Lovevery Persister Play Kit Review: Worth It vs Amazon Self Curating?

Wondering if the Lovevery Persister Play Kit for Months 55, 56, 57 worth it vs Amazon self curating? In this Lovevery review, I'll walk you through each item included in The Persister Play Kit from Lovevery, our personal experience with it after a year of use followed by how the items compare to Amazon Alternatives and other toy dupes (with links to shop those as well if self curating this Lovevery play kit!).

You can also use Lovevery discount code TCM to save on a new subscription!

WATCH THE PERSISTER PLAY KIT REVIEW ON YOUTUBE

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What's inside The Persister Play Kit from Lovevery? [+ Amazon Alternatives!]

Montessori Movable Alphabet Game

A wooden board, that holds two moveable plastic letters. In true montessori fashion, vowels are colored blue, and constants are red.

Beyond the moveable alphabet, this comes with cards and a dice to play a fun multiplayer game.

Dupes:

Montessori moveable alphabets and montessori language objects are not unique to Lovevery and you can find a ton here. We've had this one and this one.

However, none match the quality and scale Lovevery created AND they did it with a fun game. We've had the wooden one and it's super cheap/splintery and the foam one at the end of the day is still foam so it shows wear over time, but I prefer it to the wood one.

Montessori Language Objects

Small objects that match the word cards from the previously mentioned game.

Personal Experience:

My oldest has gone through periods where she's super interested in reading, and one's where she isn't. We received this game during a period she was mildly interested, and she liked it enough… then lost interest in all things reading.

Then one day, she became OBSESSED with it. Literally had us playing it a handful of times per day, every single day for weeks. She couldn't get enough of it and I enjoyed working with her on her letter sounds. I think she only lost interest in playing it because I got so bored after a while and she knew my heart wasn't in it anymore.

In fact, I think that's been one of my greatest struggles as a parent teaching my kid to read, getting bored with the activities – but I think I have a solution to that now that I'm stoked to share with you guys next month so be sure to hit that subscribe and notification bell if you're looking for better games and ideas to practice pre-literacy and literacy skills with your kids!

Anyway, I'd say this is a hit for sure. My kids use the objects in their magna tile play houses. The quality is unmatched, and the game – like any reading game – goes through it's phases of heavy use and not being touched.

Dupes:

Like the alphabet, montessori language objects are not unique to Lovevery and you can find a ton here.

The most similar one to Lovevery's is probably this one or this one, given the scale and materials.

You have to look careful (if you care) for the sets that feature true objects vs the shape with a picture printed/colored on like this or this.

For the DIY'ers or cash strapped, you can certainly borrow the premise of Lovevery's game and create your own cards and dice using whatever objects you have on hand and a moveable alphabet though.

Path Builder Marble Maze

A series of easy, medium, and challenging mazes with pieces you use to create a pathway to run the marble through.

Personal Experience:

This immediately reminded me of a marble run game my husband grew up with and I got really excited when I saw it that I actually spent more time than I'd like to admit playing with it! It's super fun for all ages too! As both my 2 and 4 (now 5) year old love it.

I think it's great too because siblings can work together on building the path and taking turns running the marble through. It's something they can deepen focus working on, learning trial and error, and keep the engaged in independent play for long periods. In fact, as I sit here writing this, my 2 year old is quietly working on one of the puzzles.

Dupes:

There's nothing exactly like Lovevery with the built in puzzle sheets increasing in difficulty AND working motor skills of turning the board to get the marble down, but you can find a few marble circuit puzzles featuring a similar concept.

This one comes with puzzle cards, and you pull a strip to “drop” the marbles which auto-run the path; and this one has a booklet of puzzles, with the board being elevated to auto run the balls.

Draw, Trace, & Erase Board

A carrying case for a board featuring a compartment for the twist-up crayon pen, a section for a series of double sided cards with various tracing activities, and a free form section you can place the moveable alphabet letters into to practice tracing.

It has a plastic top to hold all the lower stuff in place, and use as a writing surface that you can wipe clean with the included felt eraser.

Personal Experience:

My daughter liked this but it was never a love.

We've used dry-erase tracing activities from preschool workbooks with these plastic sleeves for a long time before getting this, so she liked how pretty the Lovevery one was, but the concept itself wasn't new to her.

She also got frustrated with the crayon and erasing; preferring her typical dry erase markers.

With all of that said, it's so sturdy, well made, and I love the carrying case to bring to grandparents or restaurants.

Dupes:

Honestly, nothing exactly like it but no shortage of options when it comes to erasable tracing activities for kids.

Like I mentioned, you can use a traditional preschool workbook like this and even maze books, ripping the sheets out and inserting them into these sleeves.

Alternatively, we've used this wipe clean workbook for years too.

Calming Circle + Breathing Activities

While this is technically two items – a mini book teaching breathing techniques using the calming circle – I'm lumping them together because the calming circle doesn't totally make sense to a 4 year old (in my experience) without the explanation.

Personal Experience:

The calming circle is great quality, and a nice manipulative/fidget toy for kids learning to do breathing activities.

However we never had much luck with it. Because my kids couldn't read when we got it, using this relied on me learning how to use it, modeling it, then hoping they would do it – which felt like too many steps to teaching calming techniques. Instead we already have our calming techniques I model during those times, and they naturally drop into with me that don't require use to pass back and forth an item. I guess you could say this item never made sense to me, and in turn my kids never cared for it (likely following my lead).

Dupes:

I'd say this wooden breathing board is most similar to Lovevery.

However it's not the dupe I would get. Instead, I was always taught to teach kids breathing techniques using this ball. It's a great fidget toy, comes in single, 2 packs, or 4 packs, meaning your kids could do it WITH you during high stress moments – instead of passing it back and forth.

Jilly & Jett Book

A book on working through challenging feelings using the Calming Circle.

Personal Experience:

I'd say this book was relatively neutral; my kids didn't LOVE it or dislike it. They never said this, but I suspect this fell a little flat for two reasons.

First: The “tension” point in this book is that they made sidewalk art, then the rain washed it away. I know that can be geographical if you live in an area without a lot of rain, but it's kind of a silly premise that by the age of 4 to 5 years old, you'd still be getting frustrated about sidewalk chalk disappearing… they probably should've done this at a playground, went to have a snack, and came back to another kid having drawn all over it, I feel like that frustration would've been far more relatable.

Second: With such an unrelatable tension point for 4 year olds, it's a little long. Charlie Learns Something New is just as long, but it's so relatable that kids my kids are hooked at “what happens next,” whereas this just loses their interest.

With that said, it definitely inspired them to play with the Calming Circle more than they would've.

Dupes:

Obviously no books truly compare to Lovevery's real people, and the new graphic add-ons they've been doing in the 4 year old play kits are so engaging and I love them for emphasizing feelings further and helping with reading comprehension.

So if you can pick up the original, I'd definitely get it. Otherwise I'd say the SPOT feelings book series are always a solid choice or this book was written by a child psychologist on frustration for kids and is a decent alternative.

Play Guide for Months 55, 56, 57

Basically a cheat sheet to your 4 year old!

Includes:
  • Expert tips
  • Developmental info
  • At home activities to do
  • Ways to play with the items

The Persister Play Kit Book Bundle

In case you missed it, Lovevery launched “book bundle” add ons for subscribers. For $18 you can add 2 books to your play kits; but they currently do not offer this for the 4 year old play kits.

How much does Lovevery's Persister Play Kit Cost?

Lovevery's Persister Play Kit costs $120, but they do offer prepaid bundle options for up to a 10% discount here or use Lovevery promo code TCM for an even bigger discount!

Is Lovevery Persister Play Kit Worth It?

If I were to skip a Lovevery play kit for 4 year olds, then this would be the one.

It's not that it's bad by any means – and if gifted it, I'd still call it a win – it's just that in my experience, only 2-3 items were true “hits” while the others were underwhelming; and as a whole it's easy enough to recreate on your own (at the sacrifice of quality of course).

Financially:

Financially speaking, you could recreate this play kit for as little as $90 which does come in less than the cost of this play kit. However if you were to purchase all of the most expensive dupe options you're looking at spending $147, which is more than the cost of this play kit from Lovevery. You could always get it and resell the items you don't want, but I will say it's one of the play kits I most often see items being sold.

Qualitatively:

While I REALLY love a few items from this play kit (that marble maze gets SO much use in our house!! and both kids love the language objects, and the “reader” loves the ABC game) – I wouldn't feel like I was missing anything with the calming circle, board, or book.

With that said, just like every Lovevery product we've tested since 2018, the quality is superb. Their Montessori alphabet and objects are significantly more durable, easy to clean, and probably less toxic/more eco friendly than anything else you'll get off Amazon or Etsy.

So while I like the idea of working through frustration this play kit, I find that other play kits from this year offer the opportunity just as well, if not better – and the book ‘Charlie Learns Something New' from Lovevery's The Connector Play Kit I think does a better job of discussing this (and is one of our favorite Lovevery books of all time).

Quick Shop Amazon Alternatives:

Shop “The Persister” Play Kit From Lovevery here!

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