Smithsonian Kids Interactive Animal Cubes

Promoted Skills

Product Description

The Interactive Animal Cubes include five cubes with real life photos from the Smithsonian. Each cube is a different category related to farm animals, sea animals, pets, wild animals and insects in bright colors of orange, red, blue, yellow and green. Children have the opportunity to learn about 30 different animals and hear their sounds. The Interactive Animal Cubes can be switched from exploratory play to game mode which will “quiz” the child on the different cubes animals and sounds. 

Cognitive 4

Skills

  • Auditory and problem solving skills are used when matching sounds of the cubes and placing the cube into the sensor during play.
  • Cause and effect relationships are built as children place a cube in the sensor and hear a response.
  • Color recognition and identification can be targeted during play. 

Play Ideas

  • A caregiver can play a memory game with the child by placing the cubes out in front of the child. Have him look at the cubes and then close his eyes. Take one away. Have the child open his eyes and determine which cube category is missing. This works on memory and recall skills and helps identify the cube categories.
  • A caregiver and child can name the different animals and bugs on the cubes without using the sensor to become familiar and comfortable with all of the cubes.  As an added challenge, a child and caregiver can compete to be the first person to find the right cube to place in the sensor when playing in game mode.
  • The child can use the cubes as dice. He can choose a color and then roll the cube to see which animal will be placed in the sensor to hear the sound. 

Adaptation Ideas

  • For children who are easily over-stimulated, reduce the number of cubes. A caregiver can gradually increase the number of cubes as a child’s ability and frustration levels permit.
  • Only play the Interactive Animal Cubes on exploratory mode until the child is ready to incorporate all five of the cubes and be quizzed on game mode. 

Sensory 3

Skills

  • The Interactive Animal Cubes provide verbal and sound feedback which heightens the awareness and attentiveness of the child using the toy.
  • The child can gain an understanding of spatial relationships when placing the cubes in different places. For example, under the table or on top of the chair.
  • Child can learn to visually distinguish between the different categories of animals as well as auditorily distinguish the animals through exploratory play and game mode. 

Play Ideas

  • A caregiver can be the voice of the game mode and the child can use the cubes to point to find the right answer without turning on the toy. This can assist children who may become overstimulated during electronic game play.
  • A caregiver and child can try to act out the different animals on the cubes adding a kinesthetic element to play. 

Adaptation Ideas

  • Take the batteries out of the unit for children who find the sounds to be over-stimulating.
  • Play with the Interactive Animal Cubes without the sensor cube until the child becomes familiar with the different colors and animals.
  • Cover the speaker with tape to soften the sound. Constant adult supervision is needed with this adaptation. 

Physical 3

Skills

  • Hand-eye coordination is used as children place cubes in the sensor accordingly. 
  • The child can utilize fine motor skills such as grasp and release and finger manipulation while placing a cube into the sensor. 
  • The child can practice organization skills and choose specific cubes which helps develop motor planning skills. 

Play Ideas

  • Have the child hold a cube in each hand and tap them together. This works on hand grasp as well as playing at midline.
  • Place the cubes on one side of the child and have him reach over to retrieve them for play.  Crossing midline can be targeted.
  • The child can stack the cubes up during play to practice balance and steadiness. 

Adaptation Ideas

  • A caregiver can pre-place the cubes in the sensor and the child can press down on the cube to activate.
  • Use the cubes without using the sensor.
  • A caregiver can remove the batteries from the sensor cube while the child practices placing the cubes into the sensor. This will hone the skills of placing the cubes without the frustration of getting the answer wrong during game mode. 

Developmental Processes Promoted

Additional Details

Approximate Price:
$24.99
Age Range:
1+
Directions:
Simple
Levels of Play:
Three Levels
Storability:
Easy
Washability:
Surface Wipe

AblePlay Rating

Smithsonian Kids Interactive Animal Cubes

Developmental Skill Rating (1-5)
Physical 3
Sensory 3
Communicative 4
Cognitive 4
Social/Emotional 3

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