1-2-3 Ready to Grow Activity Center Review (Kolcraft)

1-2-3 Ready to Grow Activity Center
PRICE CHECK
   
EDITOR'S REVIEW
OVERALL EDITOR'S RATING:
What It Is

Learning and playtime with baby is as easy as 1, 2, 3 thanks to the 1-2-3 Ready to Grow Activity Center. It can be used in three modes to accommodate babies from 4 months to 36 months. And its Play & Learn Piano accessory offers three levels of play in English and Spanish. 

For the youngest babies, it's a seated activity center with a brightly colored fabric seat that rotates 360 degrees. That's great for getting little legs moving and gives them access to all the toys around the activity center. The toys include a spinning owl with textured wings, a clicking mirror flower with crinkly petals, a caterpillar with roller ball center, a hanging sun and butterfly on the toy arch, and two toy loops for hanging additional toys. There's also an electronic Play & Learn Piano with three modes of play: Lights and Sounds, Music and Poems, and Find and Touch. In the first mode, babies will hear phrases about colors, shapes, numbers, and more. In the second mode, babies can make their own music with the piano keys or hear different stories and music when they press the buttons in the book. And the last mode asks kids to identify animals by their sounds.

For babies 12 months and up, switch the activity center to an activity table by removing the seat and attaching the shape puzzle tray in its place. (The tray can be stored on the side of the activity center until needed.) The tray includes four magnetic shapes that kids can place in the shaped cut-outs of the butterfly on the tray. You'll also need to change the position of the Play & Learn Piano. In this configuration, toddlers and preschoolers can stand and play with all of the activities. 

And for ages 24 months and up, remove the tray and turn it over to reveal a magnetic art easel. There are paper templates in the back of the instruction booklet for shape-matching fun, or kids can place the magnets on the board however they want and use the magnets to hold up coloring pages. The magnets can be stored inside the easel when playtime is over.

Why Is It Useful?

Parents will like that this offers three stages of play, becoming a toy that will grow with a child. And changing between the modes is pretty easy. If you have a preschooler and a baby, there are elements of this that each child can use: the baby in the activity center and the preschooler with the art easel. For babies and toddlers, there's probably more play because of the interactive features, and these all promote the development of fine motor skills, as well as offer tactile, visual, and auditory stimulation.

Who It’s For

This activity center can be used with babies from 4 months to 36 months, when converted into its three different modes. 

What To Be Aware Of

Overall, it took us 20 minutes to assemble this, but 15 minutes of that time was screwing in the screws, which were very hard to do. 

Three AA batteries are required but not included.

The Play & Learn Piano has two levels of volume.

AT A GLANCE:
  • Is It Useful?

  • Is It Worth It?

  • Assembly & Instructions

    Easy


    3 AA batteries required