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Product Type: Toys
Award: Platinum
Age: Toddlers
Review Year: 2012

 


2012 Award
Around the Yard Push Mower
(Manhattan Toy $42 Score:)

Our testers loved the clicky-clack sound of this old-fashioned handsomely crafted wooden push toy. This is intended for steady on their feet walkers who will enjoy their new found mobility. The three wooden balls are safely enclosed in the open slated drum. Can be used both indoors and out. Marked 12 months & up, but only if your one year old is completely steady on his feet.  It goes way to fast for children that are still wobbly.

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

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2012 Awards
ELC Stacking Faces
(International Playthings $14.99 Score:)

A wonderfully designed set of four stacking cups with amusing faces clipped to the side. Use them for nesting, stacking, pouring and sprinkling. Each of the cups has sprinkling holes that make them ideal for experimenting with in the bathtub. They are wider than most stacking cups and easier to grasp by the rims or faces. Also, thanks to the holes in the bottom they are safe and will not pose a hazard that solid cups can do. They are also of unusual sizes; the tallest being the inside one and almost transparent for looking through. The bottom cup is 4 inches wide and the set stacks to 6 inches high.  These will also make good beach toys for sifting sand or water. 6 months-2years. 

SNAP: Big and easy to handle cups that empower kids to stack, nest and best of all use for fun in the tub.

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

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2012 Awards
Little Tikes Discover Sounds Activity Garden
(Little Tikes $79.99 Score:)

Here's a little setting that will be enjoyed as a baby grows from crawling to toddling and even beyond. A soon-to-be three spent a happy time testing all the bells and whistles of the Activity Garden. It is not so much about gardening as it is about making things happen. There are doors to open and close and window with built-in ball run and shutters for games of peek-a-boo. The doorbell has a three buttons that activate three pleasing sounds. A crawl through archway will be fun for active play. There is a mailbox shape, movable bugs to slide, pictures to click, and a detachable three-language phone with buttons that say the numerals baby presses in English, French or Spanish. This is a wonderfully inviting play setting with a terrific variety of activities for fine and gross motor skills. You can convert the four-walled setting into an open one, but we found it is less stabile in the opened positions. This does require assembly, but it went together with relative ease.  It is a big toy, almost 34 by 25 inches.  If you have the room it will be used for a reasonably long time.

SNAP: A good choice for active play that can be enjoyed by children with physical challenges, even if they can not stand. A variety of play modes here that empower kids to make things move and sound.

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

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2012 Awards
ELT Click-Clack Caterpillar
(International Playthings $59.95 Score:)

A two-sided toy with fast click-clack segmented car that runs down the track on one side and a ball run on the other side. The ball run moved slower for tracking, while the little segmented car whizzes on down. Toddlers love the repetition of this kind of toy. They can play this with sound effects, music, or with the sound switch off. Just the motion of the car or balls produces sounds. There is also a most welcome volume control switch. A great 1st birthday gift! 12 months-2.

SNAP: A good choice for visual tracking, since the ball run moves slower than most. This is one of those toys that develops dexterity as well as hands on experience with cause and effect.

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

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2012 Award
Kid O Plane
(Kid O $19 Score:)

Pick your favorite color or buy the fleet - blue, red or green. These chunky 8" X 9" planes are uncomplicated enough for toddlers to scoot around with on their knees or lift in flight. The appealing planes roll smoothly and have propellers that turn only if your toddler makes it happen. Fun for crawlers as well as beginning walkers as they begin to enjoy early pretend play. 1 & up.

Age: Toddlers, Preschool. Award Year: 2012.

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2012 Award
Corolle Large Rag Doll (Pink or Grenadine)
(Corolle $34.95 Score:)

 Ready for hugging - these lovable 13" dolls are dressed in velour and have long arms and legs for easy grabbing. Safe stitched features make this a good choice for a first doll. Choose from the red and hot pink version (called Grenadine) with melon colored scarf and shoes or the pink one. Either is a winner. Their striped skirts and textured bodies add to their sensory appeal. These blue eyed rag dolls are big enough to give toddlers an armful of delight while remaining light enough for them to handle with ease.  Clothes are sewn on for safe keeping and the doll is machine washable. One and up.
    

 

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

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