Review: My First Matching Game by Ravensburger

I gave in. I caved for my little girl. Back in January we bought Mini Mix & Match cards by Ravensburger to start Little Miss on memory games. The cards work fine for her, but some of the animal photos on the cards seemed a bit too detailed.

Photo of 12 pillow cards from the My First Matching Game by Ravensburger. Click to enlarge.This weekend I bought another, recently released, memory game, My First Matching Game, also by Ravensburger. It consists of machine washable cloth cards which are slightly padded, like pillows. There are 12 pairs—7 farm animals and 5 farm scenes (a tractor, house, boy with a dog, girl with a cat, and a farmer with a pitchfork).

The game instructions (not that you really need them) are provided in English, Spanish and French.

Each picture is simple and easy to identify. The similarity between the chicken and rooster cards sometimes give Miss pause, but that’s an opportunity to point out the chicken is a mama with baby chicks.

A good grasping size, the cards are two-and-three-quarter-inch square. More importantly, their pillowy nature lifts the edges off a flat surface, making them easy to pick up.

The game box lists an age rating of 30 months while the manufacturer’s web site states 24 to 36 months, but at 21 months Little Miss has no trouble matching pictures. She turns up a card, then we talk about the name of the animal she sees and what sound it makes. Coaching is required to have her turn cards face down after unsuccessful matches—she prefers to hold one in her hand and hunt for its twin at the same time. Some might say she’s breaking the game rules, but I call it being efficient.

I bought My First Matching Game at an educational toy store, but it can be found at KidsSurplus.com and other online vendors. Be careful using Froogle because it contains some incorrect matches for a game of the same name (about African-American historical figures) not made by Ravensburger.

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