Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Fisher-Price Wooden Toys Early Bird Barista Set

Fisher-Price Wooden Toys Early Bird Barista Set

Spring 2016 Toys
Ages: 2 & Up
Manufacturer: Fisher-Price
Price: $30.00

The Early Bird Barista set includes two "to go" coffee cups with lids, a French press with plastic bead/beans, a milk carton and a sugar shaker. Its simple design is sturdy, well-made, and will withstand lots of use by little hands and even the occasional dirty, little fingers.

As soon as we placed the set on the classroom shelf, all 13 of the three and four year olds were ready to play. Wonderful language, interaction, sharing, cooperative play, role playing and creativity were all on the menu. New vocabulary included: barista, scoop, dollop, smoothie, blender, apron, and green tea. We heard from the little ones: "I'm putting a lot of sugar in mine to make it sweeter." "I want some cranberry juice." "I like bananas and blueberries in my smoothie." "Please." We added.

The sugar shaker quickly changed into a cinnamon, chocolate, or rainbow sprinkles shaker. The milk container also added cherries or whipped cream to each drink. The French press transformed into a tea pot and a juice container. Happily, and unexpectedly, the children washed in our water table. (Naturally, we'll take credit for teaching life skills.)

When the 6 and 7 year olds arrived, the drinks quickly became very fancy, and money entered the play. It was a teachable moment about basic money transactions, with various denominations and coins. They served each other and offered pastries with their coffee drinks. Waiters and waitresses wrote down orders, then served the food and drinks outside on their patio. Parents (and teachers) were invited to join them. Tips were expected so a tip jar was decorated and a sign made and added. Additional signs were made for various drinks "of the day." And no one became over-caffeinated.

Kathy Smith   ©2016 Parents' Choice
Kathy Smith has been leading preschool classes through playful learning for more than 25 years. Her tales of "Who is messier, 'Miss Kathy' or the children?" is a comedy act in the making. Family friendly, of course.

Share This