Funded! This project was successfully funded on March 29, 2013.

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Four gorgeous, educational, nontoxic, extremely durable card sets designed for how kids play and work.

We've reached our goal! Thank you all for your support so far!

Now, let's talk stretch goals ladies and gentleman! :-D

• IF we make it to $2000.00 over, every deck will come with a durable, cotton, double drawstring bag printed with the deck's name and "logo" on it from Stateline Bags! Store those decks in style, made in the USA!

• IF we make it to $4000.00 over, I'll offer bonus Alphabet decks for $11 each. Not yet though (no additions yet :-P, I know you love your bonus decks!).

• IF we make it to $6000.00 over, I'll add a bonus card to EVERYONE'S order featuring original art from a nationally-known artist, to be confirmed.

Okay, how do we reach these goals? With more Facebook sharing! More bonus Alphabet decks at $13 each! Click "Manage Your Pledge" now and manually add the additional $ amount to your existing pledge amount. 

Here's a quick video on how to add decks if you're a visual person, like me: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10151540454551131

They'll go back up to $19.95 on Saturday. I mean it. :-)

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Now, about the project:

Kids love to play with cards – credit cards, gift cards and flash cards – but most of those plastic cards are made of toxic PVC and paper cards disintegrate in small children's mouths. So I've designed four new gorgeous sets of extremely durable, educational and non-toxic plastic cards for very small children to play and work with. 

Our Alphabet deck was a hit but WE'RE SOLD OUT! So I'm proud to announce four new decks of cards! 

  • Color & Shape
  • Numbers 
  • GO! 
  • My Wallet  (cards, play money, wallet and a companion iOS app!)
  • PLUS a NEW Alphabet Wallet Card PREORDER (as of March 22)

Each deck has cool, modern illustrations that even the smallest child will find fascinating. Great for strollers and busy toddler hands!

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AS SEEN ON: 

Pioneer Woman's Homeschool Blog
Sew Liberated
How We Montessori
At Home with Montessori
Montessori Print Shop

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Silas playing with the Alphabet deck.
Silas playing with the Alphabet deck.

Enticing and educational.     Children are drawn to cards of all kinds (e.g. the cards in your wallet, flash cards) but these cards are made just for them. These wallet cards offer small children the opportunity to learn while they are playing with something they already love. These cards are a welcome addition in an informal home setting or a prepared educational environment.

Non-toxic and durable.     The cards are made from a food-grade, non-toxic, BPA free, biodegradable and curbside recyclable plastic made in the U.S.A. The inks and coatings are non-toxic and food-safe. Each card (and the graphics printed on them) can withstand child-induced folding, breaking, scratching, bites, rips and tearing. 

Smart!     Each card is punched with a hole in the corner and comes with a sturdy re-closable ring to keep the cards together, but as the child grows, the cards can be taken off the ring to be carried around in their little sticky palms, and placed into their tiny pockets or wallets. All cards fit back on the ring for clean up and storage. 

About Color & Shape

All images shown in the mockups are placeholders.

Learning colors and shapes is an exciting milestone in every child's development. Being able to recognize and verbalize the colors around them, gives children an expanded and enriched sense of their world. I remember the day when Owen correctly identified his rubber duck as Yellow with a orange beak, we were both so proud of our work, smiling from ear to ear!

My boys are now three years old but are both a little slow developmentally on recognizing shapes. Personally, I'm excited for the boys to have access to these new Color & Shape cards in a durable format with which they can work and play. Matching activities are big in our house, and I can't wait to work with colored clay to make new shapes with them. 

The fronts of the cards feature beautiful watercolor and ink illustrations of basic shapes, and a solid block of the coordinating color at the bottom of the card.

We're excited to have talented artist Nomoco, from London, creating 13 beautiful illustrations representing common colors and shapes.

Her work can be seen in The New York Times, Kumon, and with Gap, Neiman Marcus, and Kellogg's. She also produces work under her full name, Kazuko Nomoto.
 
The backs of the cards feature a solo image of the coordinating shape, the name of the shape and the color e.g "Orange Square" in English, Spanish and French.

There are 15 cards in this deck, 13 color and shape combinations ("Red Circle", "Orange Square") and front and back cover cards. 

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About Numbers

All images shown in the mockups are placeholders.

Counting is a skill that is mastered through practice and exposure. As we speak, my boys are learning to count. We count everyday, but grasping the concept is still confusing to them. It has been difficult to find affordable educational materials that are durable and simple for them to reference. I really look forward to working with them with these new cards and finding familiar objects in our own home to count and match with the artwork on the cards. I hope you and your children find these cards as exciting and useful as ours will.

The numbers deck is Illustrated by Eugene & Louise, a Belgium based creative studio founded by the happy husband and wife team Glenn D'Hondt and Sylvia Meert. They're the artists behind Pictureka!, a multi award winning board game Eugene & Louise co-developed and recently licensed to Hasbro.

The fronts of the Numbers cards feature groups of common household items depicted in a new fascinating way along with the number, and a small row of dots that coordinate with the amount, e.g  " 3  • • •   "

The backs of the cards will feature the large coordinating digit, the written coordinating word, "Three" in English, Spanish and French and a repeat of the coordinating dots for a early learners. 

There are 15 cards in this deck, 13 numbers (0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 100 and 1000) and front and back cover cards.

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About GO!

All images shown in the mockups are placeholders.

This deck features people moving in cool and exciting ways – on skateboards, in hang-gliders, on skis! Toddlers and Pre-Schoolers will jump for joy when they get their little hands on these cards. 

The backs of each card have a sentence with (at least) a noun, adjective and a verb. Example: "The child skis down the hill". Each part of speech will be indicated by a color following the Montessori standard.

Small children will love the cool illustrations of people doing cool stuff, young school-aged children will benefit from an exciting reading and matching opportunity and older children will benefit from learning and identifying the parts of speech.

Go! is illustrated by Jared Andrew Schorr from California. He specializes in creating whimsical and surprisingly detailed work entirely from cut paper.His work has appeared in The New York Times, Good Magazine, WIRED and on living room walls around the world.


There are 15 cards in this deck, 13 images of people moving in exciting ways (on skateboards, in hang-gliders, on skis) and front and back cover cards.
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About "my wallet" card set

All images shown in the mockups are placeholders.

This is a very special set! Cards (a license, a bank card, a children's museum membership card and a library card). Play money (printed on durable Tyvek) and a cool wallet to hold it all together (handmade by the 35 year-old Ohio bag company, Drifter). Digital toys (free iOS app pairing with each card's theme).

The cards     I carefully and thoughtfully designed this set myself based on nearly three years of intense observation. These four cards were created for the children in our lives who love pulling apart wallets (my twins!). Mimicking cards found in adult's wallets, these durable and safe cards offer hours of pretend play. 


My boys' love of cards started when they were about eight months old. They would see me carry around my wallet and use the cards inside so frequently, that my wallet quickly become their most favorite plaything. I ended up buying them each their own wallet at our local thrift shop and collecting gift cards from places like Target and Starbucks to fill their wallets so they'd stop emptying mine! 

However, the gift cards I was getting from retail stores were made of toxic PVC, and the boys were putting them in their little mouths. The cards, covered in corporate logos, offered very little educational opportunities. 
These cards are safe and cool! Perfect for busy toddlers and preschoolers stuck in checkout lanes, airports, or on long drives buckled into their carseats.

Play money     Another thing the boys get giddy about is paper! I couldn't have anything made of paper in their arms' reach until they were about two years old because it would just end up in their mouths… it was really frustrating to have to put books, cards from relatives, even their own drawings on high shelves and taped high up on the walls, out of their reach. 


Enter Tyvek! Non-toxic, durable, printable. We've designed four modern, distinctive, colorful play money bills in 1, 5, 10 and 20 increments. These play bills can withstand rip, tears, moisture and toddler bites. These bills will undoubtedly be a popular addition to your children's pretend play routine. Get ready to play "store"!


Wallet     We've teamed up with Drifter, the 35 year-old Ohio bag company, to design and hand-make a simple wallet design with durable nontoxic, materials.  http://www.drifterbag.com


The wallet can hold all of the cards and play dollar bills too! 


Digital toys, our iOS app     This special card set is paired with a custom iOS app for iPhone and iPod Touch! 

You with the help of your tech-saavy children (ages 3 to 6) can scan each card with our custom iOS app, and unlock interactive activities that pair with each card's theme. The app will be downloadable free from the iTunes Store in August.

Library Card "digital toy"     When scanned, the library card unlocks a portable virtual library, with original books to select and read, written and illustrated by my husband I myself. These digital books are ones we, as parents, find important in our own children's lives – the alphabet, colors, numbers, shapes, and animals. Read and enjoy them together with your children, we hope they make you both smile.

Children's Museum Membership Card "digital toy"     The Children's Museum card unlocks three simple activities that our family LOVES at our local Children's Museum – bubbles, percussion instruments, and puppets! 



These simple interactions are meant to companions to the real thing, they aren't meant to replace physical interactions, only to inspire children to play in new ways. If you can't make it to the museum with your children today, you have a miniature one in your pocket!

Driver's License"digital toy"     The Driver's License card unlocks one on the simplest and delightful of digital toys – with help from your iPhone or iPod Touch camera, your child's face will appear in a Driver's License photo frame. Their favorite pictures can be saved to the device. And with your help, can be printed and used in the physical form!  

Your kids will be delighted to have their OWN license! They WILL ask to drive the car, however, be ready with an answer. The baby, the cat, the dog… yes they can have a license too. 

Bank Card"digital toy"     One activity that absolutely fascinates my children is a visit to the ATM. Momma puts in a card, a secret code and money comes out! Money! Last Summer, they even requested their own ATM here in our house, and a cardboard box has done the trick nicely, but now they each can have one on their iPod. 


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Why apps?

Creating applications are a new and exciting direction for us as a small business. When I first imagined making something for children, it was a physical thing for children to hold in their hands, but as I watch my children grow and change, the company has also followed suit. 

This past Fall, my husband purchased two iPod touches for the boys to play take pictures with. They love their iPods! 

The boys have taken over 1000 photos and videos EACH since this time and each enjoy a suite of applications that my husband and I have curated for them. We select age-appropriate applications made by PBSToca Boca and Montessorium. It's important that each "game" that the boys have offers some educational benefit, learning numbers, letters, shapes, the differences between good choices and bad choices. 


We made sure to enable parental controls on each one of the iPods, making sure that they were safe for them to play with (they can't open YouTube or Safari, for example). They only have about a dozen applications, and all of the administrative options are hidden from them.

They are allowed 15 minutes a day maximum to play with their iPods, and usually Owen is watching and conversing with PBS Kids videos, and Silas is taking pictures. Sometimes, they choose instead to watch YouTube videos on my iPhone, mostly of scuba-divers, robots or motorcycles. We really enjoy browsing the sites, The Kid Should See This, Olive Us, and Cool Hunting Videos.

My husband (Interaction Designer) and I (former Interaction and Graphic Designer) are designing each screen and interaction carefully, and our friend Chris Rittersdorf (Software Craftsman) is developing the application. The boys have been helping to inspire interactions, test ideas and use the prototypes. Together, as a family, we're focused on making simple, fun, and engaging digital toys for small children.

We'll never have advertising or in-app purchases. We'll never sell or share your information, and we'll never expose your children in content that's not appropriate for them. 

It's my personal opinion that for small children, digital interactions and screens should be limited and supervised, they should never be used as pacifiers. Screen interactions should be just that, interactions. Our digital games are intended to enrich children's lives and inspire them to play. 

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Who am I?

Hi, my name is Marie-Claire Camp. I'm a former full-time Graphic and Interaction Designer, now work-at-home Momma of twin three year old boys, Owen and Silas. 

Our family celebrating in our pajamas this Summer after our first Kickstarter campaign was funded!
Our family celebrating in our pajamas this Summer after our first Kickstarter campaign was funded!

I graduated from Kendall College of Art and Design with a BFA in Visual Communications and worked professionally as a designer for eight years. As a child and young adult, I attended Montessori school, and the things I learned there influence everything I make and do. I'm empathic, creative and really, really, really patient. 

My amazing husband, Victor, works outside of the home as an Interaction Designer and Software Craftsman. Our family enjoys making complex things out of Duplos, (we often get requests to make things like "snow", or a "tiny baby") drawing motorcycles, and singing songs together.

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Where will the money go?

• More than 40 pieces of amazing original artwork from three brilliant an nationally known artists.

• American-made nontoxic plastic from Transilwrap, an Indiana company.

• Quality printing, coatings and finishing from Tepel Brother Printing in Troy, Michigan.

• Kickstarter and Amazon fees.

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Card Safety

These cards should be used under adult supervision. Choking can result from anything children put into their mouths.

These cards are extremely durable, but not indestructible! Inspect each card regularly and immediately remove and discard any cards showing signs of breaks or cracks. Immediately remove and discard any cards or pieces if a break occurs.

As a card could potentially break, they are intended for ages 3 and up.

Do not attach to crib or playpen. Possible entanglement or strangulation injury when attached to crib or playpen


Keeping it Small

SO Awesome, LLC is registered as a Small Batch Manufacturer with the CPSC, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.


Card Care

Got baby spit up, applesauce or something else yucky on your cards? It happens. Simply rinse them with cool water and a soft cloth. No soap 
needed! No steel wool please. Air or towel-dry.

Materials 

Each card is made from an  amazingly durable, biodegradable, non-toxic, kid-safe, food-safe plastic made in Franklin Park, IL. They are printed with non-toxic inks and coatings in Troy, MI.

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Press and Blogs 

(for the Children's Alphabet Wallet Card Deck)

Check out Pioneer Woman's Homeschooling Blog, by OMSH, Heather L Sanders http://thepioneerwoman.com/homeschooling/2012/08/childrens-abc-wallet-card-project-at-kickstarter/


How We Montessori, by Kylie D'Alton

http://www.howwemontessori.com/how-we-montessori/2012/08/childrens-abc-wallet-cards-.html

At Home with Montessori, Meghan Hicks

http://montessorihomes.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/new-kid-on-block.html

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Share!

We get most of our Kickstarter support through Facebook. So please consider sharing this project with your friends and family with the link at the top of the page (under the video).

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Thanks!

Our family is so excited to introduce all four of these amazing decks to you. We hope you'll enjoy working and playing with them as much as all of our previous backers have enjoyed their Alphabet Decks.Thank you for supporting this “Momma-made” invention!

Sincerely,

Marie-Claire Camp 
Creator of Children's Alphabet Wallet Cards 
Owner of SO Awesome, LLC in Grand Rapids, Michigan

Email me directly: mc@youguysaresoawesome.com
On facebook at http://www.facebook.com/ChildrensWalletCards 
Our website at www.YouGuysAreSoAwesome.com
Our online store to immediately purchase the Alphabet Deck (produced in August of 2012, posters, wallets and more, here: http://walletcards.bigcartel.com

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

This is my second Kickstarter campaign, and even though this one is more ambitious, I know it will run more smoothly than the first. I learned so many lessons in fulfillment logistics alone that will shave at least a month off this one! I'm hoping to under-promise and over deliver this time too. Things happen that not even I can control, so I built in two extra months of padding for art creation, printing, production and fulfillment.

Every project can be met with unexpected delays, especially when you have small children at home like I do! For example, last March, the boys both caught viral pneumonia and we were sick for an entire month. However if there's anyone who works harder that I do to keep things running smoothly and on time, I'd be impressed. Ask my husband about our demanding breakfast timeline!

I was almost two months behind in my first campaign, and it was terribly hard to discover that there was nothing I could do to change that. Short of building a time machine, and hiring a team of 12 people to fill out online customs forms day and night, I did everything in my power to keep things in line. I recruited fourteen friends to help with fulfillment last time and we worked our buns off getting all the US orders out in two days!

I'm just one person, but I work like a team… just ask my last 376 happy Backers, 7 retail locations and 100+ online-shop customers!

FAQ

  • You can order Alphabet decks here! http://walletcards.bigcartel.com I ship out orders all over the world :-)

    Last updated:
  • If you've already pledged, click on the blue "Manage Your Pledge" button at the top of the page and manually add the amount for the decks you're interested in ($18 for My Wallet and $10 for the other three decks).

    If you've not yet pledged, please choose a pledge level THEN add the total amount for the decks you're interested in ($18 for My Wallet and $10 for the other three decks) on top of that.

    Then send me a message at mc@youguysaresoawesome.com letting me know which ones you want and I'll add them to your order on my end!

    Thanks so much for your support!

    Last updated:
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  • Pledge $4 or more
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    2 backers

    JUST a single Child's License Card + plus iOS "my wallet" app download. Shipped. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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    32 backers

    JUST the "NUMBERS" Deck with ring. Shipped. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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    48 backers

    JUST the "COLOR & SHAPE" Deck with ring. Shipped. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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    21 backers

    JUST the "GO!" Deck with ring. Shipped. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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    46 backers

    JUST "MY WALLET" (4 cards, 4 cool Tyvek play money bills, in an amazing handmade wallet, iOS app download). Shipped. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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    33 backers

    The Children's Alphabet Wallet Cards PREORDER. We're sold out on our webstore! This is the only place to get your hands on the Alphabet deck, plus for $1 less and FREE SHIPPING for US Backers.

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    13 backers

    GET one GIVE one. Choose one deck for yourself and another deck goes to a literacy-based nonprofit org here in West Michigan. + A thank you listing on our website for your support. {PLEASE MESSAGE to indicate which deck you'd prefer}

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    143 backers

    All FOUR decks! Shipped. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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    106 backers

    All FOUR decks PLUS the Alphabet Deck too! Shipped. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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    18 backers

    All four decks for YOU, PLUS all four decks given to a literacy-based nonprofit organization here in West Michigan. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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  • Pledge $115 or more
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    2 backers

    For retailers with patience - You know your customers and they are searching for a durable, modern and safe stroller-card set or durable flash card set for their small children. Your contribution at this level will assure you to be the first to offer this product in your area. (Value based on minimum wholesale order). Thanks for believing in Children's Wallet Cards!

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    For Educators - Contribution at this level will allow your homeschool group, school, or education co-op to select bundles of decks for your prepared education environments! Alphabet deck may be included as well.

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  • Pledge $300 or more
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    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    my wallet card SPONSOR! Your child's likeness/photo featured on the child's pretend photo BANK CARD in the my wallet card deck. + reward includes TWO sets of the "my wallet" package! and a iOS app download too. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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  • Pledge $300 or more
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    1 backer All gone!

    my wallet card SPONSOR! Your child's likeness/photo featured on the child's pretend license card in the my wallet card deck. So cool!! He or she will LOVE having a custom "license" many, many years before they can legally drive :-) + reward includes TWO sets of the "my wallet" package! and a iOS app download too. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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  • Pledge $300 or more
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    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    my wallet card SPONSOR! Your whole family's likeness/photo and name featured on the pretend CHILDREN'S MUSEUM family membership card in the my wallet card deck. So cool! + reward includes TWO sets of the "my wallet" package! and a iOS app download too. + A thank you listing on our website for your support.

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  • Pledge $500 or more
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    PARTY at our house! In the Grand Rapids, Michigan area? Come on over for a Deck Release Dance Party complete with local food, drinks, pie and toddlers for you and your whole family. + All four decks for YOU, PLUS all four decks given to a literacy-based nonprofit organization here in West Michigan. + Thank you swag bags for everyone in your family complete with original drawings from Silas and Owen. :-) + A HUGE thank you listing on our website for your support.

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  • Pledge $2,000 or more
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    2 backers

    Invest in Children's Wallet Cards! You'll get paid back in full + ten assorted decks for free. Let's talk: mc@youguysaresoawesome.com

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Funding period

- (30 days)