Who We Are
Learning Resources Ltd began in 1994 with a family of coloured bear counters. The Three Bear Family Counters can be sorted by colour, size and weight, which puts them apart from other colour counters that can only be sorted into coloured groups. It was this simple innovation that convinced Managing Director, Dennis Blackmore, to join Learning Resources and have the opportunity to establish the company in the UK.
Over the past 25 years, our company has grown to supply award-winning, hands-on educational toys and learning products to more than 60 countries. Our toys are designed to help children build educational skills…and get ready to take on the world!
Our versatile products include play and learning activity sets, manipulatives and educational games that build foundational skills in key subject areas through exploration, imagination and fun. In addition, we offer simple technology products and teacher resources to support the delivery of education.
Learning is Where We Play and we want to help all kids love learning. That’s why we create toys that spark understanding, turning “I think I can” to “I know I can,” and helping kids feel like anything is possible.
“Almost everything has changed in the last 25 years, from the products we develop and sell to how and where our customers buy them. We now help children learn about maths, reading, science, creativity, Stem and coding; and from only selling to teachers in schools our products are now available on the high street and online. It’s gratifying to see how widely our products can inspire young children with a love of learning.” – Dennis Blackmore – MD
How We Develop Our Products
Our award-winning educational toys and games are designed to develop a variety of key skills while inspiring a child’s natural curiosity from a young age.
At Learning Resources, we invest time in understanding what children need to learn and how they might learn it. Products are then developed around that need, ensuring that they are hands on, appealing, easy to use and of a high quality. Moments are created where learning and play become one, and Learning Resources products are designed to instil a love of learning in both boys and girls, who often do not realise they are learning as they play.
An example of a product developed around the child’s needs is Times Table Swat! It was created in light of the online multiplication tables check that is being administered by schools to year four pupils in the 2019/20 academic year. Pupils are required to recall their times tables up to and including 12 x 12 by the end of year four, and both teachers and parents need ways of helping them achieve that.
Understanding this need for more times table related resources, our product development team created a game to give children a fun, alternative way of learning them. Times Table Swat! is designed to help children learn the 2 – 12 times tables by swatting the fly with the correct answer. The flies are colour-coded to match each times table, which means children can either learn one at a time, or multiple to make it more challenging. Added features including ‘fly spray’ and ‘stuck in the jam’ bring an element of fun to the game, where children risk losing the fly they swatted, or missing out on the next round of play. It makes for a great family game!
The idea for Times Table Swat! was taken from a popular existing game, Sight Word Swat! Game play is the same, but Sight Word Swat! features 300 high frequency words from phrases 2-6 of the government letters & sounds framework.
It’s the process of seeing what is required of a child at school, and creating a product that helps them to learn whilst also having fun, that makes us the leader in educational toys.
The History of Our Products
Learning Resources has produced hundreds of educational toys and learning aids over the last 25 years, from basic counters such as the Three Bear Family Counters, and leading all the way up to state of the art coding robots such as Botley® the Coding Robot and Artie 3000™, which uses drag and drop programming to teach coding.
Some of our products that were created in the 90’s are still standing strong today! For example, the Pretend & Play® Calculator Cash Register was released in 1994, but still remains a best-seller today – you can still find one in most classrooms and homes!
We have created an infographic to show the timeline of our best-selling products from 1994 to 2019. Do you remember playing with any of them, or having them in your classroom?