Chatterbox's make great play things, i remember my mum spelling out words with them and then she would write funny things on the inside. They make a great medium for learning.
I have made a few for Flynn, the first has got our names on the outside then numbers on the inside, then shapes under the lift up bit. The second has colours on the outside, sight words on the inside and then positive sentences under the lift up triangle along the lines of "your a star" and "my little champion". I think this helps to boost his confidence ans i hope it will reinforce that learning is a positive experience. The green one is all about the alphabet, i worked through the letters on the outer, inner and the under layers. The bottom layer also has some words begining with that letter.
So how do you use them? i hope this makes sense, you pop your fingers into the bottom triangle and move the chatterbox as if it is a mouth. You spell out the word your child has chosen, or run through the alphabet until you hit that letter. Then you let them choose from the inner part, and you spell count or run through alphabet, when you finish this time you lift the little triangle flap and read whats underneath.
So how do you make one? im hooking you up on ehow and a video on metacafe