There are several toys expected to be very popular this holiday season. Among them are Squinkies, Sing-A-Ma-Jigs, HEXBUG, Pop on Pals, Moon Dough and more. Over the next few weeks I'll try to fill you in on my personal reviews of these products to try to help you decide if they are worth spending your $$$!
First up is Moon Dough.
Targeted to kids ages 2-4, Moon Dough is a new molding compound unlike any you have used before. It is soft and marshmallow-like – – – it actually reminds of the “astronaut ice cream” (dehydrated ice cream) I used to love as a kid. Moon Dough never dries out, so you can use it over and over again. It is also hypo-allergenic and wheat-free.
My thoughts: I received the Moon Dough Magic Barnyard and my nephew and I did have fun with it. The Barnyard offers the options of either making “factory type” animals by putting Moon Dough into the top of the barn, turning the crank, and seeing animals pop out the bottom. OR you can press moon dough into the fence and hay bale molds to make figures by hand.
Pros: Unlike other types of dough/clay for kids, Moon Dough doesn't stick to surfaces. Small pieces can be vacuumed up. Once figures are formed, they are very sturdy, so little ones can play with their animals or other creations without squishing them. Since Moon Dough never dries out, there is no fear of having it ruined if you forget to put it away after playtime.
Cons: Little flakes of Moon Dough tend to break off and get everywhere. It's true that they are easy to sweep/vacuum up, but until that time, be prepared for it to look like a mess. The crank on the barn was a bit tricky to use. I had a bit of a hard time figuring it out myself and it was a little too difficult for my 2 1/2 year old nephew to manage. While perfect for use with molds and forms, I found Moon Dough too difficult to make free-form designs by hand.
UPDATE: After using it a couple more times, the little flakes drive me crazy. They really get all over the place and stick to clothing and other items with static electricity. I'm sorry to say that I don't think we'll be playing with it any more.