Last week we were kindly sent an Alien Robots Engineering Makerspace Kit from the Thames & Kosmos (T&K) new 2019 range in exchange for an honest review. Up until then I had not been aware of the brand but after some research found that they are highly regarded in the specialty toy and education market and offer more than 80 science kits in thirteen different categories starting from age 3 all the way to adult, so there is literally something for everyone.
Saffi (8) was desperate to try this out as you could make a dragon monster and she is loving anything dragon related at the moment, so we set up our camera to record a time-lapse of the build too which you can see on our YouTube channel.
On opening the box we looked at the manual first. It gave us a picture of the pieces and then a checklist to make sure all 138 pieces were there – which they were, you also need 2xAA batteries. With any build we do, we layout all of our pieces on a tray so that we can find our pieces as easily as possible. We then looked at the 10 possible Alien Robots we could build and Saffi couldn’t decide as there were a few she liked the look of and in the end she opted for her original choice.
Saffi struggled a little bit with getting pieces to fit. The small connection pieces were quite stiff so a lot of adult guidance was needed to make sure that they were securely in place. The other struggle we had was the instructions themselves which were quite complex to understand. There were visual pictures but the arrows were a little misleading and not very clear so a couple of times we had to undo and rebuild but there was a tool included which made this very easy. I would say that if these parts were broken down a little bit more this would be a lot easier to understand for the younger end of the recommended 8+ age bracket. It is definitely something that is to not be rushed.
With lots of encouragement Saffi finished the dragon robot and was very happy to have achieved this. She already has planned what she is building next.
We were both very excited to see what it could do. The motor that is built on has forward and reverse options.
We put it down on the floor and off it went, we didn’t expect it to go so fast.
Overall, Saffi enjoyed building it and was very proud of herself for not giving up. As tricky as it was to begin with we found ways of overcoming these which is all part of the learning. It really encouraged her to slow down and really look at what she was doing.
The Engineering Makerspace ranges from vehicles to robots. Build and learn for fun with this range that explores the physics of the force, motion, energy, levers and more so children can learn as they play. Suitable from 8+. Sets include Kinetic Machines, Geared up Gadgets, Off Road Rovers and Alien Robots.
To find out more about the Thames & Kosmos range you can visit them at the following website Thames & Kosmos UK and social media channels Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.