Japanese Hiragana Blocks

27 Jul

One of the most popular and favorite toys in our house is a set of wooden blocks we got from Pottery Barn Kids ($49). Babies love to hold and throw them, toddlers love to stack and crash them, and now my preschooler is building more complex structures and recognizing the letters painted on them. I would say they were a great investment!

The only thing that might make them better is if instead of the ABC’s, it had hiragana on them! Well, yesterday I just stumbled upon a set of Japanese Hiragana Blocks ($41)! They are handcrafted in Michigan by Uncle Goose and sold by hazel. They look to be high quality and I love that the hiragana is embossed instead of painted.  What do you think?

6 Responses to “Japanese Hiragana Blocks”

  1. moochida July 27, 2011 at 10:07 AM #

    We had the same thought so asked my mom (who has a Kumon center in NJ) to get this for us and send it over (http://www.amazon.co.jp/%E3%81%8F%E3%82%82%E3%82%93%E5%87%BA%E7%89%88-%E3%81%B2%E3%82%89%E3%81%8C%E3%81%AA%E3%81%95%E3%81%84%E3%81%93%E3%82%8D%E3%81%A4%E3%81%BF%E3%81%8D/dp/B000QW7QVI/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1311776921&sr=8-2) because shipping via Amazon Japan is simply ridiculous. Our daughter loves the same Uncle Goose blocks for regular A-Z alphabets, and we thought that this would be great for Japanese because 1) each block has the whole column of letters (あ-い-う-え-お) and a picture that uses one of the letters, and 2) the letters repeat so you can form words more easily.

    …But she’s not playing with it as much as we thought she would! The reason may have something to do with her age/phase rather than the toy itself – because it took us a while to get it in our hands, we got it right around the time she was starting to lose interest in playing with blocks, and moving onto more pretend plays, board games, and art.

    I do love the blocks and I hope our next kid will get more out of them…

    • moochida July 27, 2011 at 10:08 AM #

      ooops – sorry the link is breaking your layout… feel free to turn it into html link

    • Hiragana Mama July 27, 2011 at 3:31 PM #

      I know! If shipping from Amazon Japan wasn’t sooo expensive, we’d all be in good shape 🙂 You guys are thinking of having another, or are you expecting? Either way, congrats!

  2. 紗織 July 28, 2011 at 3:05 PM #

    $41 seems an expensive price to pay. Though, I don’t know the average price for blocks, as the ABC’s blocks were even more expensive at pottery barn!

    On Amazon though, it seems these blocks are only listed at $20: http://www.amazon.com/Japanese-Hiragana-Blocks-Uncle-Goose/dp/B002O0AHVQ

    • Hiragana Mama July 28, 2011 at 6:27 PM #

      Good find! I can’t believe the price difference!

      We got our pottery barn blocks at a discount before it was a floor model… (good tip for people who like but can’t afford Pottery Barn stuff- get the floor models!) :)$20 is definitely more reasonable. Thanks!

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