Toys have changed a lot since I was a kid, and I think a lot of those changes are for the better. There are a lot of retro toys making a come back, but the surge of STEM and STEAM toys brings educational toys to the forefront and some are extremely exciting. When I was little, I loved pink – and probably over did it. As an adult, I don’t think that every girl toy should be pink and glittery, and usually avoid those toys when I see them. But when I saw the Design and Drill by Educational Insights this summer – it caught my eye, and not because of the color. It was more what the toy included, encompassed and even the message it let’s girls (and boys) know.
Educational Insights sent me their Design and Drill Flower Power set to review. And when you first look at it, it does scream “girly!” and almost everything I try to avoid in toys. However, the bright pink wasn’t what caught my eye about the toys, and the fact they are available in white and blue and other shapes actually made me feel a bit better about the girly toy. I’ll say it again, the color wasn’t what made me want this toy as an adult, what did was tucked inside the case. The main flower case unfolds into a full flower, and inside are 60 bolts in different colors, 6 designer plates, a power drill and two bit heads. Yes! Finally – power tool toys for girls!
Every Design and Drill comes with it’s own book that shows you ideas of what you can create with your designer plates and bolts. But really, your child’s imagination can go free with this toy. As an adult with several power tools of my own, I appreciate that not only does the set come with two interchangeable bit heads (each bolt can accept either one), but it has a forward and reverse option like a real power drill will as well. It’s smaller in side, works with it’s own bolts but can easily teach your child how to use a power drill while they’re having fun.
You may notice that I keep saying that the Design and Drill can teach your child how to use the tools and they will love it, right? That’s because the color didn’t stop Gavin from wanting to play with it when his sister Ella was done! While the girly colors may not have been my first choice – the kids didn’t seem to care. It was more about putting the bolts where they wanted them, and matching them up to the plates and creating their own design. Gavin also found out that his own tow power drill fit with the bolts perfectly, but it didn’t have the same amount of power his sister’s new drill did!
There are so many things I love about the Design and Drill, including the availability of a power tool toy targeted towards little girls, but also the coordination it helps them gain. The first couple screws going in were a little harder, but once the kids learned how to use the power drill and the two directions you could put it in, they were able to create the design they wanted in no time. In the end, the color of the toys didn’t matter both kids loved playing with it. The bolts and designer plates are all large enough they are easy to find to put away, and when you’re done they can snap inside the case and be stored until the next time you play. I absolutely love a toy that encourages girls to break outside the typical rolls they’re assigned, and one that helps them learn to use tools at an early age rates highly in my book!