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

Kids First Amusement Park Engineer

Kids First Amusement Park Engineer

Fall 2015 Toys
Ages: 3 - 5 yrs.
Manufacturer: Thames & Kosmos
Price: $64.95

The Omega family, mom and dad, siblings, Ty and Karlie, Huxley, the building robot, and Remus, the science bear, are all ready for a day at the amusement park. But, upon arriving at the park they're told that none of the rides are working and that the engineers who can fix them, are not there. In the Kids First Amusement Park Engineer set by Thames and Kosmos, children follow the Omega family in an attractively illustrated story with assembly instructions built directly into it. And, the overall theme is quickly apparent: physics is at work everywhere.

As children build a range of rides, they learn and practice a variety of basic physics skills and vocabulary. They learn about slopes and gravity when they build angled roller coaster tracks to increase speed and distance; they learn about pendulums building the pirate ship ride, central axes when building the merry-go-round, and friction when the lack of water causes the log flume to stop. There are twenty ride designs and instructions included in the storybook; however, children can use the pieces to build whatever they want. This provides excellent long-term play and learning values as well as hours of imaginative and creative play. Some constructions may require adult assistance, but even the instructions suggest allowing children to have as much independence as possible.

The set features colorful, large, and easy-to-handle pieces that even preschool hands can easily and successfully manipulate. And, all the pieces as well as the story/instruction booklet fit neatly into a sturdy plastic bin for easy storage and/or travel.

Sharon Heuscher   ©2015 Parents' Choice
Sharon holds B.A.s in English Literature and Ancient Studies as well as a B.S. in Psychology. She is currently a masters-level trainee in Clinical Psychology specializing in neurodegenerative diseases. For the past thirteen years, Sharon has focused primarily on raising, educating, and nurturing her five children who range in age from three to thirteen.

Share This