I was asked to review two toys by the PR firm for Discovery Channel toys. They sent me the Double Globe Planetarium and the Digital Metal Detector (to be reviewed separately).
I have seen a few variations of toys that have some kind of light show around stars or planets and really liked the idea of getting one for my children. So I was quite happy to receive this.
The set has a base, two globes, one about planets and one about stars, a pointer and a CD covering everything on the maps and additional information about space.
As soon as we unpacked the toy the kids had the batteries in (four for the globe and two for the pointer) and headed off to find the first dark place they could find. It being the middle of the day, they all crammed into our little store cupboard (which is plenty crammed already) and I soon heard excited exclamations emanating.
I waited till later and we tried the toy again at night in their bedroom. It takes a bit of adjusting to get the image into focus, by moving round and working out the best distance to hold the base and globe from the surface the light show will be reflecting from. This is an example of what you can see and is from the kids bedroom ceiling:
The images are accompanied by a voice-over explaining what you are seeing. My boys did sit through the whole thing. I was relieved to find it particularly captured Gorgeous' attention and had him sitting quietly fascinated for a while.
I have to say the kids really liked the toy and have played with it quite a bit. They have used the pointer separately, mainly to point things out to the Baby and watch her try and catch the light.
The only thing that bothered me was that the globes felt a little flimsy. I have been quite strict about the children putting the toy back into the box it came in to keep it from getting damaged, as I suspect the temptation is there for my cheeky lot to play with them like a ball.
Other than this I like this toy, the CD that comes with it is interesting and very informative. The children haven't sat through the whole of it, but I think it would be useful for homework at some point.
A nice, educational toy, with lots to learn if your child is interested in space.