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Posted on Jun 26, 2013

Shelby’s Snack Shack – Pretty Pug Counting Game

Shelby’s Snack Shack – Pretty Pug Counting Game

Meet Shelby.

I think he just might be the cutest board game character I’ve ever seen.

Shelby Dog Side

I knew I was onto a winner when Son#2 looked at the box and squealed ‘I play this at school’. So Shelby’s Snack Shack is educational enough for my son’s school, and fun enough that he wants to play it at home too.

Here’s my hands on review.

The Product:

Shelby’s Snack Shack from Learning Resources (UK) / Educational Insights (US).
Priced at around £20 / $20 (toys really cost more in the UK).
Suitable for ages 4 years and up.
For 2-4 players.

Shelby Box

About The Game:

Inside the box you get 40 squishy dog bones, four tubs, the spinner, and Shelby-shaped tweezers.

Shelby Contents

Place all the bones in the up-turned lid of the box, which has really cute pastel graphics of a beach scene.

Each player takes it in turns with the spinner. First you spin the wheel on the left to find out what action is to happen: collect bones; steal opponents bones; a seagull steals your bones; or miss a turn. The second spinner tells you how many bones are involved in this action. Keep playing until all the bones have been cleared from the beach.

Why We Loved It:

Beautifully Made
This is a quality product. You can’t see from the photos, but the bones, which I would have expected to be hollow moulded plastic, are actually a strong solid rubber, making them easier to grip in the tweezers. The tweezers are chunky so the hinge joint is more robust than on other pairs of plastic tweezers I have seen. Although the box, tubs and spinners are only made from cardboard, it is thick and sturdy, and the print job on them is beautiful.

Fine Motor Skills
Squishing (I believe that’s the technical term) the bones between the tweezers, then dropping them in the tub helps develop grip strength and hand-eye-coordination.

Shelby Dog

Maths Skills
For young children, this game is great for counting skills.

For older children you can do so much more. Here’s some examples from our game –

  • Estimating quantities – by looking at the tubs and guessing, before counting, which tubs have the most and least.
  • Grouping into fives – As with just two players you can have quiet a few bones in one tub, we grouped them into fives, then counted up in fives, and talked about the five times table.
  • Addition and subtraction – state how many bones are in the tub, and how many you are adding / taking, and ask how many will be left.

Want Your Own Shelby’s Snack Shack?

Learning Resources are giving away 5 copies of Shelby’s Snack Shack, to UK residents, with this simple survey, until 9th July.

You can buy the game directly from the Learning Resources and Educational Insights websites, or from and

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