Thomas Solley

Thomas Solley

Industrial Design & Technology BA

Tomy Adventure Balloon

A toy for Tomy's Play to Learn range

In an age where 'screen time' is increasing the Adventure Balloon encourages children to get up and active whilst fulfilling their desire to discover the world. The Tomy Adventure Balloon is an interactive toy which aids cognitive development in infants aged 3 to 6 years for Tomy's Play to Learn range. The handheld hot air balloon toy projects an aerial view of a countryside landscape on the floor below using an integrated mini projector. Depending on which way the infant tilts the balloon the projection moves across the 'scene' and the infant can visit different 'attractions'. This toy concept aims to give the same sensation to the infant of being inside a hot air balloon looking down at the earth. The project focused upon Piaget's theory of child development by psychologist and influential researches of children's cognition, Jean Piaget. A key part of the project was the characterisation of the balloon to visually express the function of the toy through facial emotion whilst maintaining traits that are 'cute' to entice the infant to play. The outcome of the project was considered to be a unique vehicle 'hot air balloon' within a vastly saturated market sector and a toy, which enhances play.