Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Late Elementary School Years
Categories: Construction Toys

 


2013 Award
Playmobil City Action Cargo Boat with Loading Crane
(Playmobil $79 Score:)

An 80-piece cargo boat with working crane that pivots 360 degrees. Ideal for loading important products from the cargo boat to crane and onto the plane. This comes with a two containers, three action mini-figures, and a ship's galley complete with coffeemaker for the crew's long nights at sea.  4 & up.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
LEGO Creator Family House
(Lego Systems, Inc. $74.99 Score:)

A gender free house that can be built as a modern Mediterranean villa, a classic family home, or turned into a factory. There are 756 pieces and clear instructions for building and rebuilding this versatile set. Testers loved the working light brick that illuminates the interior with a golden glow. Depending on the site, kids can choose to build a variety of accessories such as a pool, BBQ, or delivery van. 8-12.

Age: Later School Years, Tweens. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
LEGO Friends Heartlake High
(Lego Systems, Inc. $49.99 Score:)

Our testers loved the attention to detail on this two-level yellow and blue high school. We wish our high school had window boxes! The lab in tricked out with everything for science experiments including a microscope and there's even a telescope.  The school also includes a music and arts room, lockers and for your outdoor dining pleasure, there's a picnic table for lunch. Comes with Stephanie, Matthew and Ms. Stevens. With 487 pieces this is satisfying build for intermediate builders.  LEGO Friends remains a consistent hit with our girl testers who both enjoy the building experience and then use the settings for pretend play.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
LEGO STAR WARS Corporate Alliance Tank Droid
(Lego Systems, Inc. $24.00 Score:)

With only 271 pieces this is not a huge build but a very satisfying set because of the interesting and unusual treads that the droid tank moves on.  Our 6 year old tester really loved that aspect of this build.  The entire Star Wars series from LEGO has really challenged their designers to come up with new and what we find to be very exciting new builds.  Here's our builder's model:

""""""

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
LEGO STAR WARS Battle of Hoth
(Lego Systems, Inc. $49.99 Score:)

Our testers enjoyed this set a great deal.  The more detail in these sets the better the reviews they receive from our Star Wars fans.  According to our 9 year old tester: "The biggest and 'coolest' part of this Lego set was the snowspeeder (aircraft). He really liked that the hatch covers opened up to reveal detailed control panels underneath. Other 'cool' realistic details: the wings have articulated and poseable flaps; there is a working tow hook cable that can be let out or wound up; and the clear canopy opensup so that minifigure Luke can be placed inside the cockpit.

Our  six year old tester also enjoyed the build and loved that there was a Luke Skywalker minifigure. Both our six year old and 9 year old separately noted that Luke's outfit was more detailed with a snowspeeder suit and helmet.

We were delighted to hear that once the 9 year old finished building, the set became key to a reenactments of the Batttle of Hoth (with variations) for the next two weeks.

The set also got a thumbs up for the "new and improved brick separator (with axel-pusher)! Such an invaluable little tool greatly aids in the release of stuck Lego pieces."

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years, Tweens. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
Playmobil City Action Cargo & Passenger Aircraft & Tower
(Playmobil $109 Score:)

Wait till they see this enormous jetliner and control tower! Once assembled this becomes a setting for dramatic play. The cargo jetliner has a lift-up nose allowing kids to see the controls and the pilot and copilot. It has a removable roof to put mini-figures in the five seats. No detail left to chance, the cabin has an on-board toilet! You may want to add extra characters since it comes with just five mini-figures. Our builder had some trouble fitting the windows into place and getting one of the doors to stay put and he was way over the 4-10 age on the box. This is not a set younger kids of 4-7 can build on their own. It is a parent child project that takes time and patience. But by all means, involve your beginner in the process of finding the pieces and even snapping some of them in place. Young chidren like to feel they are helping with the building, so announce things for them to give you as you work on the big pieces. It is a fine way to show them how working step by step and following directions works to create a finished end product to enjoy. Older Playmobil builders with have no trouble getting this setting ready for playing and displaying. 134 pieces 4-10

Age: Preschool, Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
LEGO City Cargo Terminal
(Lego Systems, Inc. $99 Score:)

The first step to becoming a computer programmer begins with learning about sequence. For  builders this is a great place to start as a stepping stone to more advanced robotic sets offered by LEGO (see Mindstorms EV3).  Our testers found this giant size jet and control tower "totally awesome!" The handsome cargo plane has wheels that pivot allowing it to turn with ease on the ground. It has a big cargo door where the conveyer belt hooks up and the back end hinges open for alternate access. Testers loved the working conveyer belt they could turn to put cargo in or out of the plane. They also liked the working fork lift that is loaded with gold bars! Like all Lego sets, this is designed with an eye for details and clever accessories: there is a fuel truck, a complete cast of five mini-characters; a pilot, controllor and three workers. The control tower features a rotating radar dish, antenna and space for a mini-figure. 658 pieces. For the younger child this will be a parent-child project in the building stage. Once it is put together however, the set becomes a mini-setting for pretend play. 6-12

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
Lego City Cargo Heliplane
(Lego Systems, Inc. $50 Score:)

This 393-piece set is loaded with wonderful working parts: it has a working cargo lift for moving logs, a cargo bay door at the back that opens for loading and the wheels that turn for easy ground navigation. Best of all, the way the adjustable propellers turn is awesome! Kit includes three mini-figures, a pilot and two lumberjacks, a quad bike and other accessories. Our tester also found the building directions clear and appreciated the way the packages of parts helped to keep him organized. Building this kind of model helps develop a sense working in an orderly step-by-step way, following directions, using fine motor skills, as well as patience for projects that are not instantaneous. Though some models are strictly for display, this is one that lends itself to imaginative dramatic play. 5-12

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
Magformers Inspire Sets
(Magformers $24.99-49.99 Score:)

Getting some girls into construction play seems to work by coloring the building materials to their taste. Although we prefer gender free materials, we still think it more important for girls to be building, since this is one of the ways that kids develop their understanding of spatial relationships and basic math concepts. For generations, boys excelled in these areas, in part, because of the experience they had from building models and construction sets. Giving girls construction sets is one way to give girls the mindset and can-do math skills needed for wider career choices. New from Magformers, two gender specific sets of magnetic shapes colored in shades of pink, purple, aqua and blue. Choose a 14 or 30 piece set. Each comes with triangles and squares that can be used to copy models or for open-ended creations and discoveries. All magnets are safely inside the plastic forms. Hands-on experiments help kids discover not only some math concepts, they have to deal directly with the magnetic poles inside the plastic forms, turning them so that they attract. Also see: Magformers Light Show. This combines stealth learning: math, science, visual and manual dexterity, creative problem solving, construction play, imagination, and good fun.  Marked for 3 & up, we think these make more sense for slightly older players.

 

Age: Preschool, Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 


2013 Award
Magformers Wow Set
(Magformers $49.99 Score:)

Clever set of 16 magnetic shapes in colorful squares and triangles plus wheels, and a driver square, that can be used in open-ended construction or by following the patterns for creating 20 kinds of working vehicles. The set also includes pattern cards that are like tangrams and challenge players to discover how to make a variety of larger geometric shapes from the squares and triangles. Hands-on experiments help kids discover not only some math concepts, they have to deal directly with the magnetic poles inside the plastic forms, turning them so that they attract. All magnets are safely inside the plastic forms. This combines stealth learning: math, science, visual and manual dexterity, creative problem solving, construction play, imagination, and good fun. 6 & up.

Age: Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2013.

Comments: Be the first to post _______________________________________________________________________

 

 

 

 

 

 

Products for Infants
Products for Toddlers
Products for Preschoolers
Products for Early School Years
Products for Later School Years
Twitter   Facebook     YouTube 

Oppenheim Toy Portfolio - All Rights Reserved. Oppenheim Toy Portfolio, Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award, and Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Blue Chip Award are Registered Trademarks of the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio.


Instructions for submitting product to the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio for review.

 

 

Contact the Toyportfolio by phone at (212) 598-0502 or by email at Webmaster@Toyportfolio.com.

Copyright 1995-2013

 

Products reviewed by the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio are provided by the manufacturer at their cost. The Oppenheim Toy Portfolio does not require or accept fees for reviewing products.