Today, I’ve got another great product to share with you that we’ve tested with the kids, and I’m quite excited because I think it’s one of my favourite things we’ve tested yet. We love spending time outdoors as a family, and frequently take trips to our local nature reserves or the woods, so the 5-in-1 Outdoor Measure Mate from Learning Resources is right up our street. Longer time readers of this blog may remember the Explorer Kit I made Oskar for his 6th birthday, and the Measure Mate perfectly compliments this.
Disclosure: We received a 5-in-1 Outdoor Measure Mate free of charge, in return for an honest review. All opinions are our own, and we genuinely think this is a great product.
So, what’s in the box? There’s a trundle wheel, a measuring stick with a set of callipers, and handle. Take note of the rectangular shaped hole in the handle – we will come back to this later! The box also includes a set of stickers, to customise your Measure Mate, and a handy little mesh bag to store all the pieces when dissasembled.
It’s really easy to slot the handle, measuring stick and wheel together:
Of course, the first thing the boys wanted to do was apply the stickers:
And then we were good to go! We had been planning a trip to the woods at our local nature reserve to test out the Measure Mate, but due to all of us recovering from heavy colds and still feeling a bit weak in the knees, we decided to postpone the trip to the woods and test it out in our large communal back garden instead.
The highlight for both boys was definitely the trundle wheel. Each click is 1 metre, so they used it to measure the length or our garden. The bolt needed a little bit of adjusting – if it’s too tight, the wheel won’t turn, and if you’ve been wheeling it along for a while it does eventually become too loose and the wheel won’t click anymore – but it’s easily adjustable by hand, no tools needed!
They also had a little bit of fun using both the trundle wheel and the measuring stick to figure out how long daddy was! The trundle wheel also has a fun pattern on it, designed to leave bird footprints in wet sand or mud, which would be fun to use e.g. for a scavenger hunt. After the hot weather we had over Easter though, the ground was bone dry so we’ll have to test this out after the next rainfall.
Next, we decided to do some measuring with the measuring stick and callipers. In the photo above, Oskar is demonstrating how easy it is to pull the Measure Mate apart again. And remember the hole in the handle I mentioned at the beginning? Well, you can slot the measuring stick in to this to create a level surface to measure on, which starts at zero. The measuring stick has centimetres on one side, and inches on the other. We scoured the garden for various sticks to measure and compare.
Then we ditched the handle again, and used just the measuring stick and callipers to measure and compare the thickness of tree branches. You can also use the other side of the callipers (pointing away from the branch in the picture below) to e.g. measure the size of hollows inside tree trunks, but search as we might we could not find any tree trunks with hollows in our garden.
The measuring stick – which includes a built in spirit level – can also be used on its own, without the callipers. And there’s a little leaflet that comes with the Measure Mate, which has lots of ideas to get you started on the different ways to use the Measure Mate further (the leaflet is multi-lingual, including instructions in English, Spanish, French, German, Dutch, and Italian). And apparently, it can even be used as a pretend guitar! LOL.
And when you’re done with your Measure Mate for the day, all the pieces tidy away neatly and easily it to the mesh bag.
We had so much fun with this, and can’t wait to try it out on our next trip to the woods when everyone is feeling better. For anyone who loves spending time outdoors, the Measure Mate definitely adds another level to exploring nature with your kids! The 5-in-1 Outdoor Measure Mate is available via the Learning Resources website.