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Product Type: Toys
Age: Early Elementary School Years

 


2009 Award
I Spy Flip 5 Game
(Briarpatch $12.95 Score:)

Here's a quick matching game that is a step above the usual kind of one-for-one identical matching kids do with Lotto games. On the playing chips there are images of two horses, but one is may be a silhouette and others maybe yellowish or white with black markings. Matching has to do with the basic attribute of finding two horses. Game play goes on for five rounds. First to win the most matches in five games is the winner. Other versions of play are included for younger players. Also interesting, but even more challenging, Dino Flip 5 ($12.95 4.5) Sure to make a hit with dino-haulics who will know the names of the various dinosaurs pictured on the playing pieces. Making the pairs is more challenging since the shapes of some are similar and the proof is in noticing the details. That said, this is a fun game with a touch of science added to the mix. They say 4 & up, we'd say 5-8 is more like it. These are good games for developing an eye for detail, a skill needed for noticing the differences between words that look alike - as in through and thought or sight and slight. 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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2009 Award
Big Trucks and Diggers Matching Game
(Chronicle $14.95 Score:)

A classic concentration matching game with cards that feature all sorts of diggers, grapplers, shovels, excavators and other big construction trucks. This is a companion game to a book by the same name. Comes in a sturdy magnetized storage box. Develops memory and matching skills. Bring the book home as another way to satisfy preschooler's interest in things that go.. Sure to please the truck lover in your midst. 3 & 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.

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2009 Award
eeBoo Life on Earth Lacing Cards
(eeBoo $15 Score:)

Five colorful cards with bright laces that children can “sew” around the big and baby bear, peacock, fish in coral, turtle, and elephant and baby. This kind of toy is ideal for honing fine motor skills needed for writing without the drill of shaping letters. Learning to use the small muscles in fingers to accomplish this task takes staying power and patience. This looks simpler than it is and is best used with school aged kids 5 & up.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2009 Award
eeBoo Fairytale Game
(eeBoo $16.95 Score:)

Players take turns spinning the dial and collecting one of each item for their place ard…a hero, magical helper, magical object, transportation, and treasure. The first player who manages to collect one of each item is the winner who must now tell a story using the items collected. Although the playing pieces remain the same the items collected will rarely if ever be the same—nor will the story that the winner tells. A fun game of chance, with a creative ending. 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: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2009 Award
eeBoo Prechool Picture Dominoes
(eeBoo $13 Score:)

Familiar bugs, birds and animals are pictured on these chunky cardboard dominoes. No reading or counting required. This is a simple matching game to develop visual matching and turn taking. There are opportunities to count, for those who are moving in that direction, as well as building color concepts and language. 3 & 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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2009 Award
eeBoo Preschool Nature Memory Game
(eeBoo $13 Score:)

Big picture cards with scalloped edges are easy enough for little hands to lift and turn over to make matches. Use these for a classic concentration game or with slightly older children play a rhyming game. Put four card out and say I’m thinking of something that rhymes with junk, trunk, monk….to go with the picture of the skunk. Or, use the same cards for finding something that grows, is alive, but cannot speak…the child must find the apple tree. 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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2009 Award
Maxi Kick Scooter
(Kickboard USA $149 Score:)

The Maxi Scooter is designed for kids ages 6-10. Based on the 3-wheel design of the Mini Scooter, the Maxi is the Mini's big sister and big brother, designed for bigger kids. It is - bigger, cooler, tougher, stronger for the action it is sure to get. Our testers like the convertible handle that can be used upright, like a joy stick or sideways in the traditional style. Available in black or purple. 6 & 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, Later School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2009 Award
Ring-o Flamingo
(Gamewright $20 Score:)

Our testers thought this was was "fun" and really "different". Parent testers thought the directions were clear and the start up time was very quick. The game design is, in fact, unique. You take the pink flamingoes and alligator play pieces and lock them into the board. Each player is given a life boat with color coded lifesavers on them. The idea is to save the flamingoes from the alligators--and you do this by flinging your life savers off your boat and onto the game board. The more flamingoes you save, the more points you get. This is a fast-paced game that will be enjoyed by kids and grown ups. We found the best place to play this game was on the floor. You need to move your boats back from the board in order to capture the flamingoes. It's like a board game edition of ring toss--but here everyone is tossing at the same time.

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: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2009 Award
Les Deglingos
(All New Materials $40 Score:)

An all new look in huggables, the Deglingos are made of patterned cotton knits, wide ribbed corduroy, fuzzy plush, and felt trims. The collection includes a rabbit, hound dog, cat, hedgehog, rat, cow, and sheep. They have a zany look that is likely to appeal to 'tweens as much as younger kids. 3 & up.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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2009 Award
Money Monster Banks
(Creativity for Kids $19.99 Score:)

Two ceramic monster banks come with acrylic and puff paint, paint and sponge brushes, adhesive dots, wiggly eyes, fun fur hair and ideas for decorating. The big bank has a big enough mouth to "eat" bills while the smaller one has an opening for coins. Both have removable plugs that allow kids to get to their savings without breaking the bank. You'll find the acrylic paint needs two coats for good coverage. 8 & 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, Later School Years. Award Year: 2009. Click here to purchase the product on Amazon.com.

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