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Product Type: Toys
Age: Early Elementary School Years

 


2015 Award
LEGO Juniors Fire Suitcase
(Lego Systems, Inc. $19.99 Score:)

For that older preschooler and early school age child who has outgrown his duplos and is ready for more complex building, this 134-piece Lego Juniors Fire Suitcase is on the mark. Kids can build a fire helicopter, motorbike and a base station. It includes a number of fun accessories for dramatic play: 2 firefighter minifigures, a water hose, map, barrier, fire and lights. Includes easy instructions for the easy build. 4-7

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Gamewright Outfoxed!
(Gamewright $17.99 Score:)

Our testers liked working together to catch the critter that stole Mrs. Plumpert’s pot pie. Gathering clues as they moved around the board, they used the clue detector to eliminate possible thieves in this coperative game. It does call for an elaborate set up, but once the game begins it’s anybody’s guess who done it! But work fast before the culprit escapes and you and your pals are outfoxed! Game play is about 15 minutes. For 2-4 players ages 5 & up.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2015.

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Fisher-Price Imaginext Ultra T-Rex
(Fisher-Price $99.99 Score:)

For dino-haulics of a certain age, this Ultra T-Rex will be a heavily promoted holiday gift. This is no toy for the timid. It walks, it stomps, it roars and goes from crouching to standing at full height—2 ˝ feet tall! But that's not all, it opens its toothy jaws and closes them with chomping sounds. Sound and motion are blended with lights on its spikes and eyes that will scare off any little sisters or brothers. T-Rex can even fire boulders from its chest and claws (they do not go far; they sort of fall to the ground so they are not a safety problem as so many projectile toys can be.) Okay, it's true, this is a novelty toy that will probably gather dust before long, and end up in the landfill; that said, we have to admit, dino lovers are going to be wowed by this gy-normous motorized plastic-saurus. It will come to life with 4 AA batteries. Marked 36 months to 8 years. We say 5-7 is probably prime time for this one. AWARD pending testing.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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Hasbro Robots in Disguise, Super Bumblebee
(Hasbro $19.99 Score:)

One of three over-sized vehicles that transforms into a standup robot with sounds and lights. Made of lightweight plastic, this has a big look without a big ticket. There are some projectile parts that do not go far and have no punchthough it does have some scary sounds. It also comes with a backstory of the Transformer Autobots going after the evil Decepticons that are loose on Earth. For extra action and story, older kids, 9 & up can download the app, scan it into your phone and play the pre-made games. Better yet, encourage your kids to make up their own adventure stories and play them out. Award pending testing.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Awards
Blue Orange Ring It!
(Blue Orange Games $10 Score:)

A fast paced game with round cards to flip and match by color or number. Be the first to see a match, hit the bell (that comes with the game) and clap! Winners ring and clap their way to victory! A fun family game, unless the grown ups get too intense about being first. You have to let the wookie win some! A lot of laughs and fun for 5 and up.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2015.

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2015 Award
Zoomer Kitty, Midnight
(Zoomer $99 Score:)

It was love at first sight for our tester as Midnight, the magical kitty, showed off her tricks. MIdnight comes with a magic wand that will catch her attention when you wave it in front of her and she turns her head from side to side. Her eyes also change color while you play, her way of letting you know how she’s feeling. Midnight has sensors in her head, cheeks and ears and will purr with pleasure, just like a real cat. Unlike the furry kind, she can sing, dance and do tricks on demand (she is less independent and purr-snickety than any real cat. She is also an allergy free pet. 5-10

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Zoomer Chomplingz Tiger Tail
(Zoomer $39.99 Score:)

Tiger Tail is a less costly and a smaller dino than Zoomer Jester. That said, he is always ready for a bite. Try Hot Hands; put your hand in Tiger's mouth and pull it out before he can pull his teeth down on you.
Watch Tiger Tail try to catch his Dino Bone! He's motion activated or push his tail down and see him take off. This is a fun choice for 5-10's.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Zoomer Jester Dino
(zoomer $99 Score:)

This fierce looking dino moves fast on two wheels that scoot around and forward and back. All the while Jester makes scary motions and sounds with his head and tail. It’s not that easy to control this fierce looking creature, but our tester thought it was fun trying. For a less pricy dino, check out the Chomplingz Tiger Tail Interactive (39.99) 5-10

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2015. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2015 Award
Spin Master Quick Cups
(Spin Master $19.99 Score:)

This is a matching and stacking game. Each player has a set of five cups in five colors. Players take turns turning over a picture card at the start of each round. Now all players race to be the first to put their set of colored cups in the same order as shown on the card. As soon as you have matched the card, you must ring the bell to win the round and the card. Winner is the one with the most cards. A lively game that requires visual skills, sequencing, dexterity and speed. Comes with 30 small cups, a bell and picture cards. 6 & up

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2015.

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Minecraft Stop-Motion Movie Creator
(Mattel $32.99 Score:)

If you have a Minecraft fan in your house, you'll want to check out this new stop-motion movie creator. You'll need a smartphone to take the pictures with (it fits on the provided stand) and then your child's imagination takes over. Choose one of the six backgrounds and then yell "action" as you move the three Minecraft figures around your set. The APP then lets you create your own movie and share it with other people. Our testers had a new appreciation for what goes into animated movies. Marked 6 & up, but much older kids will enjoy this a lot more and be able to do it more independently. Award pending further review.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2015.

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