Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Swingy Thing

Swingy Thing

Fall 2015 Toys
Ages: 6 & Up
Manufacturer: Fat Brain Toys
Price: $14.95

The aptly-named "Swingy Thing" from Fat Brain Toys is the perfect toy for the child who needs to keep hands busy while concentrating on deeper things. This simple toy has six brightly-colored pieces (three bars at the center and three U-shaped pieces on the outside) lined up and nested to swing loosely around a metal rod. By shifting it forward and back or side-to-side the player sets various combinations of the pieces in motion. If simply spinning the pieces for the fun of it isn't enough, an included poster lists and names every possible combination of swinging pieces so the player can keep shooting for something new. The developers state that it's good for "Stress relief, building motor skills, improving concentration, hand-eye coordination, making people smile." It may or may not meet all those lofty goals, but the toy is fiddly and fun and surprisingly enticing.

Emily Crawford   ©2015 Parents' Choice
Emily holds a BSE in electrical engineering and computer science from Duke University and a Master's in computer engineering from Georgia Tech. She is a homeschooling parent and lives with her husband, three children, five cats, and thousands of LEGOs in Blacksburg, Virginia.

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