... at least until my daughter started stealing her brothers toys. :)
4. The ZipBin® Playmat promotes positive interactions between kids and parents when it is time to clean up! All you really have to do is move all of the Legos onto the playmat (in our case they were already there because we had been creating on the mat) and then you just zip up the sides and throw in any stragglers and you are done cleaning!
I don't think I have ever seen a three year old clean up this fast.
He even practiced zipping and unzipping and cleaning up the Legos during his quiet time later in the afternoon.
5. The box is durable and comes with a lid and velcro fasteners to make sure the lid stays put. The zippers are also easy to use and the surface can wipe clean. There are also handles on the sides of the box for fingers to easily hold the ZipBin® while carrying it around.
The ZipBin® went up and down our stairs several times today and it was so easy to handle. If it was completely full then my son needed help carrying it, but otherwise he could do it on his own.
5. The large ZipBin® is narrow enough to fit onto shelves and in cupboards but can still hold a lot of stuff. Originally I had two shelves with three smaller Lego containers taking up a lot of space.
Now all of our Legos (except maybe one larger construction set piece) can all fit in this ZipBin®... which leaves me with a whole empty shelf to fill with more toys :) Yay! The bin is 16.5 X 12.8 X 10 inches and the mat is 35 X 31.5 inches.
Can you tell we are ZipBin® fans by this rave review? I am already thinking about which bin I want to get next... since I now have an empty shelf and we will need more Legos soon, right? Especially with Christmas fast approaching.
Do you want your very own LEGO® City Fire ZipBin® Playmat?
Head on over to our Giveaway page and enter to win. Not only could you win the LEGO® City Fire ZipBin® Playmat, but you could also look through the other ZipBin® products and choose a different one if fire and firemen aren't your child's thing.
So... have you entered the giveaway yet? Go now!
You can also learn more about ZipBins by Neat-Oh over at their Facebook page... so go stop by and "Like" their page if you are interested in their products.
Have you tried one of these ZipBins out before? If you're a ZipBin® fan, which one is your favorite?
Disclaimer: We want to thank our friends over at Neat-Oh!® for letting us review their fabulous product. We did receive a LEGO® City Fire ZipBin® Playmat for free from Neat-Oh!® to allow us to do this review, but we were not paid for this post and the opinions shared in this post are exactly how we feel. Please keep in mind that the opinions expressed in this post are mine and are related to my family. You might have a different opinion. Remember to check out our Neat-Oh!® ZipBin® Playmat Giveaway that is going on right now. The deadline to enter is Thursday, December 1st at 11:59pm.