Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Early Elementary School Years
Categories: Music

 


2012 Award
Guitar Confetti
(Janod $30 Score:)

A handsome colorful first guitar. This is not a toy, but a first instrument with a bright painted wooden body and six steel strings. The instrument does not come with music or instruction, though the company plans to put music on their website. This French company is new to American markets. They also make a ukulele and a neat xylophone. These are marked 3 and up, but more appropriate for older preschoolers and early school years children.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Award
Janod Grand Xylo Confetti
(Janod $19.99 Score:)

We were delighted to find that this beautiful line of French toys is now available in the US market. The music line is particularly welcomed.  Most of the musical toys on the market in the past several years have had terrible tone. As Randy would say - way too "pitchy". This oversized wooden xylo is cheerfully designed in white with bold dots of color. Take a listen to the video so you can hear the lovely sound quality. 

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2012.

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2011 Award
Chimalong XR
(Woodstock Percussion $150 Score:)

We found this chimalong had sound quality closer to the original Chimalong. The chimes are bigger and rest in a cradle stand. Kids can follow the music or the numbers or color-coded notation. It has better sound quality than most musical toys. That said, it does not have all that musicians with perfect pitch would desire.  We suggest you try this in the toy shop and see how it sounds to you and (given the price) decide if your child is going to find this a compelling toy to return to again and again. It is one of those big ticket items that should be memorable. That will depend upon how good a match it is to the child who gets it. It is not one of those toys that instantly or automatically plays. Kids have to apply themselves. Some like that kind of challenge - others will fiddle with it a few times and then leave it in a corner. You have to know the child you are bringing this to. The age label says 3 & up. We think it will be a better choice for 5 & up.  The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements.  We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
First Act Discovery Acoustic Guitars
(First Act Discovery $29.99 Score:)

It’s rare to find an instrument for kids that is scaled for them, has good sound, and won’t break the bank. This is the one! A true beginners guitar that rated high with our tester's dad (a musician) and our tester, who called it the "most beautiful guitar in the world!" Her dad dubbed it, "a really cool, substantial instrument." He tuned it for her, and she's been strumming ever since. "It's holding its tuning
very well. The strings are good, the size is perfect, and it sounds good. It came with 2 extra strings, a nice idea, and some chord inserts to teach the fret board. It is packaged with 3 chords, and from what I've gathered, you can buy more from the company and on their website. A good value-added opportunity, the teaching element."

It comes in a pink and purple girlie one, a graffiti version or the good looking natural wood one pictured. The sound quality is the same on all, so choose the one that will appeal the most to your aspiring musician.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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1995 Awards
Chimalong
(Woodstock Percussion $39.99 Score:)

Unlike most musical toys for kids, the tone of this metal-chime xylophone is lovely. Can be played by number/color or musical notation. Can be enjoyed by a preschooler, but becomes a true musical instrument for older children--also reinforces reading from left to right. Mini version is less expensive, but is not as sweet sounding. That said, this is a pleasant travel take-along toy. Says 3 & up; we'd say 4–8.

The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 1995. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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1999 Award
Glockenspiel Making Kit
(Woodstock Percussion $15 Score:) Kids "construct" the playing pieces of this instrument by placing them on the frame in size and number order. Kids discover which keys are higher and lower. Says 4 & up, but 5–8s will get more play and learning from this kit. Also top-rated: Rainstick Kit ($20) and Mbira Kit ($20). Woodstock also has a sweet sounding Glockenspiel with golden chimes. It's hard to read the letters on the chimes in order to read music- otherwise it's got perfect pitch!

Age: Early School Years. Award Year: 1999.

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2000 Awards
Guitar
(Woodstock Percussion $50 Score:) A beauty for beginners who are not big enough for a full-sized guitar. Also top rated, a child-sized Trap set ($150) with snare, tom-tom, bass, and cymbal.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 2000.

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1997 Awards
Kids' Tom Tom
(Woodstock Percussion $40 Score:) If you're lucky, they'll let you play this colorful drum while they dance—or switch roles and boogie! Comes with mallets, but testers say that tones are better when played by hand. Also terrific: a Kids' Konga Drum, Two-Headed Bongo, and Ocean Drum.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 1997.

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1995 Awards
Music Maker Harp
(Peeleman-McLaughlin $50 Score:) No electronic sounds here. This is a cross between a zither and an autoharp, but much easier to learn to play. Slip one of 12 follow-the-dot song sheets under the strings and pluck on the dotted lines. Has a soft and lovely tone. Includes folk, Beatles, and classical music sheets. You can buy extra music for this once the first set is mastered. 6 and up.

Age: Early School Years,Later School Years. Award Year: 1995.

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Awards
Lynn Kleiner Rhythm Sets
(Remo $24.95 Score:) Many instruments for young kids make noise instead of music and are basically unsafe. Strike up the rhythm band with these kits that are well crafted with sound and safety in mind. Babies Make Music includes jingle shaker, wrist jingle, and a small drum and scarf (safe enough for toddlers who still mouth their toys). 2 & up. Kids Make Music includes a 7" tambourine, triangle, wrist bell (with big jingles), rhythm sticks, and one maraca; Kids Make Music, Too has an 8" drum, scarf, finger cymbals, woodblock with mallet, and one egg shaker. 3 & up. SNAP Activity: Use drum or rhythm sticks for a math game. Make a stack of cards labeled with numbers 1-10. Put them face down. Player draws a card and taps that number. Other player must guess the number on your card. If she gets it, give her the card. At the end of the game switch parts. Now the other player does the reading and tapping. (800) 397-9378.

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

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