Animal Puzzles: Alligator, Frog, & Shark

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Here we have a group of wooden puzzles: an alligator, a frog, a shark, oh my! All of these items can be assembled laying flat, but can also stand freely. Additionally, because the way the pieces of these wooden animal puzzles interlock, they can be picked up and held in the upright position without falling apart. Probably the most difficult to assemble is the alligator, which is why we recommend this puzzle pack for children ages 5 and up. This is not easy for me to admit, but after sanding he alligator puzzle is the one that took me the longest to put back together because two of the pieces were flipped wrong-side up.The smallest pieces are about an inch long, so just be aware there is a chance of choking if your children try to eat their wooden puzzles. Otherwise these wooden puzzles, unpainted and unfinished, are completely natural and environmentally friendly. We know this set would probably appeal to boys more than girls, which is why we are hoping to get another wooden puzzle set up here geared more towards things girls would like too. Looking to buy? Click here.

Materials: alligator and shark are unfinished poplar; the frog is cypress

Dimensions: Alligator H=3″ L=11″ W=1/2″, Frog H=4″ L=7″ W=1/2″, Shark H=3 1/2″ L=8 1/2″ W=1/2″

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Marble Race

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Here is an experimental prototype we, and by we I mostly mean my husband, have been developing. I helped in that when he hit a wall design wise I threw out completely useless ideas before he came up with the right answer. The man is risking his marbles with this four person wooden marble race, the assembly of which proved to be far more complicated than we had anticipated. Each column is a track for marbles to run down. The bowl at the base is the ultimate equalizer as the marbles battle in a melee for first place. The spout out the bottom spits each marble out one by one. This being the first attempt, our wooden marble race has proven to be a success. Now we are planning to perfect the design making the marbles run more smoothly and effectively. The races are really fun for all ages. Even our little boy has played, granted it was quite the task keeping him from trying to eat the marbles. This is likely because his father chose to race one of the new dark chocolate raspberry M&Ms and immediately ate it as soon as it spat out at the bottom. Baby sees all! But we did get a few successful runs with actual marbles out of him with a lot of help from his mommy. He liked the marble race well enough, but lost interest as soon as he saw a shoe he could try to eat. As for the two adults in the house, we have yet to lose our fascination.

Materials: poplar and plywood

Dimensions: H=24″ L=13″ W=13″