Wall Murals for Boys

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There is a brilliant book for bunyips called “Where the Wild Things Are”. It is familiar to many, especially since a movie adaptation was released a few years ago. One of the most amazing things about the original book, is right near the beginning. The main character is sent to his bedroom for misbehaviour, and we soon see the walls dissolve to reveal trees and a vast ocean. He proceeds to sail across it on his boat (previously his bed) to have many adventures as King of the ‘wild things’.

Wall Murals for Adventure Seekers

The awesome wall murals available at Bunyip Toys bring back memories of that incredible ability kids have of imagining their way out of anywhere. The full wall and half wall murals are so impressive in size that they make a big impact on the decor and make escapist daydreaming easy. Have a look at Avast Me Hearties Wall Mural as a great example of one that will bring a million stories to the minds of little bunyips who are lucky enough to have this to decorate their wall. There are also huge planets and absorbing jungles available, large enough to spur on enormous dreams of their own.

Wall Murals for Animal Lovers

Ever popular dinosaurs, along with elephants and horses are among the choices for animal lovers who are ready to spruce up their bedrooms. There are also good animal themed choices for nurseries, where the smallest bunyips will start to learn about the animals they share this world with. Noah’s Ark and various farmyard scenes are popular choices for this application. Within the animal range, there are lively choices, good for rooms where a lot of playing will be done, as well as quiet stills, better for rooms mostly devoted to nursing or sleeping. An example of a quiet mood mural is Baby Elephant.

Wall Murals for Sports Fans

Those who like to go all day long might be interested in sports bikes on their walls too. Bike Tricks and other similar murals will be a favourite with teens, who don’t like to take much downtime from their hobbies, and love a space at home that reflects their interests.

No matter what your bunyip is interested in, Bunyip Toys will have a wall mural to suit their wildest dreams. Have a look through the store today!

Simple Science Experiments to do at Home

diggold-a1__08201_largeIt’s the time of year that staying in can be very appealing… that is until boredom sets in. Some experts claim letting the bunyips get bored is good for their creativity, and there is something to be said for that. But there is a fine line between being creative and getting into mischief. A good way to find a balance between the two is to set them up with some organised mischief. I’m talking science experiments.

Long before bunyips learn that “science is hard” or “science is boring”, they all go through a stage of discovery where science is, well, awesome. Let this be the winter they find a love of science, by letting them make something to eat, something explode, and something to gross everyone else out.

Edible Experiment: Melt and Mix Rocky Road

So, there might be an ulterior motive for having them try this one, but nevertheless, they will love to melt and stir the sweet-smelling chocolate between zapping it in the microwave. Let them guess, judge and measure the other ingredients, and experiment with different tastes, like white chocolate, or nuts. Probably not one you want to try first thing in the morning, or too late at night, but a very good idea just about any other time – and one they will likely come back to again and again.

Explosions: Vinegar Volcano

Everyone’s favourite from primary school, and easy enough to achieve at home too. It is up to you whether you make it a week long project, involving paper mache or clay crafting of the volcano itself, but the most exciting part for little bunyip scientists is by far the actual eruption. No fail, no flames, this explosion might take some wiping up, but you won’t be able to wipe the smiles off their faces when this one goes off

Ewww-Factor: Make Fake Snot

Because, why not? This is a clean, entertaining and educational way to be utterly disgusting, and will be the most wonderful thing ever to a certain variety of bunyip. (You will know if yours is one of these or not.) It will take some supervision, assistance, and a drop of food colouring wouldn’t go astray either. Not for the weak of stomach.

Science is a brilliant way to get bunyips thinking about the world, and how things in their surroundings act and react. They are never too young to hypothesise and make predictions. There are lots of experiments you can do with ingredients you will already have on hand and endless inspiration on the world wide web. Some of our favourites are here. Bunyip Toys also has a collection of great science tools and kits to get your little scientist thinking cause and effect this winter.

Update your Sylvanian Family home

Sylvanian_Families_-_5220_-_Classic_Furniture_Set_largeMany children of the eighties can remember the distinctive “Sylvanian Faaamilies” jingle that rang out from our suburban television sets (which had at the most four channels and no remote controls). We recall fondly the adorable little people-like forest animals, who made their quaint homes with tiny furniture and even tinier accessories. Those children are now well old enough to be parents, and might be lucky enough to still have their Sylvanian Family collection to share with their little bunyips.

Why do we love them so?

Sylvanian Families, first made in 1985, were based on a romantic Japanese idea of how creatures in the forests of the United Kingdom might live, if they needed the things humans need. The gorgeous toys make the most of children’s all-important first loves, family and animals, and so have stood the test of time very well. Because of their enduring popularity, new items and accessories have been developed to expand the range. As well as this, some of the classic sets collectors have long found appealing have returned to production.

How cute can it get?

The pieces belong to an earlier time. What makes up a Sylvanian village is essentially a doll house idea, and the appeal is in their simplicity. These critters live with wooden furniture and scarcely any electricity. One look at the “awww”-inducing Classic Furniture Set reveals a refrigerator we might have seen in our great grandmother’s house, and you will have to explain to little bunyips what that other thing is. (Hint for the younger parents: it’s a telephone.)

If you are keen to finish off your kitchen, have a look at the Kitchen Stove, Sink and Counter Set. It comes with little trays that slide in the oven and teeny vegetables that go on the trays. It is the epitome of cute, and will entertain bunyips, with their bright imaginations and penchant for story-telling, for hours. If you really want to send them into goo and gaa territory, give them a Baby High Chair to pop their smallest Sylvanian Family member into; because if there is anything cuter than tiny forest creature furniture, it is tiny baby forest creature furniture!

Take a peek into the forest!

There’s a lot more Sylvanian Families sweetness in our store, so take a minute to look around and find the next perfect component for your collection.

Art and Imagination

triple-easel__86499_largeWith the school holidays coming up, it’s the perfect time to put a bit of planning into some activities to enjoy with your bunyips. Creating beautiful things with art materials is a valuable use of time. It helps engage their senses and develops fine motor skills, as well as an appreciation for their own creative powers.

There is no limit to the ways a love of art and craft can be encouraged in the home. Some kids will like a step-by-step process; others will want to wing it. Most of them will do both at times. There is no right way when it comes to art. That goes for adults too. You don’t need to be “good at it” to have an incredible time with your kids in the world of colour and imagination. Let’s take a quick look at just a few artsy ideas that will excite your bunyips. Hang on to your berets!

Paint Fireworks

For those bunyips who like blowing bubbles into their milk, this awesome fireworks painting idea will be terrific. It’s a great one to experiment with colours, use a variety of materials, and an excellent excuse to break out the glitter.

Collage Faces

Scissors, glue, and that stack of magazines in the corner are all the bunyips need to make a truly unique and probably hilarious work of art. Art Face can be achieved by children of all ages, and the link even has stencils you can print out if you have no prowess with a pen yourself.

Footprint Trucks

Combining collage, painting and a healthy level of toe-tickling mess can get you a fleet of trucks to grace your walls. These footprint trucks will be the proud, personalised creation of your bunyips, and a colourful way to engage their creativity.

Finding Supplies

Bunyip Toys stocks a vast range of art and crafting supplies that will spark kids’ imaginations on sight.

An easel is a sound investment for budding bunyips who are setting up their home art space. We also have heaps of paper, in many colours, as well as black and white and an abundance of crayons, markers and paint. Take a few minutes to pick up some more ideas in our craft store (under MORE+ on our menu), and get your bunyips ready to create some joy!

Check Out Our YouTube Channel

playmobilMany little bunyips have discovered the joys of watching their favourite toys on YouTube. Now, at long last, Bunyip Toys has joined in the fun and we are excited to announce our very own YouTube channel! We have had a lot of fun creating the stop-motion adventures of Journalist Joanna and Cameraman Carl, just two of our favourite Playmobil buddies. If you get a few minutes in front of the screen with your kids, have a look at what we’ve been up to!

Why YouTube?

YouTube has proven to be a great way for us to share the adventures we have captured. Hopefully this can be another avenue we use to share our love of quality playthings, and get some feedback from our awesome bunyip community. Feel free to subscribe to our channel and leave a comment, so you will never miss a new episode. If you like, you could send us ideas about which sets you would like to see showcased and what could happen to Journalist Joanna and Cameraman Carl next. They are up for just about anything!

Why Playmobil is a Good Match for Video

As you can see from the wild adventures of our intrepid heroes, Playmobil is the perfect play system for pretend play and making up stories. Using some of the playsets available in our store, we set our imaginations free, and have come up with several quite involved plots so far. The videos are a great way to see what some of the possibilities are with the different sets. Also, we get a chance to show off the special play features that are hard to demonstrate in plain photos. For example, in our Alpine Adventure, you get to see how the Alpine Crossroads set has real water flowing through it, adding a special realistic dimension to the pretend play!

Ready to Join In the Fun?

At the end of each video you can find out which sets we used, so can easily find new favourites to add to your wish list or collection. We hope you enjoying watching our channel and have fun making your own stories at home too. Whether or not you capture the stories on camera, Playmobil toys are among the best for inspiring story-telling and pretend play.

Take Control Over Screen Time

girl-1283082_640We live in interesting times, when “screen time” is a household term, understood to mean the moments of every day we, and our children, spend in front of the television, computer and handheld devices such as iPhones, being informed, engaged and entertained in a wide variety of ways. Without screen time, our kids might not be able to do their homework, chat with grandma in another state, or keep up with the cartoon all their friends are talking about in the playground. But, like everything, too much of a good thing can be incredibly damaging, and though it may cause tears and tantrums, screen time is something, as parents, we need to keep a very close eye on.

How Much is Too Much?

Generally speaking, for children under the age of three, the less screen time they experience, the better chance they have of forming accurate impressions of the real world around them. Experts suggest children under two are best off with no screen time at all. If it seems like a better fit for your family that the very young do have some time in front of tv or with a tablet, it is prudent to choose the content they are exposed to very carefully, and watch or play with them, also providing personal interaction as they navigate the on-screen reality. Although some parents think setting their children up with an educational app is a good way to help them develop, they are mistaken. During the critical years of zero to three, the only effective learning young children are wired to do is through person to person contact.

What Exactly is the Problem?

Some of the most important learning young children do, including developing the ability to read facial expressions and tone of voice, as well as navigate socila situations, is greatly impeded by too much time spent in front of a screen. The most troubling aspect is that development that does not happen in the critical period often doesn’t happen at all. School teachers are witnessing more and more children who have started to rely on screen at a very young age, and as they grow up they are not equipped to form friendships and participate effectively in social (public) situations. Those children fall into a pattern of screen overuse, as they find solace in the realm where they are comfortable, and without drastic intervention never reach their full potential.

So, No Screen Time at All?

In case it sounds like a horror story created to scare parents into never having any time off from entertaining their youngsters, keep in mind children over three can get some benefit and enjoyment from moderate amounts of device use. Carefully selected games or programmes for short (around one or two hours per day maximum) amounts of time can give everyone a great break without jeopardising their overall development.

Trucks And Building – Construction Fun

MND2758_-_Big_Rig_Building_Set“Brrrrrrmmmm!! Brrrrrrrrmmmm! Beep beep!”

We don’t all like living next to a construction site, but there is something pretty fantastic about hearing the one in your living room in full swing. It is a true testament to how intelligent and observant children are, that they can have experienced such a place only in snippets, and from the periphery, and yet know exactly what to do when presented with toy versions of said place. That is why Bunyip Toys is as delighted as a digger in the dust to present the new Melissa and Doug Big Rig Building Set. This set allows little bunyips to transport and construct whatever they dream up- driver’s license and hardhat not required.

Like others in the Melissa and Doug wooden vehicle range, the Big Rig is solid and smooth. While supervision is always advised for the very small, the toy itself is sturdy and safe and perfectly shaped for curious little hands to manipulate. When all pieces are accounted for, this particular set is so big, as well, that it lends itself to either an epic creation by one imaginative bunyip builder, or a brilliant collaborative experience by several bunyip masterminds.

There is a total of 22 pieces to the Big Rig, which includes the two-piece tractor-trailer and set of tools (wrench, hammer, screwdriver), along with wooden nails, bolts, screws and boards that can (and will!) be taken apart and put back together a million different ways. This is a toy that will not get old fast, as growing bunyips will come back to it to try out new ideas as many seasons of their lives pass. The Big Rig’s mobility, by way of smooth rolling wheels, add to its charm and make it a fun toy for early toddlers, right through to primary school aged bunyips.

The Big Rig aids in the development of eye-hand coordination and manual dexterity. Small fingers are strengthened as they work to join and disconnect play pieces, and mathematical concepts are explored as pieces are measured against each other, and chosen for different positions according to their various properties. But the bunyips busy building in your living room probably aren’t going to be interested in all that diligent parent-speak. They have serious work to be getting on with. Better not get in their way! “Beep Beep!”