## Wednesday, August 17, 2016

### FlipStir Puzzle (Schoolhouse Review)

Recently, Emily and I had the chance to try out a fun and unique type of puzzle, the FlipStir created by Enlivenze LLC.  We received the FlipStir Statue of Liberty Puzzle to try, but there are several more variations: Rainbow Pencils, Tyrannosaurus Rex, and Solar System. The Statue of Liberty puzzle is a Level 2 puzzle because the picture itself is harder to solve and the edges of the pieces are wavy rather than straight.

How do you play with FlipStir? The directions are simple. Shake. Stir. Solve. That’s it! Well, the solving part is not terrible simple, but that’s where the fun is! A FlipStir is a 10 piece puzzle. Each piece is a semicircle and the pieces stack to create a picture. The catch is—the pieces are inside a plastic canister and the only way to manipulate them is with the attached stir rod. There are two skills needed to solve the puzzle—figuring out the order of the 10 pieces and actually moving them around inside the canister.

It wasn’t difficult to figure out the order of the pieces. Sometimes we had to put one in place before we could tell for sure if it was a match, but that part of the process wasn’t difficult. We found it a bit harder to figure out how to manipulate the puzzle pieces with the stick and Emily declared it “frustrating.”  She did enjoy it, though, and it took her a while to complete the process. It took me 15-20 minutes or so to put the puzzle together, although one of Emily’s friends picked it up and assembled it in 5 minutes! If we had more than one FlipStir puzzle, it would be fun to have races to see who could finish first.

The FlipStir puzzle is great for taking in the car or carrying in a purse because there are no pieces to lose. It’s a great tool for practicing fine motor and perceptual skills as well as for developing patience! Other crew members tried out some of the other FlipStir puzzles, so be sure to read about their experiences on the Schoolhouse Review Crew Blog.

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