We often find that while travelling in the car, our children get bored and I often run out of questions to ask or find myself repeating the same timetables again. So I am always on a look out for products that offer a simple and quick way to challenge their little brain in an effort to relieve boredom and keep them awake!
Recently, I came across Brain Factor which they have a range of question cards or ‘fans’ that are suitable from ages 3 to 6. Currently, they have four fans on the market. The fans for ages 3-4, 4-5 and 5-6 are more picture based with questions featuring number and pattern games, letter and blended sound recognition, shapes, mixed up stories, rhyming words and more. The 6-7 fan is more text based, though it still has fun graphics. The questions are divided into five main subject areas – wonderful words, nifty numbers, vivid vocabulary, our world and general knowledge.
For the ages 5-6 fan, children join Olly the Kangaroo to explore the world and learn through play. The fan contains over 150 questions which include:
- More advanced number and pattern games
- Coin and simple telling the time puzzles
- Recognising blended sounds
- Mixed up stories and rhyming words
- General knowledge
Ms C is in year 1 and she is able to recognise some of the words but she requires our help to read some of the questions to her. The handheld fans come with cute illustrations and plenty of challenging questions for her. The fan comes in a good shape to hold and contains challenging questions that suit her age. The answer cards lie behind the question cards so is very useful to check the answers.
For the ages 6-7 fan, children have to work through the questions, race against the clock and score points for each correct answer. The fan features over 250 questions which are divided into five subject areas:
- Wonderful words
- Nifty numbers
- Vivid vocabulary
- Our world
- General knowledge
There are also single topic cards on subjects such as sport; transport; castles; odd one out, and true and false.
Mr K is in Year 2 and he is able to play it on his own. Only occasionally does he need us to explain the words or challenging questions to him. He enjoys the questions but does find some of them are quite hard for him.
The fan cards are very well made with beautiful and clear illustrations. The questions are very engaging and tests the brain. It is also easy to hold and comes with a store box that keeps the fan cards neatly tidied away. One issue we did have though was with the ages 6-7 fan, where the clip holder came off and the fans went flying everywhere. It was easily fixed but it did happen again. I believe this is just a one-off with our sample and it is not a big deal as long as we’re careful with it.
Overall, I find that Brain Factor fans are appropriate for their aged and also benefit the children. It is a great tool to challenge children and help them to learn something new each time. They are priced at RRP £6.99 which is excellent value for money. In the USA, the fans are known as Brain Quest and have been on sale for around 20 years and they go up to age 13. In fact, the fans are on sale in 25 countries. In the UK, they are available to buy from Amazon, Blackwell’s and Waterstones book stores.
Disclosure: We have received the samples to do an honest review. Contains Amazon affiliate links.