One thing that I realized when we started putting together “Baby Week” was there are SO many products for babies. I guess I should have realized it seeing as how there are megastores devoted to our wee little ones! I was on the look-out for products that could ‘grow’ with my baby. I was so excited to receive the First Toddle for review, as this seemed like it would fit the bill. The First Toddle stands out as a 5-in-1 system that converts to grow with your child from infant to toddler, using all the same pieces, just in various configurations. At the time of this review, my son is 8 months old.
I love the little parallel bars that he can pull himself up with and take assisted steps. As a physical therapist, this reminds me of equipment we use in the gym to help retrain adults to walk. This is similarly a great product for special needs to assist them with this important developmental milestone, too. The bars are surprisingly sturdy, even though they are a PVC-type material (Note, this product is PVC-free. It is made out of a custom-molded child-safe plastic called ABS). In the parallel bar set-up, it adjusts to three different heights (picture above is at the lowest setting). He’s already “furniture walking” so it’s just a matter of time until he takes those first independent steps!
We’ve also been switching it around into the play-tent, too. My 3.5 year old has fun with this conversion as well! Switching the set from parallel bars to play tent took one minute, tops. All I had to do was raise the bars and put the mesh over them, hooking it around each corner. The only problem I had was in the initial assembly–I was putting the wrong side of the blue pipe into the yellow joints. It definitely only goes in one way, and it’s not immediately apparent which side is correct! It took me a long moment to figure out why it wasn’t working. I think if the company somehow color-coded the ends of the pipes with a colored line or dot that would make the assembly more fool-proof and it would have gone much more smoothly.
When I was looking around on the website, I was amazed to see photos of bigger kids playing on the First Toddle, too. I emailed them and they said it was lab-tested to support up to 130 pounds! Once I told my 3.5 year old, she had a blast showing off her ‘gymnastics’ moves that she learned at school.
The footprint of the Little Todder is not much larger than what a traditional “Baby Gym” would take up. Since it’s relatively quick to assemble/disassemble you don’t need to make the permanent space to keep it out, either. I also like that it comes with a variety of accessories grow with my son (we received blue, but they also have pink if you prefer a girls set). My son will have a great time using the basketball and soccer goal conversions as he gets older (and my 3.5 year old tot can enjoy them now!) It would be a great item to have from birth, as it would eliminate the need to get a “Baby Gym” and other toys since it has so many additional configurations and items to grow with your child. I did a quick search on Babies R Us and most of the gyms run between $50-$60 dollars, and then you don’t even use them past 4-6 months of age! Being able to use this as a Baby Gym and more through toddlerhood definitely makes this item worth the money (and it’ll be space-saving, too!). Since the bigger kids can have fun with it, too, that makes it all the more worth the money.
Items included in the First Toddle include:
- Toddle Walk Structure
- Play Mat
- Activity Table
- Toddle Tend and Crawl-Thru
- Min Basketball Backboard, Hoop and Net
- Mini Soccer/Hockey Goal
- Sports Ball Set (Blue or Pink)
- Mini Hockey Set
- Large Soccer/Hockey Net
- Soft Play Toys
- Carry-All Box
- First Toddle Child Development Guide
- Recommended for age 3 months to 3+ years
- Safety tested and certified: No Lead, No Paint, No PVC, No PBA, No Small Parts
- Also, no bleach or additives used in the cloth material and netting
First Toddle has won numerous awards, including Creative Child Magazine’s 2009 Top Toy of the Year Award and was an iParenting Media Award Winner. Their website also indicates that it is a great device for special needs children and is a cost-effective supplement to other pediatric therapies. The First Toddle retails for $129.95 and can be purchased here.
DISCOUNT: First Toddle is kindly offering That’s IT Mommy readers a 20% discount now through 11:59 PM PST on 12/1/10. Just enter the code THATSIT20 at checkout and your 20% discount off of anything in the cart will be applied. Thank you, First Toddle!
That’s IT Mommy friend, Heather
* WE DID NOT RECEIVE MONETARY COMPENSATION FOR THIS REVIEW. THAT’S IT MOMMY RECEIVED THE FIRST TODDLE SYSTEM FREE OF CHARGE TO FACILITATE THIS REVIEW. THIS WILL IN NO WAY SWAY OUR OPINION OF THE PRODUCT OR SERVICE. THE REVIEW IS IN OUR OWN WORDS AND IS OUR OPINION. YOUR RESULTS AND OPINIONS MAY DIFFER.