View Full Version : Learning Tower owners...
1) I possibly buy one for $70 -- is this a good price? Used maybe 1 yr or so.
2) Ok, so I get how a child can love this and benefit, be involved w/ cooking etc etc... but is it really worth the value? ($200 usually).
3) If I buy this, then I'll def. have to cut out other stuff out that I wanted to buy for her bday: like puzzles, books, art supplies, musical instruments (that in my mind clearly show positive effects).
Really trying to figure out if this is worth the purchase.
Would love any input (Positive or Neg) about this product.
Thanks for your help.
08-18-2011, 01:06 AM
$70 is a great used price.
But if it will set you back so that you can't spend on books, puzzles, etc, I wouldn't do it.
Yeah, it's great...at least at first. My girls loved it for the first several weeks that we had it. Until the novelty wore off. They're almost 3 now and they don't have the patience to be in it for very long to "help" in the kitchen. Not to mention they fight while they're in it...
I don't regret the purchase though (and I bought mine off CL for $135 NIB with playhouse kit - which we have yet to use). The LT has actually been put away for a couple of months now since we had to stage our home for sale. Am hoping that interest is renewed once I break it out again. But - at this age they'd also be just fine on a stepstool and it is kind of a pain having the drag the LT around since it's heavy.
So, in your shoes I'd skip.
08-18-2011, 02:19 AM
$70 is a great price. I bought ours when DD1 was about 20 months old. She is almost 8 now. Between her and DD2, it has been used just about every day. So for us, even at full price, it has been worth every penny.
08-18-2011, 02:31 AM
$70 is a great price. DH made ours and the materials alone cost close to $70. I have been baking more with DD and she is always dancing around and so I like the stability aspect. And then DS and she can both fit in there which is nice.
It does get really positive reviews here and it is a cool way to involve kids in the kitchen. BUT it is big and I know some people don't end up using it a ton. We use ours about once a week. So it's a YMMV thing.
08-18-2011, 07:18 AM
My FIL also made one for DD2. She has used it daily for about 9 months and loves to "help" in the kitchen or to do art of playdoh at counter level. I would say $70 is a great price and you could potentially recoup the initial investment by reselling it in a few years. Are there other friends/family who may be able to purchase the puzzles, art, and music supplies? It is big and heavy though, so you need to have the room for it.
08-18-2011, 08:52 AM
Agree that $70 is a good price. We got ours when DD1 turned 2. She's 4 now and has used it every day...sometimes to help cook, sometimes to help with dishes, sometimes to eat a snack. It lives on the side of our kitchen island. DD2 is 20mos and I anticipate her starting to use it soon. For us it was worth every penny.
08-18-2011, 08:54 AM
I agree that $70 is a great price! I bought it when my son was 18 months old, and he's used it every single day since. He's now 5. My younger son likes to stand in it for snack time. It still has a lot of life left in it! I prefer them to stand in that than sit on the stools we have.
08-18-2011, 08:56 AM
That's a very good price. We love ours and it was worth the money. Heavy and a big footprint, but well worth it's bulkiness. For me, yes, I would skip the puzzles and books (assuming you can find deals on those throughout the year) and go with the LT. If for some reason you aren't using it and change your mind after a few months, reselling it for the same amount should be easy. I do think it depends on your lifestyle and kitchen layout. For me, I have a small kitchen but a perfect size little nook where the LT lives. And I'm a SAHM and starting to homeschool. So we have lots of kitchen time at home and plenty of opportunities to use it.
08-18-2011, 09:06 AM
We had one briefly - I bought it for $20 at a tag sale, so I obviously wasn't that committed to begin with, but I was psyched to try it. We found it okay - our 2 y.o. DD liked to use it. We have photos of her using it to help make cookies. It didn't get daily use or anything. While it's more stable than standing on a chair or step-stool, I don't find it way better than those things if you have reasonably stable chairs. We moved and our current kitchen layout had no place at all to store the LT. It would have had to stay in the dining room and get moved to the kitchen. That didn't work. It got moved to the basement and I eventually sold it on Craigslist (for $60 - it wasn't in new condition, had some scratches on the top where it made contact with the cabinets). I haven't missed it or mourned for it.
I think it's a cool idea if you have a REALLY roomy kitchen or the perfect nook to place it in, and might be particularly useful if you like to do elaborate cooking projects and spend a lot of time in the kitchen and want your DC to be able to accompany you, assist you, or just play at counter height in the same room with you. I could also see it being nice for moms of twins or two small ones close in age because you could put two kids in it. But for us in our house with our lifestyle, it didn't seem to really make sense.
08-18-2011, 09:11 AM
I could also see it being nice for moms of twins or two small ones close in age because you could put two kids in it.
Definitely! I am not entirely sure how my experience would have differed if I had used the LT for just one child. I know that there is NO WAY in the world I would let my kids stand on chairs or stools in our kitchen. No way. Because there is too much twin on twin violence and I have no doubt something horrible would happen. So I agree for twins (or siblings) it may be exponentially more worthwhile.
I have a blog about the LT and all the things we used it for, and a friend of mine saw it a year or so ago. She came up to me recently and thanked me for "inspiring the single best purchase of her life"! She has two daughters, a 3 year old and a 6 year old and they adore the Learning Tower. She said her realtor saw it and said, "what is that, can we get that out" and she said, "no way, no how" that is one thing that is going to stay in the kitchen regardless. So I guess it depends. If you are on the fence, I might not encourage a full-price purchase, but for a bargain I think it is worth a try. It might be life-changing, you never can tell.
We had one and it was really great for DD. I sold it when I realized DS was a total monkey and his climbing all over it would be dangerous. It takes up a lot of room in the kitchen. Once I get rid of it, I bought a Kik Step stool--the kind you most often see in libraries that roll but settle down to the floor with a weight on it. I like it MUCH better than the Learning Tower.
08-18-2011, 09:20 AM
We have a LT and I think it's just ok. I found it at a consignment shop for $30 since it was definitely in used condition. There was no way I was going to spend over $100 on something like that.
We do use it nearly every day, but only for a few minutes. I'm sure we could easily live without it. I consider it an eyesore because it has to stay out and visible in the kitchen since it's huge.
I guess I'm indifferent about it and in your situation where it would cut into the budget for other things I would probably pass on it.
08-18-2011, 09:21 AM
i agree with Melaine... i think for us the LT was worth the money (over puzzles, toys, etc). i got the LT new for $133 and i still think it was well-worth what I paid. DS started using it at 15months and it has been SO useful. it's pretty much the only way to keep him contained and entertained in the kitchen while i do stuff (load diswhasher, cook, etc). He is always begging to see what we are doing in the kitchen and the LT allows him to do that safely without me having to hold him. For that, it was invaluable to us...there wasn't anything I had that could take its place. Sometimes my DS asks to eat his lunch or dinner standing in the LT. I just put a mat under it and it's fine.
If we had paid twice retail it still would have been worth every penny for us. Having the learning tower makes it possible for me to actually get things done in the kitchen. DD particularly loves cooking so she uses it multiple times a day.
08-18-2011, 09:59 AM
$70 is a great price...I bought one used for $130. My DD is 12 months and we can't wait for her to be able to help grandma out in the kitchen.
08-18-2011, 10:05 AM
I agree, great price. But only worth it in place of those other items you've been wanting IF you do/want to engage with your DC in that way. We have one and use it from time-to-time but honestly, during dinner time, I'm just in a rush to get things done. I don't have time to let DD help me unless it's something really simple and easy. I don't regret the purchase (I paid 20% off of retail) but if I only had $70 to spend, I would probably run to Borders right now and buy some books/puzzles/games... WAIT, I did that last night!! :P
08-18-2011, 10:45 AM
We got ours in like new condition for $80. DDs use it every single day. Like PP's DS, sometimes they ask to eat standing in it! An LT and a sinkfull of bubbles and you've got an excellent rainy day activity (albeit a wet one!) They "help" me cook while in it. My DH who was openly skeptical admits it was an awesome purchase. I don't know if I would buy it in place of books etc. I think it depends on how much you think you'll use it WITH your DC, because that's where the value lies I think. For us, I'd buy the LT.
08-18-2011, 10:51 AM
the key determining factor IMO is the amount of time you have to use it with your DC's ...
my mom keeps my DD during the day. grandma prepares meals for the family and does a lot of entertaining and cooking. DD does and will spend lots and lots of time in the kitchen.
if it were just me with my work schedule the LT probably wouldn't be as valuable because I simply don't have time in the evening
AMAZING RESPONSES everyone!!! Thanks :)
Now... I gotta think! Ouch, that hurts. :)
We are only having one DC, but I do agree if we re-sell, maybe we'd get some of the $$ back....but then you never know in this Economy..
Thanks again everyone.
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