Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Preschoolers
Categories: Art Supplies

 

 
2013 Awards
Play-Doh Plus
(Hasbro $8.99 Score:)

Play-doh has been updated to make it softer and smoother than ever. It has an almost silky feel and will stay that way if stored in air-tight containers. This set has eight different vibrant colors that can also be used with special tools that are sold separately. The package indicates that it is non-toxic, but does contain wheat. 2 & up.

SNAP : A classic model material that is even more pliable now. Excellent for developing hand and fingers. Also good for shaping snakes to form letters, giving children a sensory feel of forming letters.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2013 Awards
Manhattan Toy Finger Paint Fun
(Manhattan Toy $20 Score:)

Designed for little hands, this fingerpaint kit comes in a cute tin carrying case loaded with four colors of washable finger paint, three plastic scrapers with different edges and three stampers. Ideal for exploring textures, colors, and open-ended hands-on painting. You will need to provide the paper, apron or smock and drop cloth to protect the work surfaces. 3 & up.

SNAP: Chubby handles on the painting tools are easier to grasp and ready for exploring.  Some children are reluctant to put their hands directly into the paint, while others will see no reason to use the tools. Either way, with tools or hands-on painting offers opportunities for them to see how paints blend to form new colors as well as giving concrete meaning to words like wavy, straight, jagged, wiggly, etc. It also encourages whole hand, arm and finger motions that provide a sense of control and sensory feedback. Messy? Sure. But play and learning go hand in hand with some messiness. Cover up their clothes and the work surface and be prepared for serious clean-up. Keep it playful.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2013. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Award
Faber-Castell Black Paper Sketch Pad
(Creativity for Kids $4.99 Score:)

A pad of 40 sheets of black paper that is thinner than construction paper and designed for metallic pencil and gel sticks. It would probably work well with glittery glue sticks ot colored chalks. A good choice for making Halloween decorations, too.

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

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2012 Awards
eeBoo Carnival Glitter Glue
(eeBoo $5 Score:)

Who can resist the thrill of a fresh pack of glitter glue? Use them for drawing, decorating cards or packages, add it to gift tags. eeBoo has several mixed sets with narrow tips that allow you to draw with some accuracy. Each set comes with four glue sticks of related hues.  They do look a bit like candy sticks and choosing the colors you may be hard to do...they all look so tempting to kids who like crafts.

SNAP: An appealing way to get kids to develop hand strength. Cover up the work space, cover up the cloths and let the fun begin. Allow kids to explore in an open-ended way for starters. Then, print your child's name on a big piece of paper and have her trace the lines to make a name sign.

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

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2012 Award
eeBoo 18 Crayons
(eeBoo $5.99 Score:)

These are bigger than the usual crayons and better suited for small hands. The plaid box has 18 colors inside and some have a neon look as well as pastels and your basic primary colors. A good choice for 5 & up.

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

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2011 Award
eeBoo Little Books
(eeBoo $7 Score:)

Want to encourage kids to write and tell their own stories?  These sets of four little paper books are perfect for inspiring beginners. They come with stickers for the title and author's name, to be added to the cover. Each page has lines on one side and a blank facing sheet, so kids can illustrate their original picture books. Have beginners make a book about their family, a counting or color book or retelling of a familiar story. For the youngest, you might want to have them dictate a small story about a trip to the zoo or the doctor's office and then have them illustrate it. There are various sets of these books with charming printed covers. Inspiring kids to make their own books develops their language,  dexterity, and creative thinking. 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.

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2011 Award
eeBoo Metallic Color Pencils and Sketchbook
(eeBoo $7.99 Score:)

Getting kids to pick up a pencil can be no fun, especially when kids find writing letters challenging. The very kids who need to practice the most are often the most reluctant. Enter a set of six metallic colored pencils ($7.99) that are slightly fatter but shaped with three sides, to make the gripping all the easier. Choose a robot graphic box or one with birds. Best of all there's a gold, silver, aqua, green, bronze and pinkish pencil for making unusual drawings and signs. Sure to please even the most reluctant beginning writers. There are also larger sets of metallic pencils with 24 pencils in a metal container($14.95. ) For inspiration, bring home matching spiral covered sketch books ($6) with Golden Bird or Silver Robot. The paper is smooth and heavy enough for color pencils and even watercolors. 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: Preschool, Early School Years, Later School Years. Award Year: 2011. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
Crayola Story Studio
(Crayola $3.99 & up Score:)

When you say Crayola, most of us conjure up the idea of the yellow and green box, the smell of the crayons, and the possibilities that they present. High tech usually isn't in the picture- until this year.  Crayola Color Studio allows you to take a code off the box (boxes of 48 crayons or more) and use the on-line studio where you can import a picture of your child (or you!) to place as the central character of their own story.  You can print out as many pages as you'd like.  Great fun!

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: 2010. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2010 Award
The World of Eric Carle Paper Supplies
(Canson $2.50 and up Score:)

Canson has created a wonderful wide range collection of paper supplies meant to inspire young artists and fans of Eric Carle.  This new eco series (90% of the paper is made from recycled materials)  includes little market and sketch pads that are just right for taking out of a backpack while you're traveling.  We especially love the little Sketch and Tell pads ($1.99 each) that have a place for your child's picture as well as a some lined space for them to write (or dictate) to you what they've drawn.  There are also larger scale pads for drawing, painting, markers, tracing and our favorite - a big juicy pad designed for finger painting! Is this clever marketing? Yes.  But at the end of the day, it's lovely paper and may just get your child started on creating their own designs!

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

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2010 Award
Alex Magnetic Tabletop Easel
(Alex $59.99 Score:)

The latest in Alex's line of tabletop easels. We were a little puzzled by the box.  It is a magnetic easel, but there are no magnetic pieces included even though they are pictured on the box.  Most toy companies have ditched magnetic letters due to all of the problems with magnets. The easel also comes with four paint cups, but no brushes (even though they are also on the box). There's also no eraser for the erase board -- (none is shown on the box). With all of that said--this is well-made wooden easel and a great choice if space is an issue. It does come with paper!!

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

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