Have We Lost Our Marbles? Not Yet!
For as long as I can remember, there was this couple that my parents had always been friends with. And by my saying “as long as I can remember”, I mean that the wife was the person who drove my mom to the hospital when she was in labor with me. So…a long time.
One of my earliest memories of Bruce (the husband) was of him making these wooden dancing toys. They’re kind of hard to describe – it’s a mannequin on a stick that dances when you tap it against a wooden platform. Anyhow, my brother and I always enjoyed visiting them and pulling out those ‘dolls’. Later he began painting them to match the features of the person that he was going to give them to. Such a great personalized gift.
He also dabbled in making other wooden toys, and one that we have had for a long time was a marble tower that rang a bell at the end. That’s it in the photo above, painted red and full of marbles. It resides at my mother’s house and gets pulled out by the girls every time we visit, usually on the first day. Such a simple toy, but it brings them so much enjoyment. But it has one flaw. Well, not so much a flaw but a limitation – it only has one track. And I have two daughters. I’m sure you can see where this is going.
But what if I told you that I found a product that not only solved this dilemma, it also upgraded the experience and made a fair racing game out of it? That’s where Techno Gears Marble Mania Dual Speedway 2.0 came into play. Just look at all the parts and pieces this thing comes with! This is no simply toy!
Once the pieces were sorted out and the instructions consulted, construction began. Both of our daughters (ages 10 & 11) were able to assemble this on their own (with only a few consultations with dad). By the end of the first evening, we were a little over half done.
Unlike some of the other construction sets we’ve encountered, these pieces snapped together (and more importantly came apart) very easily thanks to their unique design.
And as I mentioned earlier, the instructions are well-drawn and easy to comprehend for anyone over 8 years of age. In fact, there are no written instructions, only photos!
On the second night construction was finally complete. This particular set is quite large once assembled, and in this case bigger really is better! At the base is an electronic ‘announcer’ that counts down to the start of the race, and two spring-loaded canisters launch your marble to the top at the press of a button.
But if a picture is worth 1,000 words, then this quick video of the speedway in action should be priceless.
Techno Gears Marble Mania Dual Speedway 2.0 is a product of The Learning Journey International, maker of a number of great educational toys, all sorted by age range. Pick up a speedway or one of their other marble tracks on Amazon before they sell out for the holidays!
As for the marble track that our friend made? It’ll stay at “Grammy’s” while we play with the speedway here.
Do you use toys and games to make learning fun?
27 thoughts on “Have We Lost Our Marbles? Not Yet!”
That looks like fun. If I could have kids I’d probably get this for them.
I just have to tell you that I was scrolling through and saw this post…my 8 year old daughter was behind me and saw it…”Quick, Stop! Go back! I want that!” …It’s on her Christmas list now! lol
That is a lot of parts! But it looks like your kids had lots of fun putting it together.
Thanks for sharing…looks like more fun. I will definately will add on my lke for my little one.
how cute! my son would love this
That looks like a world of fun. My nephews would have a blast playing with it. I can see the two of them going for hours at a time.
Love your daughter’s face in the pic with all the pieces! My youngest would love this!
We love marbles and anything that goes fast! This is te perfect game/toy for my 13 year old son.
This looks like so much fun. I really enjoyed playing with marbles when I was a kid.
Oh how fun! I think I’d have the same expression on my face after opening the box seeing all those bags!! That’s part of the fun, though! Thanks for sharing!
Wow that’s a ridiculous number of pieces. I’d be pulling my hair out before it was put together. But it looks like your girls had no trouble! My niece is still too young for it otherwise I bet it would be on her wishlist too.
My girls would totally love this! We have a lot of the neighborhood kids come over to play games. This would be a big hit with them!
Now that is seriously cool! My son would have spent hours with this when he was younger.
My husband had one of these when he was a little kid and I completely forgot that we wanted to look into seeing if they still made these. Looks like not only do they still make them, but they are better than ever! That is really elaborate! I bet that this would keep my son busy for hours.
I loved this!!! I went over your post 3 times reading and checking the video, I fell in love with the marble track.. they always fascinated me even when I was a little girl and the new high tech ones..WOW.. soo super cool.. I have to have one for ME!!! I’m sure the kids want to play, too.. I may not let them.. this is way too cool. Thanks for an awesome review Scott and I’m off to get me one… soo excited.
I use to have a set of these at a day care I worked at. They were the most loved toy.
Very cool, I would have loved this with my sister. I’m sure assembling it is half the fun – that thing looks like a massive puzzle to put together!
This toy looks amazing, but your story is even better. You have a way with words #HUGSSSS
That is awesome! My son would love it. He loves building things and the racing part is a bonus!
My son is grown now, but he would have loved this so much. He loved building toys, toys with action – and this combines both.
That looks like so much fun! I also love that it’s built up so it doesn’t actually take up that much space!
This looks like a blast! I could see my son spending hours and hours playing with this fun set.
My SON would LOVE this!!! Looks like so much fun. Do you think a 6 year old would be able to put this together?
This is so cool! It reminds me of the Mouse Trap game, which I loved! This is a winner, and I’m going to get this. Let the fun begin!
looks like a LOT of fun! 😀
This is really cool. I have one daughter in particular who is obsessed with legos and puzzles. I just found a Christmas gift for her. Wow! In our case she would be putting it together completely on her own since she likes to do these types of projects herself. Awesome! 😀
Oh my gosh, that looks like SO much fun! Not only for my little boy, but I think mommy and daddy might hijack it and play with it while he’s asleep! 🙂