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

 


2008 Award
Imaginext Spike the Ultra Dinosaur
(Fisher-Price $129.99 Score:)

This is the clearly the year of the dinosaur! Spike, a green remote control dino that really roars, lights up and moves (his neck also moves independently) is a leading part of this trend. Spike's controls are easy to learn. He's marked for kids 3-10. It really depends on your child- we had mixed reactions. He's not nearly as scary as Wowwee's dinos of the past, but not as warm and fuzzy as the larger Kota from Playskool. If you have a five or six year old in the "dino-zone" this will be a hit.

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: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Fun Fly Stick Magic Levitation Wand
(Unitech Toys $26.95 Score:)

Want to see kids up and moving? Here's a fun novelty toy that seems to work by magic. In fact the magic is electrostatic! Remember how you used to make a balloon float after rubbing it with your hair…or how you gave your little sister a shock by dragging your feet on the carpet? Same idea…only more fun! Press the button on the magic wand, toss one of the three flying toys up, touch it once with the wand and get ready for magic! Your wand will keep the silvery iridescent toy levitating as you chase it around the room. A word of caution, this is not to be used within 3 feet of any electronic devices such as a computer or TV. Therefore, this is a toy that will need supervision…and please, let the kids play with it.

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: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Double Shutter
(Blue Orange Games $18 Score:)

This is a variation on the old Shut the Box addition game, but instead of one row of numbers to add and flip down, this game has two sets of tiles to flip down. The advanced game comes with numerals from one to nine in a handsome red tin with a curved front where the dice are thrown. Match them or add them. Your object is to be the player with the lowest score at the end of your round. 10-20 minutes a round. Good for 8 to adult. For younger players, consider Double Shutter Jr. with numerals from 1-6. Again, there is a double set of tiles.

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: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Fundomino
(Blue Orange Games $19.99 Score:)

32 Curved dominoes with numerals and colors to match as well as action symbols to avoid or draw – wild dominoes that can set your game back seriously or propel you to a winning streak. Play it one round at a time or keep score on the special board with playing pieces that keep track of your score. Comes in a good metal tin for safekeeping.

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: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2012 Award
American Girl Bitty Twins Multicultural Collection
(American Girl $95 Score:)

One of best collections of multicultural dolls ever. We are also thrilled that there are boy dolls (often very hard to find) included in this updated collection of twin dolls that include Caucasian, African American, Hispanic, Asian sets of twins. The attention to detail for these contemporary twins is nothing less than you would expect from American Girl. You can select your own twins on line- also very clever. New for this season, new clothes for the dolls and matching clothes for kids.

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: 2012.

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2008 Award
Fur Real Friends Biscuit My Lovin Pup
(Hasbro $199 Score:) We love Biscuit. It's really that simple. He's a 24" tall pup with golden hair. We know he's not real but his facial expression are amazingly cute and dog like (in that perfect animatronic kind of way). As gushy as this review is sounding, we should note that Biscuit also does several tricks (via voice recognition). He can sit, lie down, shake your hand, wag his tag, bark-- of course he doesn't always do it right, which is also very puppy like. We suppose a stricter toy reviewer would give low marks for functionality--but it just made us all love him more. We do wish that Biscuit wasn't so pricey and that he did not run on 6 D batteries (you do have to turn him off or you'll be spending a small fortune on batteries)- but he's really very special in the novelty dog category. He doesn't walk, but he is very huggable and may do the trick if a real dog is not a possibility. The smaller Fur Real Tumbles (he rolls over) is just not as good. The internal mechanism that makes it possible for him to roll over takes away from his huggability-his fur is also not as nice as Biscuit's. For a smaller dog, at a lower price- look at last year's Lucky, the Incredible Wonder Dog from Zizzle.

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: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Playmobil Horse Farm Pony Set
(Playmobil $99.99 Score:)

If all things ponies and horses are big in your house, here's the perfect gift to bring home! A new horse farm that comes with a red roofed stable (with room for three ponies). Set includes three ponies, food, fence, grooming gear, wheel barrel, hay, ladder, three people and the all important shovel. As with all Playmobil sets, for a younger child you'll have to help with the set up - making this a great parent/child project. Your child will then have a wonderful pretend setting to enjoy with you or independently. Other add on that are fun and will extend the pretend possibilities: Horse Washing Station ($24.99), Horse Trailer ($42.99), and Trotting Racer ($8.99).

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: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Cheekeyes Wooden Dinosaur Animal Set
(Cheekeyes $29.99 Score:)

You know that we're big on wooden blocks as basic gear for the preschool set. Adding props to blocks can spark new directions for dramatic play. We love this new line of handsomely crafted wooden dinosaurs. The company also offers a set of farm animals, trees, a cave and a mountain. The dinos and the animals are outstanding in this category. They are very smooth (as all wooden toys should be) and they have paint only on the sides. Available only on line at oompa.com.

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: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2009 Award
Pengoloo
(Blue Orange Games $29.95 Score:)

This is a concentration game played with a group of wooden penguins that you line up with colored eggs hidden inside. Players take turns lifting two penguins and trying to make a match with the colored dice they throw. Object is to collect six penguins on your iceberg. It’s not easy! 2-4 players. Game time is 10-15 minutes. 4 & 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. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2008 Award
Playskool Tonka Bounce Back Racer
(Hasbro $34.99 Score:)

Finding a remote control vehicle for the preschool set can be challenging. The controls can be too confusing and the vehicle can have too much power--which is why we were really happy when we tried out this new Tonka remote control vehicle. Much like the old Tyco remotes, this vehicle flips (once you get the hang of it, it's really fun to make happen). What's different? It's covered in squishy, soft plastic and comes with big soft rubber tires. In other words, no sharp edges or parts to hurt small hands. You do need to be close by for the remote to work. There are also three battery compartments (we'll admit it, we only saw two for awhile!). Other great remotes for this age group come from Kid Galaxy.

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: 2008. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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