Friday, 16 August 2013

Review: Fisher Price Kick & Play Piano Gym

When Fisher Price contacted me and offered to send a Discover 'n Grow Kick & Play Piano Gym for Molly in return for a review on my blog, I was delighted to accept.  I've bought many Fisher Price toys for Lizzie over the years and I've always been pleased with the quality and durability of their products.

Molly is just starting to reach the stage where she can enjoy the Kick and Play piano now that she is a few weeks old, although this toy is suitable for use from birth.

The Piano offers three play "modes", the first being Lay & Play, where the baby is placed on their back looking at the toy bar overhead, and their feet within kicking distance of the piano at the end.  The second option is Tummy Time, where the toy bar is lowered to ground level and the baby is placed on their front, with the piano in kicking distance and the toy bar within easy reach.  Thirdly there is the Sit & Play option, in which the piano is raised and the baby is able to sit with their feet underneath it, using their hands to activate the keys.

The toy is really easy to assemble once everything is out of the box, and the toy bar can be removed when not in use to make storage easier.  The four toys hanging from the toy bar can be arranged to suit, allowing you to change the order they are in from time to time and keep things interesting for your baby.  There's also a mirror angled from the toy bar so your baby can gaze at their own reflection whilst playing.  

The piano itself has large keys that are easily pressed by the gentlest of baby kicks.  There's also two lights that flash when the keys are kicked, offering additional visual stimulation for your baby.  Batteries are included with the toy and can be replaced - three "AA" batteries rather than the huge chunky batteries that cost a fortune!

The play mat attaches securely into place and is soft and comfortable for the baby to lie on.  It has a bright design on it too, offering something else for your baby to look at.  It's easily removed and is machine washable - I haven't needed to wash mine (yet!) but I think it's inevitable that it will be in the wash before long!!

Now that Molly is starting to focus on objects, she'll happily lie on the play mat and watch the toys hanging from toy bar above.  The toys are visually appealing and stimulating in bright colours, and Molly bats away at them for quite some time, whilst kicking actively at the piano at the base of the play mat.  Kicking the piano starts music and plays individual notes, and the various settings allow you to adjust the volume and and also to choose between "long play" or "short play", where pressing the buttons results in a song being played, or an individual note or a short melody.

Obviously with Molly being only 7 weeks old, I can't ask her for her opinion on this toy, and I can't say for sure how much she is aware of the "cause and effect" of her actions at this stage.  I don't really think she knows yet that the music plays in response to her frantic kicking, or that the toys swing when she reaches out and hits them.  Whilst we like to think that she is dancing to the music, I suspect that in reality she's just lying there watching the pretty colours, blissfully unaware that her arms and legs waving about are even hers!  

I can say for sure though that she is more than content to spend time on the play mat, absorbing the stimulation offered around her from the toy.  I'm sure that as she continues to grow and develop (as babies do so quickly!!) she'll be able to engage even more with this toy and get real enjoyment from it.  Fisher Price toys are built to last and the quality of this toy is apparent; I'm sure Molly will be enjoying it for a long time to come.

Thank you Fisher Price for sending this to Molly!