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The Old Schoolhouse Magazine
Let's Play School!

By Terry Workman (illustrator)

18 Ann Street
Norwalk, CT 06854

Let's Play School! is a kit that preschoolers can use to pretend that they are in school. The 12" by 12" container has a front cover that opens up in the middle. Inside you find a lot of classroom features. There are ten lessons that this kit covers: the classroom, the four seasons, at the market, around town, let's play, our amazing bodies, sequencing, counting, on the farm, and shapes and patterns. The flip chart has 22 pages. Also included are 6 animal magnets, 32 stickers, and 32 magnetic pattern blocks.

When you open up the kit, on the left-hand side is a moveable clock. You or the student can write in the time with the enclosed erasable marker in the blank spot underneath the clock. Then it has mini-clocks with empty faces and pictures like "bath time" and "play time," and the student can draw in the appropriate time on the clock face. On the right-hand side there are three wheels that the student can turn. One is for the day of the week, one is for the month, and one is for the date. In the middle there is a flip chart with different lessons. One has pictures of the four seasons. It also has questions that the teacher might ask: What do you wear in winter? At the end of the flip book is a magnetic panel. You can use the enclosed animal magnets to create a story.

My preschooler loved opening up the kit. Youngsters enjoy having something that is just for them. The Let's Play School! kit was a good way to start the beginning of our school time together. We could write in the time on the clock and maybe draw in when play time or lunch time would be. Then my daughter could dial in the day and date information, even though she couldn't read. She also liked having an erasable pen and enjoyed using that on the magnetic board. The kit opens and closes nicely and can easily be placed on a bookshelf.

I didn't find out until my child tried it that the pen was not meant to be used on the flip pages. There weren't any instructions about how or where to use the pen. With much effort the pen marks did come out. Although it states that this product is for ages 4 and up, I would use it more for a reading kindergartner or an older child who likes to play school.

Let's Play School! is a good kit for children who enjoy pretending to be the teacher. It includes many of the daily facets of a traditional classroom. Your younger children will enjoy having a school item that is just for them.

Product review by Maggi Beardsley, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, LLC, August 2008

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