Search Results for -
Product Type: Toys
Age: Preschoolers
Categories: Games

 


2009 Award
eeBooo Wildlife Matching Game
(eeBoo $14.95 Score:)

Picture book artist, Kevin Hawkes, created a menagerie of animals to use in a concentration matching game. These are familiar creatures that children need to learn to name and know. You can also use them as a riddle game. Lay out four cards and say I’m thinking of an animal that goes “oink!” ; I’m thinking of an animal with feathers that sleeps in the daytime. It says “Whooo!” In time you can encourage your players to make up their riddles and try to stump you.  3 & up.

Age: Preschool. 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 Awards
Wash & String Beads
(Alex $16 Score:)

Twelve colorful wooden beads in the shape of clothing that preschoolers can string on a line. The string comes with a wooden dowel that makes it easier to thread through the beads. This kind of action develops fine motor skills of little hands as well as eye hand coordination. The various clothes also can expand vocabulary as kids identify pants, shirts, blouses, bathing suit. Playing pieces are good for pretend as well as counting. 3& up. The company has signed a verification form complying with our safety requirements. We did not independently test this toy in a lab.

SNAP IDEA:  Stringing threads through these wooden clothing shapes helps children develop fine motor skills as well as eye hand coordination. As they handle these wooden shapes you might want to use them to play a riddle game of “I’m thinking of something…” for example “I’m thinking of something that goes inside of shoes, they come in twos…they rhyme with rocks.” Yes, you found the socks. Or how about I’m thinking of something that has lots of dots, it is worn by girls, it rhymes with yes.” You found the dress! Or simply play a game of matching colors…”I spy two things that are yellow and pink…can you find them?” Knowing and naming the clothes is another way to reinforce vocabulary.

Age: Preschool. Award Year: 2009.

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2009 Award
Kinder-Ready Alphabet Clue Cards
(Elmer's $10 Score:)

Two piece puzzles fit together when kids match the two parts of a butterfly or caterpillar, etc. This alphabet set is done with art by renowned illustrator, Eric Carle. The matching halves show upper and lower case images of the letter illustrated. The reverse side of the puzzle shows the name of the picture with upper and lower case. These may be useful for building sight vocabulary for beginning readers.

We were less happy with the Rhyming and Opposite Clue Cards because the two concepts are not the same, though the playing pieces will be mixed up in one box. We also found the opposite concepts a bit confusing. For example, one set shows a peanut in a shell and another with the shell cracked—the concept here is suppose to be open and closed; we think a window or door would have done this more clearly. This is just one example of several pairs that are easily misunderstood. If you decide to buy these, we suggest you put the two sets into separate ‘baggies’ for less confusion and talk about the opposite concepts. 3 & up.

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

This toy is only available at Barnes & Noble until 2010

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009.

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2009 Award
Kinder-Ready Sizes & Shapes
(Elmer's $10 Score:)

Two piece puzzles with parent and child pairs to match as well as set of objects to match to geometric shapes. Unless they are in training for Jeopardy there’s no need to make a fuss over learning the proper names for animal young such as the cat fish type fish with its “fingerlings” or the Swan with its “cygnets”, or the seahorse with its “fry.” The art by illustrator Eric Carle is charming and the concept of big and small as well as shapes are key here. Some of the vocabulary feels like SAT’s for tots…way over the top. That said, this is a nice set of puzzles for telling stories, matching and even color and counting concepts. 3 & up.

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

This toy is only available at Barnes & Noble until 2010

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009.

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2009 Award
Kinder-Ready Colors & Numbers Clue Cards
(Elmer's $10 Score:)

Two piece puzzles fit together when kids match the color of an animal with the color card or the numeral shown with the same number of objects. We suggest you separate the two sets of cards for beginners. Just matching the color set or number set will be challenge enough at first. These are handsome cards done with the illustrator, Eric Carle’s playful art work. These are sound concepts to work on with preschoolers. Unfortunately, their String Along Skill Building Kit(3.5) has a string without a hard end, so it is going to be hard for little hands to string the plastic shaped beads. The best parts of the kit were the playing cards with ideas for sorting, patterns and matching games. These cards and the playing pieces work. It’s just the string that does not. You could bring it home and substitute a lacing string from another toy. We just cannot give it an award because of the lace that comes with the kit. 3 & up.

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

This toy is only available at Barnes & Noble until 2010.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009.

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2009 Award
Kinder-Ready Go Wild! Game
(Elmer's $19.99 Score:)

Eric Carle’s wonderful animal art is used for the 16 large circular playing disks of these active games that can be played by one, two or more players. Adult help will be needed to get these games going. First, you’ll need to inflate the playing dice with action words on one and dots for counting on the other. After that the variations of the game will need some explaining. Most of the games involve the action die that says “Dance, Crawl, Walk, Jump, Run or Sing like…” Player turns over a picture disk and must move like the animal pictured. There’s a ‘duck, duck, goose’ kind of variation only this one is called ‘hop, hop, holler!” when a child in the circle is told to holler he gets up and turns over a picture card and hollers like the animal he found. Now it’s that child’s turn to go round the circle and pick the next person who will be “it” and holler. These simple games are on the mark for 3’s and up.

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

This game is only available at Barnes & Noble until 2010.

Age: Preschool, Early School Years. Award Year: 2009.

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2009 Award
Chickyboom
(Blue Orange Games $22 Score:)

You start with a bunch of wooden hens (enjoyably purple), bales of hay and wagon wheels - all sitting on a perch. The object is to remove pieces without making everything fall over. The hens, hay and wheels all have different values. The player with the highest number value at the end of the round (when things fall off) wins. Fast paced, easy to learn...a hit with our testers. Requires, dexterity, adding skills, and a sense of humor!  They say 4 and up, we'd say even more fun for the 6 year old crowd.

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 Awards
LeapFrog Tag Junior
(LeapFrog $35 Score:)

Tag Junior is really a well designed platform for the 2-4 crowd. The books are all printed on sturdy cardboard stock. Pre-readers can use the Tag device to make the books speak more than the apparent text on the page. There are more than 100 interactions in each book that invite children to find objects on the page, as well as simply reading what the page says. Unlike the original Tag toy that reads true storybooks along with interactive touch features, this junior version explores ideas that do not have to be "read" in sequence. For younger children who may dip into a book without regard to its sequence, this makes sense. The toy comes loaded with one book, If I Were, a book full of animal sounds. There are 8 other titles available and a total of 13 that will be released this year. You buy the extra books in the store and then you download the interactions into the Tag Junior device with your computer. There is an ABC Orchestra book, another with action words. One of the best for this age group is a color concept book featuring Curious George. Dora the Explorer is also the star of a bilingual counting book that goes from 1-10 (although for most 2-4's learning to count to five in one language is probably enough.) You'll want to share these books with your child before handing off the device that they can then use independently. A carrying case ($14.99) that holds the Tag Jr. and five books will come in handy for storage as the library grows. 2-4

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

SNAP ADAPTATION: The chunky sensor is easier than most to grasp. If it needs to be futher adapted, a glove with velcro in the mitt and a strip of velcro on the sensor may do the trick. Unlike simply reading along with a recording, this learning tool enables beginning readers to follow along and get the sense of how the text moves from left to right. It encourages readers to learn the "mechanics" of how a book works from front to back, from left page to right. Add to this the fun of exploring the pages and art to make things happen and this goes a few steps beyond any other read aloud story system with real books!

 

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

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