Thames & Kosmos’ creative young heroine, Pepper Mint, is back with two new, story-based adventure kits designed to inspire children to embrace the world of STEM in a fun and an engaging way. Pepper Mint: The Magnificent Mars Expedition (RRP £25), sees Pepper head off to space on a mission to the Red Planet for out-of-this-world scientific discoveries. As the child works their way through Pepper’s story, they embark on their own scientific journey. Firstly, using the colourfully printed wooden panels to construct models of Pepper’s rocket ship experiment-and-play station and Mars rover, and then to conduct experiments. From floating astronauts to magnetic slime, Pepper Mint accompanies the user through every step.
Recently my 8 year old daughter had the opportunity to review and explore ‘The Magnificent Mars Expedition’ STEM based learning toy. The item is created through the ‘Pepper Mint’ range and is designed to encourage young girls into Science, Technology, Math and Engineering. The idea behind the toy is a rocket and space rover that is built using the instructions provided. These are then used to carry out a range of science experiments. The instructions provided were clear and concise but my daughter did require the support of her Dad (who was very happy to help!). The instructions provide details of how to construct the items and also how to carry out the experiments. There were parts that needed an adult to put together as they were a little too fiddly and delicate for my daughter; such as putting on the wheels to the space vehicle.
The toy very much promotes the science and engineering aspects of the STEM approach and allowed my daughter to make some fantastic links in her learning throughout the whole process.
The instructions show how to carry out a variety of activities such as making little Pepper Mint fly (my daughters personal favourite!) and also making magnetic slime in a test tube. The activities required a little adult supervision when it came to measuring the water levels needed for the slime, to ensure the quantities were correct for the task to be successful but we also feel that leaning by trial and error is key to positive and effective learning. These experiments allowed for this.
The item is fantastic, a little delicate in parts and as I stated previously can be a little fiddly but overall a wonderful learning based toy. I would happily receive and purchase this product as it is a great resource, making learning fun and hands on. Although the item is designed to encourage the involvement of girls into the field it is also a wonderful toy for any boy out there too. I would highly recommend this product to anyone.
My name is Charlotte, myself and my husband Colin have been married for almost 13 years. We have two beautiful children, Florence who is 9 and Maximus who is 6. As a family we love nothing more than walking our gorgeous dog, Willow, getting messy and creative and snuggling up to watch a multitude of films together!