Screen-Free Toy Ideas for Summer Break: It's a Pirate's Life for My Boys with the Antsy Pants Pirate Ship ~ Dallas Mom Blog and Fort Worth Mom Blogger: Trendy Mom Reviews
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Saturday, May 11, 2019

Screen-Free Toy Ideas for Summer Break: It's a Pirate's Life for My Boys with the Antsy Pants Pirate Ship

The end of the school year is just a couple of weeks away. My children love television and electronics, but we limit their screen time to 2 hours per week (total) because we want them to play outside, read books, visit libraries and museums, use their imaginations, work on craft projects, and more.  Of course, this sounds good in theory, but I've found that it takes advanced planning to create a summer routine that doesn't result in them asking 100x a day to play on an iPad. In today's post, I'll tell you about a fantastic toy that helps them to have fun by using their creativity and imaginations  - it's the Antsy Pants Pirate Ship!

Let's start with the concept. Antsy Pants sells many kits that use poles, connectors, and covers to create fun play tent structures such as pirate ships, construction trucks, firetrucks, club houses, ice cream trucks, and more. Each kit contains poles, connectors, and covers that are child-friendly for them to follow instructions to build a set.  The supplies are versatile and allow them to also create their own designs. For instance, my children reconfigured the poles and connectors from their pirate ship set and threw a sheet over the structure. They called it a club house.  The concept is really cool because the set is modular and allows them to follow the instructions or create their own designs. There is a combinatorial explosion in the number of possibilities!

For instance, our 8-year old built the pirate ship shown below while his younger brother excitedly handed him pieces as he requested them.  

They enter through the back of the ship.

The photo below shows that this pirate ship is quite large!  We use it inside, but it's also great for our backyard too.

The front has two portholes that they love. My youngest son's baby shark is peaking out of the ship!  You'll also notice a steering wheel for them to take turns as sailors steering the ship.

My youngest loves letting his baby shark come inside of the ship! However, my oldest keeps helping the shark to jump back into the water as shown in the photo below!  (I love the baby giggles from my youngest son when he laughs about his shark going back into the stormy seas.)

This Antsy Pants set has provided many hours of screen-free entertainment for our children where they have practiced their engineering skills while using their imaginations.  

Here are 10 highlights of how they've used their pirate ship set:
  1. Built the ship and reconfigured the poles, connectors, cover, and their own light blankets.
  2. Read books in their pirate ship.
  3. Talked like pirates in the pirate ship.
  4. Sang the Baby Shark song in their pirate ship.
  5. Played a shark game where one person hides in the ship and the other is a shark that tries to tag them if they stick an arm out of the ship.
  6. Drove the ship around our backyard (in the "rough seas").
  7. Played hide-and-seek in the backyard with the ship.
  8. Had a sleepover on a deserted island (in our playroom).
  9. Ate pirate snacks in their ship. 
  10. Passed secret messages in the pirate ship.
This toy has created wonderful childhood memories for my children. We love that it's a simple concept with unlimited possibilities!  While my children love their pirate ship, Antsy Pants offers a variety of play tents in different themes such as fire trucks, ice cream trucks, fairy tale castles, school buses, trains, circus tents, and more. Visit Antsy Pants for memorable play sets to create happy childhood memories this summer!

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