Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Preschoolers
Categories: Active Physical Play

 

Miracle Bubbles Glow Fusion
(Imperial Toy Company $9.99 Score:)

We had so many inquiries from our testers who were interested in bubbles that glow that we had to try them!  Here's the scoop. When you add the activation solution, it does seriously glow. This is a chemical reaction that happens very quickly. The downside, is that the bubbles themselves do not glow very much, but when they land, they do leave a glowing residue (that doesn't stain). The glow lasts for four hours. So you may be disappointed with the actual bubbles, the majority of our testers still thought the solution lighting up was pretty cool. We hope they can eventually find a way to make the bubbles glow!

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

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2012 Award
MegaBloks CAT 3-In-1 Ride-on
(Mega Bloks $49.99 Score:)

Finding a low-to-the-ground ride-on that actually steers but doesn't tip over is not so easy. At last, we have good news! This yellow construction truck is a combo fun for beginning walkers it can be used as a push toy and for foot to the ground riding. Sound buttons on the steering wheel will make a hit with toddlers and happily for adults, it has a volume control. It also comes with a detachable toolbox for beginning pretend play-for the older tots. The seat is more comfy than the company's earlier ride-on dump truck. This is really basic gear for active play and building big muscles. They say 1 & up. We say this is best for toddlers who are steady on their feet, which is often a little later.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2012. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2011 Award
Beastie Balls
(Rich Frog $8.99 Score:)

Covered in a soft terry cloth like material, these colorful fabric balls have stitched on features and knotties that baby can grab and probably chew on. There are lots of zany looking choices in many color combinations and in two sizes. One is a little bigger than a baseball the other is slightly bigger than a softball. All are soft, washable and have a nice rattle sound. Use them with infants for tracking. The bold black and white eyes will catch their attention--and the sound will not startle. Older infants will like crawling after them and for early social games of roly-poly. Preschoolers will find these easy and soft enough for learning to catch and throw. All Ages.

Age: Infants, Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2011 Award
Little Tikes 2 in 1 Garden Cart and Wheelbarrow
(Little Tikes $39.99 Score:)

Just right for your little gardener who will love having his own tools and easy to push wheelbarrow to assist with the family gardening! The wheelbarrow was slightly challenging for our builders to put together. It would have been easier if they had had a power drill or power screwdriver for the task. We've found that many of the plastic toys for the past few seasons require more assembly than before. That said,
this wheelbarrow offers lots of pretend power once it's put together. Comes with two pretend potted plants. Our testers especially loved that it had a working water sprayer (easy to fill up). There is a
removable striped canopy for shade protection.   Great fun for outdoor play. 2 & up.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2011 Award
Little Tikes Spiralin' Seas Waterpark
(Little Tikes $49.99 Score:)

A fun new water table for the older toddler/preschool set that is chockful of interesting things to do. The center post has a spiraling ball drop that's see thru so that you can watch the ball move downward and come out the bottom. There's a water wheel and, our favorite,  a ferris wheel for the balls. Comes with a a little fish that squirts water and cup for filling and dumping. The table has a veryeasy to access drainage  hole - important since you do not want to leave water in this table with toddlers afoot. Be sure to drain and supervise the use of this and any other toy that has water involved.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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Disney Pixar Cars 2 Bubble Maker
(Fisher-Price $32.99 Score:)

Fans of Cars2 will want this large Mater Bubble Blower when they see it in the store. Unfortunately, we found that the bubble blowing aspect of this toy doesn't work as well as we had hoped. You have to push pretty hard to get some bubbles to come out the side of Mater. While we applaud the battery-free aspect of this toy, it would have been more pleasing if the bubbles came out of the top and were more plentiful. Our parent testers also did not like that the bubble solution drips easily out the side of the toy when you pick it up ("solution is really sticky when it pours down your leg!"). 

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2011 Awards
Pacific Play Tents Very Hungry Caterpillar Tunnel
(Pacific Play Tents $49.95 Score:)

Our preschool testers enjoyed going through this six foot tunnel. Some of our parents thought that the joints could have been more padded--but our kid testers didn't seem to mind. This tunnel works with the company's tents in their Eric Carle Very Hungry Caterpillar series.  The tunnel has a mesh top so that you can watch your child work their way through -- also a plus for a younger child who may otherwise be tentative about going through a solid enclosed tunnel.  We also liked how easily the tunnel folds up  -- making this a great choice for smaller play spaces.

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

SNAP: This is a good choice for developing gross motor skills. It's a real challenge but offers an open mesh view that makes it more kid friendly.

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

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2011 Awards
Twist & Turn Ring Toss
(International Playthings $29.99 Score:)

In every sense, this is a ring toss game with several new twists. First of all the posts turn at two different speeds when the switch is on. They also move to two different musical tunes. Best of all the set-up can be varied. You can arrange the posts in a straight line or as they are pictured here in a more traditional configuration. For those who prefer, the sound can be turned off and the posts will not move. A fun active toy for indoor play. 3 & up, up, up.

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

SNAP: Getting kids involved in active play will be a lot easier with this fresh looking game. Use this game for score keeping if your child is working on numbers or turn taking if that is an issue.

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

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2011 Award
Diggin PopOut Ring Toss
(Diggin $19.99 Score:)

One of new line of active games from Diggin that are designed for easy take along and storage. The game comes in a red sack with a drawstring, a pop-out playmat, three blue post  that attach to the mat with Velcro, and three foam red rings ready to be tossed.Very clever.  In our view the most satisfying of the line (there is also a bowling set, bean toss and horseshoes). Marked 3 & up, but will be enjoyed by the five year old set as well! 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. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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Crayola Washable Colored Bubbles
(Crayola $2.99 Score:)

As much as we wanted to love these bubbles, they had some serious problems. They come with a whole host of warnings about what not to get them on. Yes, they are designed for outdoors--but even then, you have to be super careful not to get them on your decking, your outdoor furniture, etc.  Too many rules in our book.  More important, they just don't float the same way regular bubbles do. The "color" makes them heavier. Sadly, we'd recommend passing.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2011.

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